Charles Rennie Mackintosh Furniture Designs

Charles Rennie Mackintosh Furniture Designs

Charles-Rennie-Macintosh-Furniture-DesignsCharles Rennie Mackintosh is most well known for what is often called the ‘Mackintosh rose’. In his designs he often favoured strong, sharp right angles and softened these with floral motifs, like the rose.

The most well known Charles Rennie Macintosh furniture designs seem to be his high back chairs. However, he designed many buildings too. These included schools, offices, churches, tearooms and even homes.

He was born in Glasgow on the 7th June 1868. Anyone having visited Glasgow will surely have witnessed examples of his work.

One of the more popular schools he designed is the Glasgow School of Art. On a visit to Glasgow you may have walked past. However, the school hosts a Visitor Centre which has detailed plans and models of the construction and interior details for the Mackintosh building. It is well worth a visit.

If you have been a weary shopper in Buchanan Street or Sauchiehall Street you may even have popped into The Willow Tearooms. Both of these tearooms were designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh for Kate Cranston.

Glasgow has so many more examples of his work including the Scotland Street School Museum and the old Glasgow Herald offices, The Lighthouse. The Kelvingrove Museum in Glasgow has a full two rooms dedicated to his work.

In 1914 he moved, with his wife, to England. Initially they lived in Suffolk, where he was briefly suspected of being a German spy, and later they lived in London. He continued with a few more designs although began to devote more of his time to watercolour painting.

By 1923 they had moved to Port Vendres in Southern France, near the Spanish border. He spent several years here painting watercolours until he finally returned to London due to ill health. He died in London in 1928.

Although Charles Rennie Mackintosh furniture designs of the high back chairs and, of course, his use of the rose are what he is most well known for, he created so much more.


A Brief History of Chippendale and Office Furniture

A Brief History of Chippendale and Office Furniture

Thomas Chippendale is most well known as a famous London cabinet maker. He was actually born in Yorkshire about 1718 and died in London in 1779.

Early Life and Career

His father was a Yorkshire carpenter. Thomas an only child. There are no known details of his early career although it is generally accepted he began working with his father.

By 1748, at around the age of 30, he had moved to London and set up as a cabinet-maker.

The Gentleman and Cabinet-Maker’s Director

Thomas Chippendale came into prominence after publishing ‘The Gentleman and Cabinet-Maker’s Director’ in 1754. This was essentially a pattern book including designs in the Gothic, Chinese and French Rococo style. It was the first of its kind and the publicity brought Chippendale many lucrative commissions.

By 1755 Chippendale had a workforce of some 40 odd artisans. This included cabinet-makers, wood carvers and upholsterers. His company supplied a wide range of furnishings.

The Director publication was thereafter used by many cabinet makers around the world. Many pieces are recognised as Chippendale. However, this often refers to the style and does not indicate the furniture was made by Thomas Chippendale himself. In his latter life, within his own company, his workforce made the majority of furniture.

History of Chippendale and Office Furniture

And so to a brief history of Chippendale and office furniture. As previously mentioned, Chippendale did not only make cabinets.

A few years back a family-run solicitors office in the North of England decided after 80 years an update in their interior was necessary. Imagine their surprise when an old battered mahogany desk turned out to be a genuine Chippendale. The auction hammer finally fell to a grand total of £97,000. Estimated price after renovation was expected to be in the region of a quarter of a million!

You never know if you can hang around for 250 years that office desk you are sitting at could be worth considerably more!