“Why is Mid Century Modern Furniture ‘So Expensive?'”


Julian Goldklang, core77 23/3/2017


Scandinavian pieces produced in the 1950s and 1960s were made in factories like Carl Hansen & Son, Slagelse Mobelfabrik, CFC Silkeborge Mobelfabrik, etc. out of the best quality rosewood and old growth teak hardwoods. These pieces were handcrafted by artisans who had 20 to 30 years of cabinet making experience under their belts, and their customers paid good money for heirloom pieces that they would own for the rest of their lives.

As proof of the quality, look at the condition these pieces are still in after nearly half a century of everyday use. Look at a piece made in the 1950s or 1960s and you’ll see that structurally and cosmetically, they’re almost always in excellent shape. Well cared for, they will last you another 40 – 75 years.

Additionally, most new production knock offs are made in low-cost factories overseas using low-quality materials. These pieces are merely mirroring the look of good design, without having put in the work to understand ergonomics, craftsmanship, functionality and form. Sitting in an original Arne Jacobsen Egg chair versus a cheap new production “Egg” chair from China, you will instantly be able to tell the difference in comfort and quality.

There are current manufacturers offering that “mid century look” for a bargain basement price, and those manufacturers have set the quality and price bar for furniture extremely low, creating an unrealistic standard for what people believe should be the average price for a “good” piece of mid century furniture.

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