Eclectic style – vintage cinema seats

5/18/2016 06:29:00 am HELEN STILES 1 Comments

Oh's been a while. Several weeks seem to have skipped by and I've been rather quiet on the blog front. I can assure you I haven't been sitting around with my feet up, it's been pretty busy elsewhere! With one interior design project drawing to a close and an exciting project for a well-known restaurant brand just completed I finally feel as though I can find 5 minutes to blog again. This isn't how blogging is supposed to work, (it's all about consistency and commitment, I know, I know) but hey, sometimes work and life get in the way (in a good way!)

I can't wait to share more details of the completed projects, but you'll have to wait a while for those. So today I thought I'd talk cinema-seats. Lovely, quirky, vintage ones to be precise.

I've got a bit of a crush on vintage cinema seats at the moment (and I do mean vintage – please don't leave the 'vintage' off your google search or you'll find all sorts of enormous, shiny, ugly reclining monstrosities!) But salvaged 20th century cinema seats are definitely the interior-addict's friend.

Firstly,  there are plenty of them available – due to the huge number of cinemas that have either closed or been refurbished in the past 20 years. Secondly, they are usually pretty comfortable (they were, after all, designed to be sat in for several hours at a time – back in the day when your average film lasted 4+ hours, rather than the paltry 90 minutes the modern attention span demands!) Thirdly, they are flexible (you can join together as many cinema seats as you want to fit your space). Fourthly, they are pretty affordable compared to your average brand new chair (I know fourthly sounds weird, but I'm on a roll here...). And finally – they are just cool! I mean who wouldn't want a quirky little piece of 20th century history in their house?

I'm seriously considering a row of these along one side of our rather plain dining table. I've been pondering a built-in banquette for ages, but I'm not sure I want to commit to a huge (and expensive) piece of furniture that I can't easily move. Plus the wall in our kitchen is where I do a lot of the photo shoots for the website, so it wouldn't be hugely practical! But a row of lovely old cinema seats might just be a good compromise. Characterful enough to add some interest; comfortable enough to be sat on for extended dinners...and affordable enough to fit the non-existent budget!

So here's a bit of vintage cinema seat interior design inspiration. What do you think?

Option one, cinema seats in the dining room...

Image: via sfgirlbybay

In this example the cinema seats have had castors added to the bottom for ease of movement (that's probably one idea I'd skip if you have children...I can just imagine the fun my two boys would have trying to use that as a giant skateboard!)

Image via

Or how about cinema seats in the hallway? They make the perfect perch for zipping up your boots before you leave the house, dumping your shopping bags after a day of retail therapy (or just racking your brains for where you last put the keys down)!

Image left: Image right: Paul Raeside via pinterest

Cinema seats at the end of a bed make a great alternative to a bench, as proven in this design by Emily Henderson. Obviously it helps if you have the room!

Image: via

The passion for using recycled and repurposed items in interior design shows no signs of stopping –and whilst we might all love a bit of mid-century furniture, the good stuff is now increasingly hard to come by (not to mention hugely expensive). So the humble vintage cinema seat is a great alternative. There are plenty available on eBay, Etsy and at auction, and a wide variety of styles – from original cushioned velvet to simple wood or designs reupholstered in funky fabrics. Whatever your style, the vintage cinema seat is perfect for adding an eclectic yet practical touch to your home.

I'll be back later this week with the next – and somewhat overdue – instalment in my cali-cool design school series – global textiles. Until then, happy hunting!

1 comment:

  1. How fun! Sadly, I don't have room at OneandSeventy for any of these, or I'd be straight on 'tinternet searching for some!