Bergère armchair with ears

Paris, c. 1760
Molded beech, wool velvet, iron
Bequest of Monsieur Bareiller, 1890
Inv. 5408
© Les Arts Décoratifs

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Upholstery became fuller in form in the mid-eighteenth century, with more padding and a lack of edges accentuated by the curves of the simply molded wood structures. The materials on this beautiful chair were used sparingly. The interfacing supporting the upholstery of the chair back is made from various fabric scraps sewn together, and the seat cushion and back are padded with plant fiber rather than horsehair (rarely used in the eighteenth century ).

This bergère is a precious example how furniture pieces were covered. The principal motif on the Utrecht (embossed wool) velvet is reserved for the chair back and seat cushion; the other parts are covered with the leftover material, with no particular concern for the pattern. One of the two wings is even covered with a different velvet.

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