i never tire of a beautiful bentwood chair, or thonet as some are called. you can recognize the real thonets by signature steam bent legs, backs and braces on the legs, and a mix of birdseye cane and wood seats, and some even still have their original paper labels, which are so ornate and quite wonderful. michael thonet created the first thonet chair with its curved, graceful shapes by forming the wood in hot steam. the first thonet, or “coffee shop chair no. 14” was made in 1859! i’ve got a few vintage beauties around my dining table and i like them best when mixed and matched. they also look great all by their lonesome, say next to a bed as a kind of night (or book) stand, or in any empty spot just longing for a gorgeous statement chair. here are a few looks i find most inspiring. i sometimes find these vintage chairs for super marché at the french flea markets but if you’re on the hunt, check elsie green — they’ve got a few of these rare beauties in stock right now.