Dezeen’s A-Zdvent calendar: Navy Chair by Emeco

Purpose-made seat pads for the chair were launched earlier this year so owners could finally avoid the shock of sitting on ice-cold aluminium. American company Emeco’s 1006 Navy Chair was conceived in 1944 as a strong, durable and lightweight seaworthy seat. Sales of the Navy Chair plummeted when the US military was significantly downsized at the end of the Cold War. The designs were hand-formed from soft, recycled aluminium and welded into shape. Dezeen is publishing an A to Z of   iconic chairs to count down the days until Christmas. Also this year, Japanese studio Nendo reimagined the iconic design as a range of stools and tables that Emeco launched in Milan. Catch up with the list so far » Now available in brushed or polished finishes, the Navy Chair is recognised by its simple silhouette, its trio of back-bracing elements and its indented seat. By 1950, the brand’s aluminium chairs were used to furnish many of the US Navy’s ships and submarines, including the first nuclear submarine, Nautilus. More recently the Navy Chair’s design has been the subject of legal and copying disputes. Emeco was originally set up to develop furniture for military ocean vessels. However, a series of new designs have been released by Emeco to compliment the original product. Online home rental brand Airbnb removed aluminium seats from its San Francisco headquarters after Emeco pointed out that the designs were knockoffs of the Navy Chair.

Updated: 14.12.2014 — 23:30