The Consummate Wingback Chair

Posted In Design - 04/08/2017

A classic design that’s been around for centuries, the wingback chair has made a comeback in modern homes.  Initially designed in the late 1600s for use by the fireplace, its grand design includes upholstery or leather over a structured tall back with wings (or cheeks), solid covered arms and open base with wood legs.  These were designed to keep the heat of the fireplace in and cold drafts out when facing the fire, or shield the face from too much heat when turned to the side.

They invoke imagery of grand estate homes with ladies of the manor from yester-year or reputable gentlemen with pipes and newsprint.  These tried and true hallmark pieces have made a resurgence in today’s homes with an updated style and refreshing new uses.

Interesting fabric choices or refreshing plays on the traditional shape can create formality without being stodgy.

You’ll find wingback chairs popping up in virtually every room of the house:

Fireside – this is the classic spot for a wingback chair, either as a standalone piece or in a pair. It’s a stayed tradition as a comfortable spot to lounge, read and warm yourself on a cold winter day.

Living Room in Pairs – this formal seat looks great as a pair, enabling you to play off of its conventionality with a symmetrical floorplan in your living room. Add updated drama to your room by pairing different styles and different upholstery for “his and hers” chairs.

Home Office – a pair of wingback chairs are the perfect guest seats in a home office.  Alternatively, use a wingback chair as your desk chair for a polished and dignified look.

Reading Nook – pair a wingback chair with an accent table and a floor lamp to create a cozy reading nook in any corner of your home.

Bookend the Dining Table – a refreshing new spot for wing chairs is as armchairs at the head and foot of the dining table.  Create an interesting combination by selecting an accent fabric for these stand-out pieces.  Look for easy-care performance fabrics like Microfiber so that spills and staining won’t be an issue.

Bedroom – a wingback chair becomes a stately addition to your master bedroom, adding a stylish place to relax, put on your socks or read a book.

In the Nursery a wingback chair can be a perfect nursing chair with arm rests to comfort you while you sit with your little one and the wings make a nice headrest if you are dozing by the side of a finicky sleeper.

Formal and fabulous, you can’t go wrong with this versatile seating choice.