The Monroe Chair (An Armchair) by Alexander White
2011 - 2012, Golden A' Furniture, Decorative Items and Homeware Design Award Winner
Marilyn Monroe's white pleated dress in Billy Wilder's 'Seven year itch' 1955.
Striking elegance, simplicity in idea, comfortable, designed with sustainability in mind. The Monroe Chair is an attempt to drastically simplify the manufacturing process involved in making an armchair. It exploits the potential of CNC technologies to repeatedly cut out a flat element from MDF, these elements are then splayed around a central axis to shape a complexly curved armchair. The back leg gradually morphs into the backrest and the armrest into the front leg, creating a distinct aesthetic entirely defined by the simplicity of the manufacturing process.
Design Challenges
Trying to get the correct shape for the main component was a challenge. As the repeated component for this design performs many tasks; the front end of it being both the armrest and the front leg and the back end of it being the back rest and the back leg. This meant a balance between the functions of the component had to be found. Its shape had to be just right.
Production Technology
CNC router, 9mm MDF. All components being identical, they can be economically laid out on a sheet of 8by4 MDF producing minimal waste. After being cut out each component is fed onto a metal pole that runs through the width of the chair, then splayed and fixed in place in order to achieve the desired aesthetic and comfort. Then the whole chair is primed and lacquered.
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