Womb Chair

Knoll Portraits Vol.7 — Icons

“Today, more than ever before,
we need to relax.”

Eero Saarinen

Womb Chair — Inspirations

Womb Chair Designed by Eero Saarinen, 1946

Revolutionary in 1948 and resonant today in homes, workplaces, and the cultural zeitgeist, the Womb Chair persists as a ubiquitous beacon of comfort and icon of modern design. Designed for Florence Knoll by Eero Saarinen, the Womb Chair defied conventions of what a chair could be—from the feminist instinct that sparked its inception to the materials and construction that shaped its organic form.<br>The chair debuted in 1948 as the Model 70, and Eero filed a patent for his “shaped chair”. The organic form and liberating comfort earned it a nickname later officially adopted—the Womb Chair—and spurred a quick ascent to popularity.

Womb Chair — Cabinet of curiosities

Womb Chair Designed by Eero Saarinen, 1946

At the helm of Knoll, Florence fostered an impressive cadre of creative collaborators—often former colleagues from the Cranbrook Academy of Art, like Eero Saarinen—and set their talents free with a design vision guided by her meticulous eye and pioneering spirit.
The lounge chairs of the ‘40s encouraged society’s expectations of how a woman should sit: upright, ankles crossed, hands folded. Florence had a different idea.
“I told Eero I was sick and tired of the one-dimensional lounge chair…long and narrow. I want a chair I can sit sideways in or any other way I want,” she said of her 1946 request. Her friend and collaborator agreed, noting the need for a “large and really comfortable chair to take the place of the old, overstuffed chair”—one that would suit the look of their own modern interiors.

Womb Chair – Moodboards

In keeping with the philosophy of “Modern Always”, Knoll has created a collection of products capable of perfectly interpreting the brand’s values: timeless image and the coherent design with which the company has always been identified, skillfully combining uniqueness and comfort. Knoll’s revolutionary idea was, from the start, not to think about the individual furnishing element, but about the space. This approach led to products where functionality and aesthetic value are on the same level. Pieces designed in different periods of time, but belonging to the same design philosophy, the one started by Florence Knoll who adapted Modernist principles to create a new “total design” approach.