Robin Day – Designer in Focus

ROBIN DAY (1915 – 2010) and his textile designer wife LUCIENNE (1917 – 2010) transformed British design after World War II by pioneering a new modern idiom. He experimented with new materials in inexpensive furniture for manufacturers like Hille and more recently Loft.

As Britain’s most celebrated designer couple of the post-war era, Robin and Lucienne Day were – and are still – often compared to their US contemporaries, Charles and Ray Eames. However, their working practice was quite different. Whereas the Eames designed as a team, the Days mostly worked independently in separate fields. Placed side by side, Robin’s furniture and Lucienne’s furnishings are remarkably harmonious in ethos and aesthetic, reflecting the creative synergy between them. But it is important not to blur their identity and achievements. Assessed individually, the Days are both towering figures in their own right.

Like many architects and designers during the optimistic post-war period, the Days believed in the transformative power of modern design to make the world a better place. They rose to prominence during the 1951 Festival of Britain, which provided an ideal showcase for their talents. Lucienne’s arresting abstract-patterned textiles and wallpapers were displayed alongside Robin’s steel and plywood furniture in the Homes and Gardens Pavilion. Robin also designed the furniture for the Royal Festival Hall.

His furniture designs include the iconic Polo Chair. A true Design Classic, the Polo Chair with its many distinctive holes and range of bright colours. It is available with 4 different bases – the Skid BaseSled, 5 Star Office and 4 legged base versions. Available in 9 different shell colours and 4 different leg finishes it is also suitable for outdoor use. These chairs are still made in the UK on the original machine Robin Day designed in the 1970’s. Prices start from £80 which is amazing for such an iconic piece of furniture design.

Robin Day - Polo Chairs
Polo Chair in actors dressing rooms in an undisclosed location…
Polo Chair in restaurant setting
Polo chair is great for restaurant’s or cafes
Robin Day - Polo Chairs outdoors
Polo Chairs – perfect for the Outdoors
Polo chairs at the Barbican
Polo chairs and stools at the iconic Barbican in London
Robin Day Polo Chair and Vintage Desk
Polo Chair in Light Blue with a vintage desk – very cool
Polo Chairs in orange
Polo Chairs in orange
Polo Chairs
Retro looking yellow Polo Chairs – look at that floor, beautiful!

Few pieces of furniture combine the style and comfort of the Club Chair and Club Sofa. In 1962, Robin Day designed the Club range as Britains’ original “cube sofa” and the club chair was created as a modern take on the classic chesterfield design. The club range is 100% handmade in the UK.

Robin Day - Club 2 Seater Sofa
Club 2 Seater Sofa covered in Paul Smith fabric
Club sofa and footstool  by Robin Day
Club Sofa and footstool in green wool

Robin Day’s Leo chair gained iconic status when James Bond (Sean Connery) sat in one in the film You Only Live Twice (1967). The Leo chair and ottoman is made in England and is available in a range of leathers and fabrics.

Sean Connery in a Robin Day Leo Chair
Sean Connery in a Robin Day Leo Chair
Leo Chair and Ottoman on a swivel Base
Leo Chair and Ottoman on a swivel Base

Robin Day was more than a designer and we are proud to work closely with Loft to sell his designs to discerning buyers of all ages.

the team at Cimmermann

Credits:

Design Museum