Is there Such a Thing as a Contemporary Chaise Longue?

Before delving into the topic of this article, I felt the need to comment on a couple of things:

  1. the original spelling was “chaise longue“, which meant “long chair” in French.  Here in Canada (and in other parts of the world too, I suspect), I have sometimes seen it written “chaise lounge“; and
  2. I have always thought of a chaise longue as a piece of furniture for sitting on with an end and a back that gradually reduced in height, and perhaps a second end as well.
Chaise Longue (Photo from http://multay.com/)

This is what I think of as a chaise longue. (Photo from http://multay.com/)

Although chairs with an extended seat could be called chaise longues, for the point of this article, I excluded them.

I don't think of this as a chaise longue.  (Photo from http://www.miliboo.com)

I don’t think of this as a chaise longue. (Photo from http://www.miliboo.com)

Last weekend, I was in a furniture store when I noticed a chaise longue.  I’ve always been attracted to seating furniture and have always liked analyzing its lines and comfort, and this chaise longue was no different.

After a cursory look at the form, I sat down crossways, with my feet flat on the ground, my back against the sloped, upholstered back rest.  Then I pivoted and swung my legs up onto the extended upholstered seat.  I found this position equally comfortable.  I liked that the back rest wasn’t reclined as most lounge chairs seemed.  However, I could slouch if I wanted to sit in a more laid-back position.

Only yesterday did I realize that every chaise longue that I’d seen was a period piece.  Even a search of the internet yielded no contemporary versions.

Just in case you haven’t already guessed, I am thinking about designing a chaise longue.  I’m not sure what it will look like, but it’s a pretty safe bet that wood will be one of the primary materials used.

6 thoughts on “Is there Such a Thing as a Contemporary Chaise Longue?

  1. I’m excited to see how you will innovate in this form. I’ve often admired the chaise/divan pieces. I wonder if the form was replaced at least in part with the “loveseat” and the sectional sofa.

    A successful revival would need to provide two position, seating for one, yet also provide an alternative experience from the aforementioned furniture. Looking forward to see where you take this.

    • Now that you mention it, I do recall seeing the form as part of a corner couch, which is usually comprised of two or more parts slid together. Here’s one example; the chaise longue part is at the back.

      Corner Couch (photo from http://gaddyhomebuilders.com/leather-sofas-tips.html)

      Chris

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