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Set of Four Frances Elkins Loop Arm Chairs

$12,950per set

About

A fabulous set of four Frances Elkins loop chairs. The armchairs are based on the 1930’s iconic models. This set of vintage chairs were made in the mid 20th century and have been professionally restored and painted in a matte white finish. Newly upholstered drop-in seats in a pale grey silk velvet.

Details

  • Creator
    Frances Elkins (Designer)
  • Dimensions
    Height: 37.25 in (94.62 cm)Width: 27 in (68.58 cm)Depth: 22 in (55.88 cm)Seat Height: 19 in (48.26 cm)
  • Sold As
    Set of 4
  • Style
    Hollywood Regency (Of the Period)
  • Materials and Techniques
    Upholstery,Wood,Lacquered
  • Place of Origin
  • Period
  • Date of Manufacture
    Mid-20th Century
  • Condition
    Reupholstered.
  • Seller Location
    Lambertville, NJ
  • Reference Number
    Seller: NF1stDibs: LU1308228573892

Shipping & Returns

  • Shipping

    Ships From: Lambertville, NJ
  • Return Policy

    A return for this item may be initiated within 3 days of delivery.

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About the Designer

Frances Elkins

Although she doesn’t have the name recognition of Syrie Maugham or Elsie de Wolfe (known as “the mother of interior decoration”), American designer Frances Elkins was one of the most prominent grand-dame decorators of the first half of the 20th century, and arguably the most influential on the West Coast.

Born into a prosperous Milwaukee family in the clothing business, Frances Elkins, née Adler, might never have ventured outside of Wisconsin were it not for her older brother David. After graduating from Princeton University, he decided to tour Europe and study architecture there, and he brought his teenage sister along. The experience was life-changing. Adler was deeply inspired by the classical architecture he saw, while his sister was captivated by the future-looking art they encountered.

After three years abroad, Elkins returned to the States. In 1917, she married Felton Broomall Elkins, a wealthy Philadelphia–born playwright and polo player who took her to live by the sea in Monterey, California, where many of their society friends were building houses in nearby Pebble Beach. The couple bought a derelict 19th-century adobe mansion, Casa Amesti, that Elkins planned to renovate with her brother, who had established an architecture practice in Chicago designing stately homes. Elkins insisted it would be the most attractive home in northern California when she and her brother were done.

Adler understood just how to mix architectural languages to create spaces of drama and interest. Elkins, meanwhile, enlivened the rooms with a decorative mélange of French and English period furnishings along with Chinoiserie, all within a brilliant color scheme of yellow, blue and white, and arranged in the symmetrical settings her brother favored. When they were finished, Elkins was proved right — Casa Amesti was unlike any other home in northern California. It was fresh and sophisticated, warm and inviting.

One of Elkins’s first commissions was decorating the Monterey Colonial of her good friend Hester Griffin. For the living room, Elkins selected Chippendale furniture, Queen Anne mirrors and Ming screens in a stylish palette of bone and black. To give the space a contemporary twist, she added very new and daring lamps by Jean-Michel Frank and covered the scoop-back sofa and armchairs with peach corduroy, a material which was plush yet utterly unconventional as a furniture covering. It started a trend.

A savvy businesswoman, Elkins recognized commercial opportunities when she saw them, and so eventually became the first American importer of French country antiques, as well as the sole distributor of the furnishings of Frank and Alberto Giacometti in the States. She collaborated with both of these major talents on several designs.

Throughout the 1920s, Elkins decorated a host of other houses around Pebble Beach. Her local work culminated with her design of what was to become the legendary golf club, Cypress Point. She decorated the clubhouse interior in tones of beige, yellow and melon and furnished the rooms with French Provincial pieces, creating spaces that were gracious yet informal.

Eventually, Elkins opened her own workshop, where a staff of artisans reproduced favorite furnishings, lighting and accessories, in addition to realizing her own designs. Ironically, the Loop chair for which she is best known is an 18th-century design, which she reproduced only twice for the “living porch” of Mrs. Marshall Field on Long Island and the living room of the Wheeler house in the Chicago suburbs.

By the 1930s, Elkins was working frequently in San Francisco, decorating interiors for some of the city’s most prominent families, as well as designing a number of commercial projects, including the Yerba Buena Club for Women. Again, her approach was eclectic and bold. She renewed the club’s waiting room and lounge, by covering the Victorian-style seating in audacious reds and blues. And while she paid tribute to Frank in the design of the minimalist dining room’s staircase, seating and torchieres, she also splashed it with color by covering the walls in yellow velvet.

Sadly, Elkins and her brother both died relatively young in their mid-sixties. Yet not before contributing significantly to what would become cosmopolitan American style.

Find vintage Frances Elkins furniture on 1stDibs.

About the Seller
4.9
Located in Lambertville, NJ
Platinum Seller
These expertly vetted sellers are 1stDibs' most experienced sellers and are rated highest by our customers.
Established in 1985
1stDibs seller since 2015
883 sales on 1stDibs
Typical response time: <1 hour
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