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Publication numberUS2541835 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateFeb 13, 1951
Filing dateDec 4, 1948
Priority dateDec 4, 1948
Also published asDE839078C
Publication numberUS 2541835 A, US 2541835A, US-A-2541835, US2541835 A, US2541835A
InventorsSaarinen Eero
Original AssigneeKnoll Associates
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Shaped chair
US 2541835 A
Abstract  available in
Images(3)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Feb 13, 1951 E. SAARINEN 2,541,835 SHAPED CHAIR Filed Dec. 4, 1948 Sheets-Sheet l INVENTOR.

EERO SAARINEN ATTORNEY Feb. 13, 1951 SAARINEN 2,541,835

SHAPED CHAIR Filed Dec. 4, 1948 5 Sheets-Sheet 2 I INVENTOR.

36M EERO SAARINEN ATTORNEY Feb. 13, 1951 E. SAARINEN 2,541,835

SHAPED CHAIR Filed Dec. 4, 1948 3 Sheets-Sheet 5 INVENTOR.

EERO SAARINEN ATTORNEY Patented Feb. 13, 1951 SHAPED CHAIR Eero Saarinen, Bloomfield ..Hills, .Mich,, I assignor .to. Knoll Associates, 1110,, N ewiYork, N Y.

Application December 4, 1948, Serial No. 63,460

.17 .Claims. 1 The present .=invention relates to articles of rfurniture, and more particularly to :an article of :furniture, wherein the-:seatrand the bacle-rest form portions of a shell -like body.

:An Tobject :of the present invention is -to "provvide ,an article of furniture :wherein the shelllike body scontaining tits seat rand back-rest -is :free \from :compoundly r curved surfaces present- .ingtwoidirnens-ionalcurves.

A further object of the present invention is ,to provide an i article .of furniture, the shell-like body of which containing tits seat and back-rest may able readily upholstered Without the -use of ,gussets.

,.Stil1.another =olojectv-of the .presentdnvention 1 to improve'onv {the .artqof articles of furniture -asnow.ordinarily;made.

With the ,aboverandrother. obj ectsvof: theinvens tion-inview, the.invention- ,consists in y the novel construction, arrangement and Combination of various elements and par-tsas describedhereinafter) and. set forth ,in :the claims hereof, :certain embodiments of the, same abeingcdesoribed in the .spevcification and being-illustrated-inrthe 284000111- panyingdrawingsiorming,part ofthisspecification, wherein:

Figul istasperspective .viewnfsaschair according totheinvention,

Fig. 2 'is a W perspective view of .the support carrying the ishe11=1ike .smainehody "of the vachair showninFig. 1,

'Fig. 3 is a top plan view of a blank which may the used. for .thermanufacture of -the .shelhlike .main-hody, of the chair shownin Fig.) 1,

- Fig. 4 is a front .elevational .view of. the chair -..shownin.l ?ig;.1,

-.Fig. .5 -,is a :side elevaticnal view 10f the chair r shownin Rigel,

Fig.6 ispa yerticaLsectional :view taken. on. line (Fig. '7 ish.a, pers.pectiverviewzof ,ablankrbentp into shape ,soas to .form \onerhalf .of the shell-like A main. bodyof a: chair according to the, invention, ,Figs. 3-10 "are diagrammatical illustrations .of the ,devrelopmentrof the. shell-like main hodyofta Lchair ,accordingto the vinvention w.from...a :cone,

nEighll .is va vertical sectional .viewsimilanto thatrshownflin-Fight, wherein, however, 15116811611- like main .hody .of .the-uchairais ,provided with upholstery, and

Fig. 12.. is v .a perspective view. of a; diifenent. embodiment of a ..chair "according .to .the .invention.

.Referringinow to. Eigs. 1, 2. and 4A5, :ZAL-generr ally indicates-a cradle-like support marryin =,the

shell-like main body 22 ot a chain As-bestshowninrEig. 2, thecradleelike support 26 is made of twovrods or tubular elements 24 and '26 :bent in suitable 'manner and connected -,with each tothe-r-at-their center portionby weldingl orrin anyother suitable Way.

The-shell-like main body {22 comprises a .-seatportion 28,-two arm-restsfill and 32 and a-backrest 34. Furthermore, said shell-like body ,2-2 is providedzwith an aperture 36 in its centermportion. Thesshell like'body 22 is of substantiallyruniiorm thickness throughout.

According to a characteristic feature of the invention, the surface of each area of thershell- ,Ii-keEbQdy-ZZ- adjacentsto-said aperture, 36- is traced .by a :str-aight-line generatrix whetherrthe area, foreXample-the area of the back-rest 34,-is curved or whether the area-forexample the upper sur- ;face-of :the arm-rests 130 and 32,-is substantially straight. Therefore, the overallsurface of the :shell-liker body-22 is freerfronr compoundly curved surfaces. insofar-as the shell-likelbody includes curved surfaces, they present .unidimensional .curves. For a better understanding of thischaracteristic feature of the shell-like body v2 2 of an article of furniture according to the invention,

reference is had to "Figsrfi-lfi which-illustrate the development of -thB1Sh611-1ik6b0d3 from a cone. As a 1 matter .of fact and as illustrated by Fig.

8, the-suriaceareaofa coneC is-traeed-bya surfaces, i.,e.,'intoashell-like body wherein the surfaces of all its areas-are traced by straightline generatrices and thecurvedsurfaces present mn-idimens-ional curves, 'all of its creases .rnust gcoincide :With a -generatrix emanating from its apex A. For-example, ifsuch a cone Oshould be deformed into a shell-like body free from -compoundlycurved-surfaces and of a shape as @shown inFigntQ, the cone C would have to be -.cr-eased at the lines L ('seeF-ig. 8). 'Theresulting .-she1l-like body zshown in Fig. 9 with. a seat-surface S,ar1n restsurfaces-R and a backrrestsurface J3, however, :would zbe impractical :for use as a ,memberof a t-chair, as all. of its creases =are directedtowardsthe apex A. In this way, for :eX-

to the cut-out aperture or opening are traced by straight-line generatrices G emanating from an edge of said aperture or opening 0. Thus, the shell-like body shown in Fig. 10, for example, is free from compoundly curved surfaces and, at the same time, gives sufficient room to accommodate comfortably the body of a person. Curved surfaces of the shell-like body shown in Fig. being conically shaped present unidimensional curves. As may be gathered from Fig. 10, the generatrices G do not have a point of intersection common to all of them, contrary to the shelllike body shown in Fig. 9. All compoundly curved surfaces, such as spherically shaped surfaces which would be caused by the direction of the generatrices G in the shell-like body shown in Fig. 10 are eliminated by the arrangement of the aperture or opening 0 which is at the place where otherwise compoundly curved surfaces would be found.

In a practical manner, the shell-like body 22 of the chair shown in Figs. 1 and 4-6 may be made from a band-like blank 22b of sheet material having a converging cut-out between its edges 38b, as shown in Fig. 3. Said cut-out converges from the exterior of the blank toward its center and merges into a single aperture having side edges M1) at first diverging away from and then converging toward the center of the blank; the inner edge 3% of said aperture connecting its side edges 4!!) is on the inner side adjacent the solid portion'of the blank outside the space embraced by said side edges. The sheet material of the blank may consist of a plastic or plywood or metal or any other bendable material. The blank 22b is bent in a suitable form into the desired shape of the shell-like body 22. The surfaces of its flat and/or curved areas adjacent to the aperture 36 are traced by straight-line generatrices, the curved surfaces presenting unidimensional curves. Upon suitable shaping of the blank 22b, the edges 3% thereof contact each other, the areas 28b form the seat portion, the areas 30?) and 3217 form the arm-rests and the area 341) forms the back-rest of the shell-like body 22. In the finished product, the contacting edges 38b of the blank 221) are connected with each other at the seam 38. This connection may be obtained by mechanical means, such as screws, or by the use of an adhesive, such as glue, or by a fusing process in case a thermoplastic material is used, or by any other suitable means.

Instead of bending the blank 22b by means of a form into the desired shape, its various areas could also be bent, one after the other, by suitable means into the shape desired.

Furthermore, instead of using a single blank 22b as shown in Fig. 1, it would also be possible to use several sectional blanks, for example two halves and bending each half either by a form or by other means into the desired shape as shown, for example, in Fig. '7. According to Fig. 7 the band-like blank 222m of sheet material used for forming one half of the shell-like body 22 of a chair according to the invention is shaped in such a way that its areas obtain the desired shape and that it is provided with beveled joining edges 38bit and 40th which in the final product may overlap corresponding beveled adjoinin edges of the other half not shown in Fig. '7. The two halves may be connected with each other at said beveled joining edges by means of an adhesive or screws or in any other suitable manner. Preferably, the band-like blank 222m of bendable sheet material is brought into the desired shape I34 thereof.

by bending same over a mandrel, which may be heated.

Furthermore, the shell-like body 22 of a chair according to the invention could also be made by placing plastic material intoa form or mold of suitable shape and shaping said plastic material therein. In such a case, an integral seamless shell-like body would be obtained.

As may be gathered from Figs. 1-6, the cradle 20 is shaped in such a way that its center portion 42 (see Figs. 2, 4, 5 and 6) supports the seatportion 28 of the shell-like body 22 and that its upper rear portions 44 and 46 (see Figs. 2, 4 and 5) support the laterally and outwardly projectin portions of the arm-rests 3i! and 32. Preferably, the remaining portions of the cradle 25 are not in engagement with the shell-like body 22. Thus, the shell-like body 22, which may not be entirely rigid in itself, may give to a certain extent under the load of an occupant and is yet sufficiently supported. The shell-like body 22 may loosely rest on the cradle 28 or may be attached to the latter by means of screws 48 as shown in the drawings.

As mentioned above. the shell-like body 22 of a chair according to the invention is free from compoundly curved surfaces. This feature facilitates to a great extent the upholstering of such a chair, which can be done without the use of gussets.

Fig. 11 illustrates a chair according to the invention wher in the shell-like body 22 is provided with uphol terv comprising a layer of foam rubher 5!! or the like and a laver of fabric 52. A portion of said layer of fabric covers the aperture 36 at the outside of the article whereby'a recess 54 is formed. capable of receiving a cushion 56 and holdin same in place. The chair shown in Fig. 11 is provided with anot er cushion 58 placed on the seat-section of the shell-l ke body 22.

Of course. if d sired. the upholstery of the shell-like bodv 22 of a chair according to the invention may be omitted and a piec of flexible material, such as fabric or a flex ble plastic or the like mav be attac ed to the article for merely coverin the apert re 36.

It is understood that the sha e of t e sh ll-like body 22 shown in the drawings represents only an example. The shell-like bodv 22 may be shaped in manv d erent wavs according to the same princ e, so that it is free from compoundly curved surfaces.

Furth rmore. the shell-like bodv must not neces arily incl de th arm-rests. Acco d ng to Fig. 12, for exam le, the shell-like bodv I22 of a c ir constitut s the seat I28 and th back-rest Said shell-like bodv I22 has also an aperture I3? in its center portion e tending from one side of the chair to the other. F rthermore. t e surfaces of all ar as of said sh ll-like bodv [22. are traced by straight-line generatrices,

so that the shell-like bodv is free from cornpoundly curved surfaces. The shell-like body I22 of the chair shown in Fig. 12 is supported by a plurality of legs 22! which may be either separate pieces connected to the shell-like body !22 or mav be members of a support connected to the shell-like body 522 in any suitable manner.

I have described preferred embodiments of my invention, but it is understood that this disclosure is for the purpose of illustration and that various omissions or changes in shape, proportion and arrangement of parts as well as the substitution of equivalent elements for those herein shown and described may be made without des parting from thespirit and scope of the-invention as set forth in the appendedclaims.

What I claim is: 1. In anarticleof furniture: a"shell-'like-:.-bo'dy including a seat and a back-rest, said-shell-like body having an aperture in its center portien and being composed of a' plurality of surfaces adjacent to saidaperture, at leastaportion of said surfaces beingcurved, and all of said curved surfaces presenting ,unidimensional curves, in ..-the di rection of their curvature andibeingstraced byza straight line. generatrix perpendicularto the edge of the aperture at' the point of intersection.

2-: In. an article of furniture: a shell-likezbo'dy including a seatand a back-rest, saidshell-like body. having an aperture in its center portion and being compcsedofa plurality .of surfaces. adjacent .to said aperture,ia, predetermined number of said surfacesbeing.c=.1rved,.the remainder of said surfaces being straight, and all of said-curved surfaces presenting unidimensional curves. in, the direction of their curvatureand being traced by a straight line generatrix perpendicular to the edge of the aperture at the point of intersection.

3. In an article of furniture as claimed in claim 1, a piece of flexible material covering said aperture at the outside of said article and being attached to said shell-like body whereby a recess is formed capable of receiving a cushion and holding same in place.

4. In an article of furniture as claimed in claim 1, upholstery applied to said shell-like body. a portion of said upholstery covering said aperture at the outside of the article whereby a recess is formed capable of receiving a cushion and holding same in place.

5. In an article of furniture as claimed in claim 1, said shell-like body including a seat, a backrest and arm-rests.

6. In an article of furniture as claimed in claim 1, said shell-like body including a seat, a backrest and arm-rests, aportion of said arm-rests projecting. laterally on each side of the article, and a separate supportimg cradle, said shell-like body resting on said cradle only at its seat and at its laterally projecting portions of the armrests.

7. In an article of furniture as claimed in claim 1, said shell-like body including a seat, a backrest and arm-rests, a portion of said arm-rests projecting laterally on each side of the article, upholstery applied to said shell-like body, a por tion of said upholstery covering said aperture at the outside of said article and being attached to said shell-like body whereby a recess is formed capable of receiving a cushion and holding same in place, and a supporting cradle, said shell-like body resting on said cradle at its seat and at its laterally projecting portions of the arm-rests.

8. In an article of furniture as claimed in claim 1, said shell-like body having substantially uniform thickness throughout.

9. In an article of furniture as claimed in claim 1, said shell-like body being made from an integral blank of bendable sheet material bent into shape, said blank having a cut-out converging from its exterior towards its center and merging into a single aperture having side edges at first diverging away from and then converging to. wards the center of the blank and having an inner edge connecting said side edges, and the edges of said converging cut-out being in adjacent position when the blank is bent into shape forming said shell-like body.

10. In an article of furniture as claimed in claim 1, said shell-like body being'made from an integral blank of bendable sheet --material bent into shape, said blank having a cut-out converging from its exterior towards its center and mer ing into a single aperture havingside-edges at sfirst diverging away-tram and then converging towards the center of the blankand having an inner edge connecting said side edges, and the edges of said converging cut-out being in adjacent position and being connected" with each other when the blank is bentinto shape-forming said shell-like body.

11.111 an article of'iurniture-as olaimed in .claim, 2, said shel-l l-ike body being made from an integral blank of bendable sheet material bent --into shape, said blank having a cut out converging froniitsexterior towards its center-and mer ing intoa single aperture having side edges at -fi-rstdiverging :away from and thenconverging towards'the center oftlie blank .and havinguan inneredge connecting said side edges, and the edges of said converging cut-out being in adjacent position when the blank is bent into shape forming said shell-like body.

12. In an article of furniture as claimed in claim 2, said shell-like body being made from an integral blank of bendable sheet material bent into shape, said blank having a. cut-out converging from its exterior towards its center and merginginto a single aperture having side edges at first diverging away from and then converging towards the center of the, blank and having an inner edge connecting said side edges, and the edges of said converging cut-out being in adjacent position and being connected with each other when the blank is bent into shape forming said shell-like body.

13. In an article of furniture as claimed in claim 1, said shell-like body being made from a number of sectional blanks of bendable sheet material bent into shape and connected with each other at adjoining edges.

14. In an article of furniture as claimed in claim 1, said shell-like body consisting of an in tegral seamles piece of material.

15. In an article of furniture: a shell-like body including a seat, a back-rest and arm-rests, said shell-like body being made from a blank of bendable sheet material bent into shape, said blank having a cut-out converging from its exterior toward its center and merging into a single aperture having side edges at first diverging away from and then converging toward the center of the blank and having an inner edge connecting said side edges, the edges of said coverging cutout being in adjacent position when the blank is bent into shape forming said shell-like body, a portion of said arm-rests projecting laterally on each side of the article, and a separate supporting cradle, said shell-like body resting on said cradle only at its seat and at its laterally projecting portions of the arm-rests.

16. In an article of furniture: a shell-like body including a seat and a back-rest, said shell-like body being made from a blank of bendable sheet material bent into shape, said blank having a cutout converging from its exterior toward its center and merging into a single aperture having side edges at first diverging away from and then converging toward the center of the blank and having an inner edge connecting said side edges, the edges of said converging cut-out being in adjacent position when the blank is bent into shape forming said shell-like body, a piece of flexible material covering at the outside of the article the :aperture for-med in said shell-like body by the :aperture of the blank, said piece of flexible material being attached to said shell-like body whereby a recess is formedcapable of receiving :a cushion and holding same in place.

17. In an article of furniture: a shell-like body including a seat, a back-rest and arm-rests, said shell-like body being made from a blank of bendable sheet material bent into shape, said blank having a cut-out converging from its exterior toward its center and merging into a single aperture having side edges at first diverging away from and then converging toward the center of the blank and having an inner edge connecting said side edges, the edges of said converging cutout being in adjacent position when the blank is bent into shape forming said shell-like body, a portion of said arm-rests projecting laterally on each side of the article, upholstery applied to said shell-like body, a portion of said upholstery covering at the outside of the article the aperture caused in said shell-like body by said aperture of l 8 the blank whereby a recess is formed capable of receiving a cushion and holding same in place, and a separate supporting cradle, said shell-like body resting on said cradle only at its seat and at its laterally projecting portions of the armrests.

EERO SAARIN'EN.

REFERENCES CITED The following references are of record in the file of this patent:

UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date D. 81,313 Whitman June 3, 1930 232,496 Heywood Sept. 21, 1880 251,903 Lewis Jan. 3, 1882 1,548,488 Schibrowski Aug. 4, 1925 2,343,077 Parrish Feb. 29, 1944 2,393,499 Flint Jan. 22, 1946 2,395,468- Eames Feb. 26, 1946 2,454,408 'Roth Nov. 23, 1948

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2678683 *May 10, 1951May 18, 1954Bargen William JamesChair and desk construction
US2698049 *Sep 8, 1952Dec 28, 1954Chester Lamb ClydeTable-arm chair
US2701607 *Mar 4, 1953Feb 8, 1955Andreef Alexis DChair with corded seat and back
US2719579 *Sep 20, 1950Oct 4, 1955Schaffer HarveyMetal chair
US2763318 *Jul 5, 1952Sep 18, 1956Knoll AssociatesFlexible contour chair
US2804915 *Mar 1, 1955Sep 3, 1957Knoll AssociatesArticle of repose for supporting the body of a person
US2818107 *May 19, 1953Dec 31, 1957Thaden Molding CorpChair
US2831534 *Feb 3, 1955Apr 22, 1958Thaden Molding CorpChair construction
US2984291 *Jun 1, 1959May 16, 1961Kostenborder Betty JoDemountable high chair
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US3009740 *May 15, 1957Nov 21, 1961Miller Herman IncChair
US3014762 *Nov 20, 1957Dec 26, 1961Mauser KgChair structures with shell-shaped seats
US3027195 *Dec 1, 1958Mar 27, 1962Miller Herman IncMulti-piece formed furniture construction
US3069204 *Feb 13, 1961Dec 18, 1962Vesterholt Inge KrabbeChair having a jointless seat
US3082037 *Oct 19, 1960Mar 19, 1963Howard W AndersonLock-joint chair
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US3325213 *May 17, 1965Jun 13, 1967Union Carbide CorpOne-piece cushioned chair
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US4368917 *Dec 20, 1979Jan 18, 1983Tachikawa Spring Co., Ltd.Vehicle seat member integrally formed of synthetic resin material
US5411316 *Oct 13, 1993May 2, 1995Westinghouse Electric CorporationSingle piece chair shell
US5810438 *Feb 14, 1997Sep 22, 1998Herman Miller, Inc.One piece molded seating structure
US6997513 *Nov 12, 2003Feb 14, 2006Salubrion LlcChair for healthy sitting
WO2005051130A1 *Sep 22, 2004Jun 9, 2005Salubrion LlcChair for healthy sitting
Classifications
U.S. Classification297/411.41, 297/452.14, 297/DIG.100, 297/DIG.200
International ClassificationA47C3/12, A47C31/12, A47C5/12
Cooperative ClassificationA47C5/12, A47C3/12, Y10S297/01, Y10S297/02
European ClassificationA47C3/12, A47C5/12