Designer

Vitra, 2007.

Details

Alder wood bird in black lacquer with wire legs, £155, Vitra at John Lewis & Partners.

Background

Think of mid-century masters Charles and Ray Eames and chances are an image of their iconic Lounge chair and ottoman come to mind. But if you’ve ever seen the couple’s home in California or any of their product photo shoots in the Fifties, maybe you came over all aflutter remembering this cheeky chap too...

(Image credit: Simon Bevan)

The Eames House Bird, as it’s known, is not an Eames design, but, in fact, Vitra’s replica of a treasured artefact the duo had picked up during their travels. Sometimes referred to as American folk art, the original avian was a crow decoy used for hunting. But for the Eameses, it had a beautiful simple line, so they gave it pride of place in their living room and sometimes promo work – it even made the cover of the Architectural Review magazine in 1952.

Coincidentally, the original bird, created in Illinois around 1910, was the result of another husband/wife team, Charles and Edna Perdew. And although successful in its own right, thanks to Charles and Ray, our non-feathered friend has become a highly sought-after piece.

Now that’s something to tweet about.

See more twentieth and twenty first centurydesign classics here.