The Frances Elkins Loop Chair

Have you ever fallen for a piece of furniture? Well, I have too and the ribbon loop chair is just the latest of many crushes! Lately I’ve been seeing this loop-y chair everywhere I look so I decided to do a little background check and find out more about the pretty little thing. It turns out, the loop chair was originally designed in 1930 by Chicago decorator Frances Elkins, inspired by 18th-century ones owned by the founder of the English magazine Country Life. Its fine silhouette resembles a thick ribbon that winds around to create an infinity pattern and, despite its delicate shape, the frame is sturdy and super comfortable.

Cafe Design | Frances Elkins Loop Chair

One of the great things about this chair design is its versatility. Just like the Chinese Chippendale style chairs, it lends itself to a variety of interiors. From contemporary to traditional, even country, it fits every style and adds copious amounts of charm.

Miles Redd (Danielle Rollins home), March 2012

Miles Redd

Cafe Design | Elkins Loop Chair | Miles Redd

Miles Redd

Cafe Design | Elkins Loop Chair | Tom Scheerer

Tom Scheerer 

Cafe Design | Elkins Loop Chair | Meg Braff Desk

Meg Braff

Cafe Design | Elkins Loop Chair | Meg Braff

Meg Braff

Cafe Design | Elkins Loop Chair | Christopher Spitzmiller

Christopher Spitzmiller 

Cafe Design | Elkins Loop Chair | Aerin Lauder's Hamptons Home

Aerin Lauder’s home in the Hamptons

The funny thing about this chair style is that there are very few originals out there – Elkins had only eight pieces made. Four were sent to Mrs. Marshall Field to her Long Island home while the other four stayed near Chicago. The later were recently auctioned for somewhere between $6,000 and $8,000 a pair while the other four are still at large.

The publication of Stephen M. Salny’s book on the work of Frances Elkins in 2005 was followed by a wave of contemporary reissues. Today, a quality chair in this style costs upwards of $500 and comes in different finishes / seat cushions while the classic paint finish was white lacquer with an upholstered seat in a solid color (Elkins favored blue and yellow).

Old or new, original or faux (though if I had to chose I’d take the original, thank you) I adore them!

Have a wonderful weekend!



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