by Jules Kuijpers

This weeks drop is the second drop filled with amazing Eames designs, but sometimes they’re from Herman Miller where others are from Vitra. What is actually the difference of these two brands and how can they both manufacture the same designs? We’ll give you a short introduction into these two brands and how they can both manufacture the same designs. 

Herman Miller is the American manufacturer that worked tighter with Charles and Ray Eames to produce their designs. When Herman Miller asked the duo to design a more luxurious furniture in the early 1950s, they came up with the design of the Eames Lounge Chair. The design which is the only design lounge chair that doesn’t need an introduction, was inspired by the traditional English club chair, and Charles’s vision of was: ‘The warm, receptive look of a well-used first baseman’s mitt.’ The design lounge chair came together exactly as the Eames couple and Herman Miller wanted and started production right after. 
The demand for new luxurious design pieces wasn’t only for the US, but also in Europe demand grew right after the launch of the Eames Lounge Chair. Instead of shipping the chair intercontinental, Herman Miller selected a group of handpicked brands that were licensed to produce the Eames Lounge Chair for the European market. Vitra was one of these small group of brands that were allowed to start production on the Eames Lounge Chair. Decades later they are the only brand left that are licensed to produce Eames designs for Europe, the Middle East and Asia. Herman Miller continues to manufacture for the North and South American markets. 
So are there any differences in the Eames designs?
No, the designs are exactly the same, but the finish or materials might differ from time to time. As both brands have been producing multiple different designs from the Eames duo for multiple decades they both have used some different materials and small manufacture finishes. The overal designs are the same but there are some small details that show the differences. 
This drop we have two DCW dining chairs by Charles Eames from the same era, in the same material (Ash veneer), but one if manufactured by Herman Miller and the other one by Vitra. As you can see in the pictures you see a difference in color as they’re from different trees and maybe even a different type of ash wood that gives a different color over time. Besides that, we have seen two other details that are just a little different in the finishing of the product. The first one is the difference in the shock mount of the backrest. The Vitra chair has one large oval shaped shock mount while the Herman Miller chair has two separate round shock mounts. The second difference is the different bolts that are use for the front legs, the Vitra ones are sinked into the chair, while the Herman Miller one has bolts that are on top of the legs. These are just two small things that you will only see if you compare them to each other side by side. Overal the chairs are identical and both from the highest quality.