Original vs Reproduction or Knock-Off
While searching for Modern Classic Furniture, you undoubtedly have encountered a wide gamut of offerings, from a variety of importers or distributors, all claiming to be the best. Consequently, you will hear words from various importers and distributors such as “Original”, “Knock-off” and “Reproductions”. In particular, some manufacturers speak about how they own the rights to a specific design and hold specific design patents for specific models. What should be made clear is that such manufacturers hold "trade name only" copyright for use towards a specific product design and/or have an agreement with a historical foundation to market under a specific name. They are not making an “original” production design under a technical manufacturing drawing at all; just their version of it with a “product name” copyright registration. There are a few exceptions, notably, Herman Miller and the Charles Eames iconic plywood arm chair. This item has been in continuous production at Herman Miller since it was designed in the 1950s and becuase of that, we don't make it, as it is not in the publis domain. The Eames Lounger was not a design that was created for a specific exibition or trade show such as the Mies van der Rohe Spanish Pavilion Chair or the LC2 Chair created by Le Corbusier for the 1929 Paris Furniture Pavillion. Once these latter items were shown, they were abondoned for over 30 years.
Here at Modern Classics Furniture, we are not just another website selling modern classic furniture reproductions - nor are we purchasing from a large network of contract manufacturers.We actually make the product. This is an important distinction.
The Modern Classic furniture pieces that we offer today have reached a state of “Public Domain”. Most, if not all of these designs, may have held only limited and narrow product design patent claims with 12 – 25 year patent authority. In fact, most of these designs held no design patents at the time of their market introductions which includes most of the furniture designs conducted by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Le Corbusier, Eileen Gray and Marcel Breuer, for example. All of the designs we offer have no current “technical manufacturing product design specific” registrations. This allows us to reproduce these items to the specifications of the original design, but not necessarily an exact replica due to current market expectations of comfort, environmental concerns, higher grades of raw materials and more modern manufacturing techniques. If we did produce some of the “original” designs to the original product blueprints from 45 – 80 years ago, we would be using mild steel tubing - perhaps spot-welded or bolted together, cushions stuffed of horsehairs and straw, etc. An actual “original” of any of the items that we produce would date back to the original production runs of the design, perhaps 80 years ago, and thus, are no longer in production from the original manufacturing factory today. To be clear, the “Originals” are near-priceless pieces of furniture found today in museums and exclusive private collections.
Modern Classic Furniture specializes in manufacturing and selling only in the highest quality, best value reproductions in the market today. We are not selling someone else's imported products, but our own manufactured pieces. Utilizing the expertise of master craftsmen, who join us from around the world, coupled with the best selection of raw materials sourced from around the world, we are able to bring you the best prices for high quality furniture craftsmanship you may find anywhere. To say our furniture models are “knock-offs” implies that someone else is making the “real ones” somewhere, which is, simply stated, not correct. We view our furniture models as setting a new, higher standard for Mid-Century Modern reproductions, but certainly not as a knock-offs.
Our Replicas or Reproductions
We are committed to duplicating the appearance, scale and function of the original designs of the Bauhaus / Modernist Classic Era as close as humanly possible. We take exacting measures to replicate the original design and use only the finest materials and craftspeople available. The end result is a high quality piece of furniture that equals or exceeds the manufacturing standards of the original. We offer a value that is in keeping with the original designers with the intent of bringing high quality furniture to the consumer at a price that is reasonably accessible to most furnishing budgets.