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wingback chair guide

by Grace Bonney

d*s reader angela asked if i would round up some great wingback chairs on the market. wingbacks are some of my favorite types of chairs, despite the fact that they don’t exactly encourage napping. i tend to enjoy what i call “stylishly lazy” furniture that lets you lounge and nap while you watch tv without being overstuffed and heavy. but sometimes you need something with a little structure, or a place to sit and read where you won’t fall asleep. so now that i sound like someone who does nothing but fall asleep in furniture, i’ll let the chairs do the talking. some of these models can get pretty pricey so a good thing to remember is that the cheaper models shown here can be reupholstered in a bright, kicky pattern to keep them looking sharp and modern. click here for the full roundup or just click “read more” below. enjoy!

[image above, clockwise from top left: wingback by james design, wing chair by matthew hilton, vintage wing chair $2995, peekaboo wing chair, josef wingback $2498, chelsea wing chair $1200+]

[image above, clockwise from top left: evan chair $1200, keates wing chair $1395, josef wingback $1998, shantal wing chair, daughtry wingback $1498, briar chair $699]

[image above, clockwise from top left: pair of vintage rattan wingback chairs $2999, gracie wing chair $299, leaf linen wingback $1998, petite wingback chairs at 1stdibs.com]

[image above: wingback chair by autoban design]

[image above, left to right: wingback chair at horchow $1615, wingback lounge $649]

[image above, clockwise from top left: bergman his chair $1895, hawthorne wing chair $2295, ashton wing chair, wingchair cover $89.99 (would work well on this chair), vintage wing chair $2195, howell wing chair $895]

[image above, left to right: hudson wingchair cover $139.99 (try on the $299 gracie chair), moroso modern wingback $4601]

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  • I just bought my first wing chairs at Bombay! They are cranberry red dupioni silk. I like to call them my “don’t sit” chairs. They are going to fabulous in my living room.

  • Great guide, Grace. I love the Autoban chair (they have such great stuff) and I LOVE the two-tone upholstery on the Horchow chair. My favorite wingback, not that I’ll EVER be able to afford it, is a Jens Risom chair that they carry at Pucci. I couldn’t figure out how to paste a direct link. If you go to: http://www.ralphpucci.net/flash.html then click on furniture, Jens Risom, it is the first chair that comes up, upholstered in white. Love it!

  • It is very easy to find this kind of chair at thrift shops because they are so ubiquitous. (I found one for 5 dollars.) And even if you are not handy, you can get a professional to recover one for much less than the cost of most of these (very handsome) chairs.

  • HELP! i am having a hard time finding chic but cheap upholstery fabric for two wingback chairs. they look exactly like the zebra ones. i want classic but with a kick. i’m afraid of the amazing patterns i am drawn to, because i know i will get sick of such loud patterns. anyone have suggestions?????

  • I love wing chairs. But that peekaboo one really takes the cake with it’s shell attachment. Just noticed that the shell has an open and close window in it!

  • $1998 + for 1 chair? As the old saying goes…a fool and his/her money will soon be parted.

    salvation army chair – $30
    Recovered – $200
    result – 100% nicer then any shown

    not all your readers make or married tons of money or live in manhattan overpriced boxes.

  • lighten up dude. the post is as much about stimulating ideas as it is actually buying these particular chairs.

    i for one love shopping for vintage furniture, but i would have not even considered buying a wing chair until i saw that they could look this awesome.

  • Could you do a guide on best places to buy fabric? I am really looking for where to buy upholstery fabrics to redo a wingback chair I just found.

  • What are the advantages and disadvantages of having either two matching wingbacks on either side of a window or two that have complementary colors? I can’t decide.

  • Hi Margaret, this would be very late seeing as you posted your question back in March, but I’d say go for the complementary colours rather than having them matchy-matchy, especially as the wingback is such a strong structural shape already, varying colours would not be too jarring and add more interest, don’t you think?

    Anyway, I loooove wingbacks, and have to disagree with Amy unfortunately regarding the dosing factor as I thought wingbacks were designed originally with the intent of helping the reader dose by the fire, that’s the whole purpose of the wings — to keep out the drought but also to allow resting place for dozy heads. My own prized wingback is here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/79741326@N00/953675808/in/set-72157601104835851/

  • Any tips on where to source nice wingbacks in Europe? There don’t seem to be as many options and they tend to be in the higher price range.

  • Do you happen to know who’s chair is in the top grouping. It’s the white one on the left with the push pins.