You’re Never Going to Believe It. Turns out it WAS Meant To Be.

So here’s a funny story.  If you’ve been reading along for the past few weeks you know the whole devastation I suffered over losing a perfect, vintage, replica Eames recliner.  If you haven’t read that tale yet, do so first.  We all wait here.

That chair will haunt me for the rest of my days and it’s the second thing to haunt  me from the Christie Antique show.  The first was a painting of a somewhat miserable looking elderly woman on a black background.

It’s a lesson in shopping.  If you get the butterflies in your belly, just buy it.  In a month you won’t worry about the money and in a year you won’t even remember how much it cost. It’s also a lesson in whether or not the saying “It wasn’t meant to be” is true or not.

I mean, that’s what everyone was saying to me after I went back to buy my chair only to find out it had been sold.

“It wasn’t meant to be.”

“You’ll find a better one.”

“It wasn’t meant to be yours.”

WHERE WAS THIS SUPPOSED CHAIR THAT WAS SUPPOSED TO BE MEANT FOR ME??  I  mean, ACK!

I’ve had alerts on Craiglist, Google, Ebay, Kijiji and Chairish for the past 3 years to notify me if my dream chair surfaces for sale anywhere.

It did once. A Plycraft replica of the Eames chair with a built in footrest.  The holy grail of iconic, mid century, moulded plywood, reclining chairs based on the Eames original … with a twist.  It showed up in Rochester, New York for around $400. I called the seller immediately, told her it was worth more than than that and offered her $600. I set up a time the next morning for me to make the roughly 3 hour drive across the border.  Then of course there would be 3 hours of driving back.

She called me the next morning and left a message saying she had lots of interest in the chair and she wanted me to give her my highest offer on it.  I said no.  What if I made my 3 hour drive and she told me someone else had offered even more money?  What if I got there and she already sold it?  I wasn’t getting into some bidding war with someone who had proven they’d go back on their word.

Since then my notifications have only brought in some sad looking fakes and a couple of people who saw my post on wanting the Plycraft recliner with built in footrest thinking I’d be willing to pay anything for it.  I am not. I’m willing to pay a fair price.

Then a couple of weeks ago,  just a few days after the Christie Antique show situation I got a notification.  There was an Eames replica lounge chair and ottoman for sale.  It was just in Toronto, an hour away. I clicked on the email to take a closer look a the chair.

It was the same style as the chair I saw at Christie’s.

It was the same colour.  The same condition. The same price.

It was the same chair.  I shit you not.

I looked like I’ve been drugged. Don’t I look like I’ve been drugged?

It turns out the guy who bought the chair got it home and decided it was too small for him.  After a few back and forth emails about the hilarity of him selling the chair from Christie’s and me mourning the loss of the chair at Christie’s he not only sold it to me, he delivered it.

I am the size of a very large groundhog, so the chair fits me perfectly.

It is easily the most perfect vintage replica I have ever seen.  The proportions and size are the exact same as the original Eames (which is much smaller than most replicas). The finishes are the same, as is the construction.

Notice the green crocodile suitcases I bought at the show as a consolation prize for losing my chair. They go well with it.

The only dead giveaway that this is a copy is the fact that it’s upholstered in dark brown, not black leather.

 

There’s only one problem with the chair.  Now I have to redo my entire living room around it.  I wish I could say I’m just joking but I’m not.

These are the things I still like in my living room.  My saddle and saddle stand, the white painted canvas, my lucite table with wood under it.  The end.

So I don’t need to change much else.  Just new rugs, a new coffee table, another chair, a new couch, a side table and artwork.

I’ve already put notifications on Craigslist, Ebay, Chairish and Kijiji.

 

As he was leaving, Serge, who sold me the chair,  looked back at it in my living a room and said, “You know I thought after so many years of searching that this chair was meant for me but now I understand t was meant for you.  Enjoy it.”

I will.  Just as soon as I replace every other piece of furniture in my living room. Ack.

Maybe this chair wasn’t meant for me.  Double Ack.

Since I saw Frasier lounging in it looking smart and superior I've wanted the classic Eames lounge chair.  Then I didn't want it because it was so popular.  Then I wanted it again.  It was the classic Elizabeth Taylor Richard Burton relationship.  Here's how we finally found each other.

108 Comments

  1. virginia ritchey says:

    wonderful!!!!

  2. virginia ritchey says:

    wow!!!!

  3. Elaine says:

    Wow! What a helluva story!! I’m SO happy for you, Karen! It looks fabulous and just “meant to be” in your living room … even though you say you need a new sofa, coffee table, rugs, side table, artwork and so on! You look very chic and sophisticated lounging in it!

  4. bev out west says:

    This is so cool. Yes It was meant for you. The other pieces of furniture, maybe they weren’t meant for you… happy replacing ♥

  5. Paula says:

    That is an awesome story! Yay, you got the chair.

  6. Gayle says:

    So, it was meant to be afterall… Enjoy. The chair and all the shopping you get to do now.

  7. Gayle says:

    So, it was meant to be after all. Enjoy your chair, as well as all the shopping you get to do now.

  8. Olga says:

    This is Unreal! You should play lottery. I never wanted chair like that but now I do. Even though I would need to redo my house inside out around it if I owned it lol
    I have a question regarding your cowhide… I’m assuming it’s real and not faux. Can it be cleaned (vacuumed)? Does it shed? I really want one, I just don’t want to make a mistake buying dead animal skin and regreting it later.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Olga. It is real (Ikea), it doesn’t shed and just last night my sister told me I had to replace it cause it was looking shabby. I vacuum it all the time and NOTHING stains it. I was just going to look into how I can clean it today. ~ karen!

      • Olga says:

        Wow I’m sold on it. Your Ikea store has pretty nice cowhide. I only saw brown and black at ours. I will be hunting for one now. Thank you. Maybe I have same luck as you did with your chair. Someone just shows up at my door with cowhide in their hands in perfect size and color haha

    • Lisa Bostock says:

      I have three cats and a dog who all love to throw up on my IKEA hide rug and I promise you, just like Karen said, NOTHING stains this thing!! You can vacuum it but sweeping it is even easier … I hosted mine down with a hose and left it in the sun to dry and it was perfect… it doesn’t shed at all!

      • Dana Hunter says:

        I agree–I have both a faux hide and a real hide and 2 pukey cats. The faux hide looks a hot mess–blotchy with stains, and nappy where it’s gotten wet–whereas the real hide still looks new–everything wipes up like it’s made of glass, and it suffers no damage from moisture. Authentic hide is the low-maintenance choice.

        • Robert says:

          Well, it’s not like nature would do something that needs to be treated like a baby besides actual babies. Although I did had a beautiful white hide with a gorgeous golden suede back that unfortunately was too old, shed like crazy and could not stand water

  9. WoooHOOO! That is a great story!

    Now the great recliner hunt has become the hunt for new living room things to show off the chair!

  10. attygreen13 says:

    Yay! We have one, and it’s the seat everyone fights over. So happy for you.

  11. Bronwyn David says:

    One door closes, another door opens. Or whatever. Have fun with the redecorating and, um, “be careful what you wish for”?

  12. Lynn Johanson says:

    Your panache totally matches that chair! It looks like it was made for you. I’m so glad it came your way again.
    So about that cane couch….. you’re trading it out?
    I’d like to buy it……..
    You may find that your readers are a ready made buying club for your excellent collection. I’ve been looking for a cane couch ever since I saw yours. I haven’t found one here in Seattle yet. I bet shipping would cost as much as the couch. Sigh.

    • Karen says:

      That’s the problem. I’ve held on that settee for years because I love it so much but have NOwhere logical for it to go. For now it’s in my office where it doesn’t really fit. ~ karen!

      • carswell says:

        Hah – I have a 1920s art decoish style hoosier cupboard that I scored at an auction over 30 years ago. I love it – but in the last round of redecorating my living room, I decorated myself right out of a place for it to live.

        I have no where else in my house for it to go – and since the winter it is residing in my shed. That’s not a great location for it but I haven’t had any luck selling it. Sigh.

  13. karen tomlinson says:

    My most sincere congratulations! I also dream for this chair, except in white.
    Seeing you in makes me happy!

  14. Sachi says:

    KAREN. Karen. What. Just. Happened!?! 😀 I am sitting here grinning like a fool! Best story ever. Thank you for brightening up my Monday morning.

    • Karen says:

      I know, right? SO strange. 🙂 ~ karen!

    • Ev Wilcox says:

      I know what you mean. I too got a big smile on my face when I saw her in that chair, and boy did I need that smile! It is beyond great when you can share in another’s good fortune! Yay Karen!

  15. Tina says:

    Oh my gosh, I am drooling with jealousy! Congrats!

  16. Jennifer says:

    I love, love, love this chair.

    Funny story. In January before I bought my new house, I lived in an apartment on the 3rd floor. One day while taking my dog out I fell down an entire flight of stairs and broke my ankle. I layed there crying out in pain, and for help.
    I had been stalking my first floor neighbor for months, literally for months. I would take my dog out at night so I could stare into her windows to get a glimpse of her chair, the exact one you have but in black leather.
    Ironically she was the one who heard my screams for help and came to my rescue that afternoon. She brought me ice, called 911 and stayed with me, holding my poor broken ankle steady until paramedics arrived. All I could managed to say to her, in all my pain was…I LOVE your Eames chair. She prob thought I was in shock, which I was..but still.

    Congratulations, enjoy your chair!

    • Karen says:

      LOL! I think that’s a perfectly normal thing to say. If someone said it to me while I held an ice pack to one of their body parts I wouldn’t think a thing of it, lol. ~ karen!

  17. MrsChrisSA says:

    Fantastic!!

    Drugged? No. Happy haze more like it!!

  18. You totally crack me up.

  19. Ellen says:

    NO!! don’t do it! go the eclectic look, meld it into your own look of “Karen, this is me” look I have this and now.. this and oh, look this. and I can add a picture of my chickens. and just wish I had some goats. those cute ones, yeah them and oh…. what about a donkey..

    • Karen says:

      I’m not getting furniture that “matches” the chair, but things have to “go”. As in the scale has to be right, the textures, and there has to be a certain amount of room for moving around within the room etc. Don’t worry I wouldn’t know how to decorate a room that wasn’t *me*. 🙂 ~ karen!

  20. TucsonPatty says:

    Whoopee! The end. I’m glad the story has a great ending!

  21. judy says:

    Wowzer! You were made for that chair. You now look like a Lady who has nothing more to do than relax and bask in her luck and her genius. I don’t know if i would decorate around it,let it be-a little back to the past moment with your more modern pieces. It really does take pride of place in the room,on the order of your Grand Lady. She looks out from her past with a story to tell-her dress,her wealth and social standing and I wondered if a little bit of sadness in her expression. Course you are the design maven and I am a 78 year old lady wishing I could get to sleep. On my third mattress by mail after my mattress was drowned by a burst attic pipe back in January. Can’t bring myself to buy the durn t-pedic. $$$$$$$$$$$$$$!

    • Karen says:

      I’m redoing the room to work the chair in. With the height and darkness of the chair other things in the room have to change. People think eclectic rooms mean just throwing anything you like in them but there’s a tiny bit more to it than that (not a lot more .. but still). Don’t you worry. ~ karen!

  22. RachelSD says:

    Karen, you look damn good in that chair.

    Bonus points for an even more awesome story than you could have ever hoped for to accompany your new (old) chair.

    Well done, Serge, well done.

  23. nancy w says:

    Omg I am so happy for you!!!! Chair chair chair chair the chair!!!!

  24. Love it!
    Now all you need is some ‘Horseman’s Onestep’.
    It will work on your saddle too!

    • Karen says:

      Ooooo. I’ve never used that but I see it’s made by Absorbine. Does it smell like Absorbine? I would actually love that, lol. I’ll take a look at my local tack shop for it. Which also doubles as my chicken feed store. ~ karen!

  25. Kim says:

    YIPPEEEEEEEEE!

    just goes to show we were all right. I love it. Truth be told, more than the other one you want. Shhhh. I said nothing.

    Now I just need to find the same chair for me. In cream. 😘😍

    • Karen says:

      I still like the other one based on the fact it doesn’t have a footstool. The footstool takes up a LOT of room. But yes, the construction of this one is MUCH better. ~ karen!

      • K says:

        Well. You are redoing the room anyway. 😆😆

        Which. Btw. I legit understand. I’ll often buy a new piece of furniture/art and be like “oh no. What have i done? The whole room needs to change!” 😂😂😂

        But eventually it does and works out perfectly. If it something you love it all comes together in the end. And if you experience is anything like mine, in the next while you’ll find more wonderful items that work with your chair and make it feel like it’s home in your house.

        • Karen says:

          LOL. Most people can understand the horror of bringing something new home only to realize it’s turned into a 3 day redecorating event to accommodate it. ~ karen!

  26. Anne Faught says:

    Oh! It WAS meant for you. It is meant for you. Give it a little time in the space. Then decide. You already didn’t like your couch much……..
    It’s a wonderful tale of lust fulfilled in a round about fashion. I am still lusting after the tramp art framed mirror I did not grab immediately at the thrift store………… Maybe I’ll find it in a yard sale this summer…

    • Karen says:

      “Maybe I’ll find it in a yard sale this summer…” that’s what I’ve been hoping for the past decade or so, lol. And yes, I hate my couch. ~ karen!

  27. Emie says:

    WOW!!! Just, WOW!!!

  28. Linda Bryant says:

    So happy for you! All good things come to those who wait….

  29. Marna says:

    Awesome! You look great in it! It is beautiful. 🙂

  30. Heather says:

    Sounds like fodder for a romantic comedy. Even the name “Serge” works!

    Your chair is beautiful and it suits you. Congratulations! I have a feeling you’re going to have fun redecorating and we’re all going to love what you do.

    • Monica says:

      I agree, you should stay in touch with Serge. Maybe fate had more on hand for you than the chair. 😉

      That said, don’t redecorate the whole room! You crazy minx! Just live with it for a bit. I think this is a knee jerk reaction that is just you finding it hard to live with your own happiness.

      • Karen says:

        No, lol. I’ve never been happy with the living room anyway. And I only liked my couch for about the first year. So … here we go! ~ karen

    • Brenda says:

      Yep…I agree! I was just wondering if Serge was single. Because if that chair brought them together it would make a cute story!!!

  31. Lez says:

    Unbelievable story Karen! Fabulous news!
    I also love your suitcases. The name “Kevin {something}” intrigues me. If it is an unusual surname, you may be able to trace him, & find out the history of the case & its travels!
    It’s always great to learn the history & story of your antiques, as it adds to the ‘intrigue’ factor!
    Case in point; (excuse the pun!) your gorgeous chair! 🙂

    • Karen says:

      I Googled his name last night and couldn’t come up with any possibilities that made sense. Unless it belongs to a new young opera singer by the same name. ~ karen!

  32. Elissa Rioux says:

    Dreams really do come true! Happy it was yours.

  33. Susan says:

    I was already smiling at ‘Remember that chair’? I love happy endings. Lets hope a black leather one doesn’t come around now. Or do we???

  34. Diane says:

    When I saw the title of this post, I said NO WAY! It can’t possibly be THE chair!!
    I am thrilled for you and you do look perfect in the chair.

  35. Kim C says:

    Crazy!! Now you have a great story to go with your fabulous chair.

  36. Nicole says:

    Wait, did you say you need ANOTHER chair now? Please say you’re not thinking it also should be an Eames, because there’s lucky, and then there’s downright nutty. 🙂

    So happy for you and your new acquisition! One of these days I’ll make it to the Brimfield Fair (which is the New England equivalent of Christie’s… except the name doesn’t conjure up the image of cookies for me; Mr. Christie, you make good cookies).

  37. Lynne H says:

    I LOVE life’s ‘magical moments’ like this!
    Makes you believe there really is some grand design!
    🙂

  38. Arlene Stopps says:

    Funny, funny,funy!
    Great story!
    So glad it came back to you!
    It probllaby just looks fantastic in your house so just wait til you get used to the new look! Perfect!

  39. Marilyn says:

    Well sometimes karmas a bitch and then sometimes she’s just really cool. Great story and an even greater ending. Really happy for you Karen

  40. Claire Bickley says:

    If this was a romcom, you and Serge …

  41. Karen, your patience and determination paid off! I’m really happy for you!! That is one amazing story!

    We will all look forward to your re-decorating project.

    Next Christie Antique Sale is only 3 months away!😆

  42. Jody says:

    I am so happy you got the itch scratched. What’s itching you now? The rest of your livingroom?

  43. Ev Wilcox says:

    Yay! You look great in that chair! Have fun with the next pat! Oh, and thanks to Serge, who must be a decent human! well done both of you!

  44. Suzannelh says:

    Hot diggety damn.
    Enjoy!
    And maybe reupholster the couch, that’s slam dunk easy.

    • Karen says:

      The fabric on it is actually perfect, lol! It’s the shape, size and comfort of it that I don’t like. :/ ~ karen!

  45. Katie C. says:

    I’m not ashamed to admit that I got goosebumps and a little teary with joy when reading this. I’m so happy you finally got your chair!

    Now I can’t wait to see what you get to go with it.

  46. jaine kunst says:

    No, that chair was DEFINITELY meant for you! And so what if you need to do your living room over. We will all be along for the journey and it will look better than ever.

    Very good advice about shopping…if it gives your belly butterflies, buy it. I still mourn a red handbag I walked away from 12 years ago.

    Enjoy your fabulous chair, Karen. What a great story!

  47. Trish Kinnee says:

    I love it — the story and the chair! My daughter loved anything Eames and tried to get me to buy an expensive and replica. Ah. No.
    FYI, she did inform me the other day that The Henry Ford near Detroit has an Eames exhibit. We are an hour north of that right across from good old Sarnia, so we’ll do it!
    That is YOUR chair!

  48. Heather says:

    Fandamntastic! So happy for you, Karen! Enjoy your chair and all of the re-decorating shopping!

  49. Sarah Baranek says:

    We had original Eames chairs on 5th Av, NYC. They were BROWN leather, not black. And they were, in fact, original — you could order them anyway you wanted back then.

    Just sayin’.

    • Karen says:

      Brown? Or caramel? The caramel colour is my favourite actually, but from any research I’ve done they say brown (a very dark brown like mine) wasn’t an option. ~ karen!

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