Meet the designer behind the ultra-chic retro sofa from The Queen's Gambit

We thought we couldn't possibly love Beth Harmon's style anymore - then we saw her sofa

The Queen’s Gambit sofa, pink sofa designed in Berlin
(Image credit: Sternzeit)

The Queen's Gambit has an unrivaled reputation as the most stylish series of the year – if not the most stylish series ever. From its bold swinging '60s wardrobe to its jazz-infused soundtrack  – we're wholeheartedly and unashamedly obsessed with Beth Harmon's world and everything it involves. 

The backdrop to this world pays a stylish homage to mid-century modern home design  –  complete with diamond print wallpapers, curvy home cocktail bars, and colorful chairs that are a statement of the show. 

Cue, Markus Paulke, founder and designer at Sternzeit, the Berlin-based furniture manufacturers behind the chairs from The Queen's Gambit' set. Markus sat down with Livingetc to share more about the design process behind the most alluring sofa on Netflix. 

'We made the Retrostar Chair first, then after they sold, we thought it would be nice to make a sofa, so you can have more seating space if you need it,' Markus begins. 

The Queen’s Gambit sofa, Beth Harmon in hotel room

(Image credit: Courtesy of Netflix)

'After we finished the two-seater sofa [we decided] it was time to make a rocking chair because I love rocking chairs. Then we made a rocking sofa. We more or less design new things [by asking ourselves] 'what would be cool now?' So, it's quite unconventional. 

'It is important that we only make things that we really like, but of course, we always make them in the hope that other people will think the same,' he adds.

In case we didn't already love these chairs enough, Markus suggests that they are not only stylish but comfortable too, thanks to his heritage as a physiotherapist, which plays into his designs. 

'Since I am a physiotherapist, comfort was and is very important to me. I began to build furniture after I first moved into my own place at the age of 19 and realized that I couldn't afford all the furniture I would have liked to have. That was the trigger to make my own stuff.'

See: Living room ideas: 24 decorating tricks to inspire

The Queen’s Gambit sofa, black seat designed in Germany

Retrostar 2er Sofa, $642, Sternzeit

(Image credit: Sternzeit)

The designer revealed how his chairs had found themselves on the set of the most fashionable show on Netflix – sharing that it all began with a single call from the show's production company who 'asked how many Retrostar chairs we had.'

'They didn't know that we were making them ourselves and were quite amazed that we could make almost anything they wanted, in terms of upholstery, colors, and quantities very quickly. Then everything happened quite fast.'

'After a short production time, we delivered all the furniture directly to the Berlin filming locations, set it up, and picked it up again. Once we were allowed to watch the filming, which was super interesting.'

The Queen’s Gambit sofa on set in Berlin

Retrostar 4er Sofa, $973, Sternzeit

(Image credit: Sternzeit)

See: Best Sofa Bed: Most stylish design-led sofa beds

'The locations were great; I really like the series. Even if our furniture had not been there, I still would have binge-watched the show within 48 hours anyway,' Markus adds.  You can pick up these sofas via Sternzeit's online store, the chairs are also available via Iamfy

We'll be right back; we're just going to re-watch The Queen's Gambit to take some very important interior design notes. It's essential viewing, we promise. 

Megan Slack

Megan is the News and Trends Editor at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes. As the News Editor, she often focuses on emerging microtrends, well-being stories, and celebrity-focused pieces.

Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US whilst studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site.