A Chair Once and Forever: The Windsor Chair by Frits Henningsen

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Mid-century Danish design surprises us time and time again with its ability to stay relevant. The Windsor Chair (FH38) by Frits Henningsen, designed in 1938, exemplifies this rule with its re-launch by renowned Danish cabinetmaker Carl Hansen & Søn.

Influenced by French Empire, Rococo, and 16th century English furniture styles, the Windsor Chair manages to combine decorative, classic styles with the more minimalist look of Danish design.

The high back ensures comfort thanks to the angled braces, while also giving it a slightly more grand silhouette than your typical dining chair.



There are other “windsor chairs” throughout history that share a similar look, though the exact origin of the design is vaguely attributed to 16th century British wheelwrights. By the 18th century, steam-bending was being used to create the rounded back of the chair, making it possible to produce them on a larger scale. It is in this tradition that Henningsen developed his own take on the classic piece.

Just one look at the FH38 Windsor Chair and you’ll see that Henningsen himself was a skilled carpenter. The chair, though it may look simple, is actually quite complicated in its assembly, requiring skilled joiners to take on the task. The upper sides of the armrests are hand-sanded, so each chair is slightly unique and is truly handcrafted. As a result, the chair was taken out of production for a period of time.



The re-launch celebrates the identity of the chair, letting it speak for itself with high quality oak and traditional carpentry techniques.

“The chair is very sculptural, and the back is taller than necessary for an ordinary dining chair. It thus appears as a fusion of a dining chair and a lounge chair, making it very versatile and comfortable to sit in. Especially with the newly developed, soft seat cushion,” says Knud Erik Hansen, CEO of Carl Hansen & Søn.



Windsor Chair Specs

Seat height 45 cm
Height 100 cm
Depth 67 cm
Width 60 cm

Chair: Oak
Cushion: Leather

Buy the Windsor Chair

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Rebecca Thandi Norman

Rebecca Thandi Norman is a co-founder and Editor-in-Chief at Scandinavia Standard.