Good Question: Chairs for Saarinen Table

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Hello AT,

I bought a beautiful Saarinen table (48" in diameter, veined white marble top) at an auction and have no clue what kind of chairs to get! I don't want to get the matching chairs because I feel that they will dominate the apartment (a studio). My table is also kind of my living room. I have thought about various chairs from Moss, DWR, mid-century stores... but everything is ridiculously expensive and I don't even like anything that much. Some runners up have included Thonet chairs, Wegner chairs, McCobb chairs..... any advice? thanks in advance!

We say your instincts are spot-on. As much as we love mid-century design, we know how a matched set like this one can risk dominating a space, particularly a small one. There's that great Emerson quote about consistency being the hobgoblin of little minds. So true!

If you're still undecided, you may want to go at this one chair at a time. The effect may be a little bit Alice-in-Wonderland, but in a good way if you choose carefully. If it's a set you're after, we say hit up Craig's list, keep an eye on Scavenger, and check back to see what advice your fellow readers have.

Happy hunting! PSM

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Maxwell left teaching in 2001 to start Apartment Therapy as a design business helping people to make their homes more beautiful, organized AND healthy. The website started up in 2004 with the help of his brother, Oliver.

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