When You Can’t Afford the “Real Deal”: 5 Alternatives to the Wishbone Chair

You may not know its name, but you might recognize the shape of the ubiquitous wishbone chair by Hans Wegner.  Introduced in 1949, it was based on a Chinese child’s chair and had a Y-shaped splat with a curved back. I’ve seen it absolutely everywhere on Pinterest lately, and its elegant lines are just as beautiful today as they were 65 years ago.

CH24 Wishbone Chair. Photo source: Designmuseum DK.

CH24 Wishbone Chair. Photo source: Designmuseum DK.

Wegner (pronounced VEG-ner in English, VAY-ner in Danish) was a Danish designer who was instrumental in popularizing the warm wood tones and soft, organic lines in what we’ve come to call Danish Modern design, or Mid-century Modern.  His chairs are especially known for their comfort and their inspiration from traditional furniture.

via Emmas Designblogg

via Emmas Designblogg

 

Wegner, born in 1914, was the son of a Danish cobbler and learned woodworking as a young boy.  He began designing in 1938 and by the mid 1940s he started his own design business.  Completing over 200 chairs during his lifetime, his chairs are still made today by the Danish company Carl Hansen & Son.

via So Haute Style

via So Haute Style

 

You can, of course, purchase a genuine Wishbone chair–but it’s going to cost you.  Instead, I thought I’d share with you some of my favorite affordable alternatives–chairs that are either directly inspired by the wishbone, or at the very least maintain its spirit!

John Vogel Dining Chair, West Elm, $229.99.

John Vogel Dining Chair, West Elm, $229.99.

Neils Natural Chair, Crate & Barrel, $211.

Neils Natural Chair, Crate & Barrel, $211.

ESBJÖRN Chair, Ikea, $89.

ESBJÖRN Chair, Ikea, $89.

Natural Bowen Wishbone Chair, World Market, $139.99.

Natural Bowen Wishbone Chair, World Market, $139.99.

 

And of course, if you’re a purist, there are always knock-offs to be found:

Amish Chair, Homeclick.com, $144.23.

Amish Chair, Homeclick.com, $144.23.

You can read more about Hans Wegner here and here.  What do you think? Are these chairs for you?

DIY: How to Make Your Own Map Bunting

I love using garlands and bunting in kids’ spaces–they add a fun and festive vibe and are incredibly easy to make.  As some of you know, these past few weeks I’ve been making over C’s playroom as part of the One Room Challenge  (see the project from the beginning here and here).  I wanted to include a subtle vintage schoolhouse theme, and what is more “schoolhouse” than maps?  After finding the perfect map garland on Etsy, Cassie from Primitive and Proper pointed out that this could be a great DIY project.  And she was right!

 

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Supplies:

  • Vintage maps. I found several for $1 at Cassie’s Sweet Clover Barn sale this weekend. That place seriously rocks!
  • Pencil
  • Sheet of paper
  • Ruler
  • Grosgrain ribbon, measured and cut to 106″
  • Scissors
  • Sewing machine & thread

 

First, make a template using your ruler, pencil, and sheet of paper.  The top of the pennant should be 6″ wide, and the whole thing should be 7″ long.  I began by marking 3″ and 6″ across the top of my paper, as you can see from the photo:

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Cut out the template, and use it to trace your pennants.  Then, cut them out. (If your maps were rolled like mine, a couple of swipes with your iron on its lowest setting will make them nice and flat.)  I cut out 12 pennants for my garland.

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Now take your ribbon, and mark about 6″ in with your pencil (this will be your tail).  Then measure another 6″ for your first pennant and mark.  Then measure 2″ and mark (for the two-inch space between each pennant).  Continue the 6″-2″-6″-2″ pattern down the length of your ribbon.

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Then, get out your sewing machine.  Place the ribbon underneath the needle, so that the marked side is facing up.  Then, take your first pennant and place it face-down on top of the ribbon at your first mark.  Make sure the needle is in the center of the ribbon, but the pennant is completely overlapping it, like so:

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Sew the pennant to the ribbon, taking care to keep the needle in a straight line.  Continue sewing past the pennant into your 2″ marked zone.  At the start of the next 6″ section, stop the machine and place your next pennant on the ribbon, face-down.  Sew the pennant on just as you did the first.  Continue this pattern until you’ve sewed the entire length of the ribbon, and have used all your pennants.

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That’s it! Now hang it up and enjoy your handiwork.

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