The original Michael Thonet designed No.18 bentwood chair has a rich European tradition and is thought of by many as the quintessential Viennese café chair and dining chair. The Thonet No.18, also commonly called the Vienna Café chair, was produced by Michael Thonet and Sons. Michael Thonet was a German cabinet maker who pioneered the use of bentwood furniture design. Thonet began experimenting with the new forms in the 1830s.
Using steam to make the wood more pliable, Thonet would use one piece of wood to create the chair’s back rest and back legs, then add a seat and front legs. This structure has become the very standard of what we call a bentwood chair, influencing the designs of every bentwood chair that came after it.
Our original Vienna Café chair designed by Michael Thonet is constructed from Beech wood and is featured here in a warm walnut finish. The timber seat of our Michael Thonet No.18 original is embossed with a beautiful, subtle starburst pattern like a Japanese sun. This beautiful seat detail adds a distinctive, custom feel to an already stunning chair. Our Michael Thonet designed No.18 original chair is incredibly durable making our Vienna Café chair suitable for both commercial and residential use. Ideal for use in your kitchen, our No.18 kitchen chair works well with many different table styles.
If you do happen to make a purchase of one of our Original Bentwood items you can be sure that they are Made in Poland like they have been for over 150 years.
With each original bentwood item purchased from Relaxhouse you are acquiring a little piece of history. These are hand made using a combination of heat, steam and pressure in a time honoured tradition of man versus nature.
“The unique wood bending technique was originated in the 19th century by Michael Thonet. For over a century now, we have carried on with this amazing craft, creating timeless furniture for generations to come. We act with respect to people and nature around us”
“Since the very beginning, our company's operation has been based on Michael Thonet's extraordinary legacy.”
If you take the time to admire you will notice that each product is unique using many actual pieces of European Beechwood. Based on the nature of natural wood inconsistencies in grain, joins, colour, texture and shape deserve appreciation like strokes on a painting or sculpture.
It is important to note that any stress marks in the timber from the production process will not exacerbate over time. Stresses caused in the bending and joining process are what make these items so impressive. this can be more prevalent in the painted options as the paint tends to highlight these 'perfect imperfections'