The design and craftsmanship of sheep leather furniture was perfected in Holland and spread to other countries like France and England. In terms of construction, the framework for sofas and chairs were first constructed in mahogany, a preferred hard wood, and then upholstered in 100% natural sheep leather, carefully chosen over cow leather because of its enduring, unique, rich and buttery patina. Nico Van Oorschat, the noted Dutch designer of these chairs was well known for the careful selection of hides used to upholster his furniture as well as his insistence on hand craftsmanship in the production of his designs.
By the end of the 19th century a small number of designs became classics, repeated over and over again with individual twists incorporated by designers and manufacturers. These little “twists,” subtle variations in size, material selection, and invisible interior construction such as eight-way hand-tied coils under the cushion, were capable of rendering any individual piece a true work of art as opposed to a simple piece of furniture. Those designed by Van Oorschat displayed an inordinate amount of nuance, which furthered his reputation as a leading Dutch designer. If you look closely at the nail pattern on these chairs, the vertical rows always end above the legs with a horizontal pattern extending outward. This little design twist has been compared to a signature on Van Oorschat originals. Nico Van Oorschat passed on in 1997. These chairs were created circa 1960.
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