Nov 1, 2007

The Marais AC Chair and other Tolix furniture


I first posted about the Marais AC Chair in April, but I've noticed since then that people almost every day are searching for this chair and landing on my site. In an effort to expand my last post I wanted to say that first off, the colors and range of the sheet metal furniture produced by Burgundy artisan, Xavier Pauchard, are not limited to the three colors that are exclusive to DWR (lemon, vermillion, gunmetal) and not limited to the rage in sizes and shapes there either (there's also the A56 chair, the A97, the A, the T4, and more)—although DWR did chose great colors and iconic pieces.

Xavier Pauchard created this metal furniture line, made of buckled sheet, in 1934 for Tolix, a French company that manufactures its own products and distributes in France and abroad. While today the chair may conjure images of quaint caf├ęs, DWR states that "it's rumored that Xavier Pauchard's Marais AC Chair was created for use in the weather forecasting room on a battleship...We do know that after its possible time at sea, the Marais was supplied to bars and brasseries by breweries in exchange for selling their beer. This arrangement ended in the 1970s, but that didn't stop the demand for these durable chairs and stools made in France." In fact, the chairs were reissued in 1986 where it found a serious fan base consisting of deign fanatics, many who scour the French countryside in search of originals.
I got hooked on the idea of finding some vintage Tolix chairs (what if they were really on a battleship!) and found some great looking stools and chairs on sites like ebay. Below is one of the original versions of the Chaise A, which because it's stackable and durable, is said to have been used in crew quarters aboard the ocean liner Normandie. You can purchase Tolix chairs at DWR, Conran (although I think they only carry a stool), Graham and Greene, and you may be able to order one from Tolix. Prices range from about $140-$220 new. Also, if you plan on being in Paris anytime soon, A Tolix exhibition is on view at the Centre Pompidou through 2008.

25 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the info! I've been looking for these chairs for about a year...now, thanks to you...I'm on it!

Sacha said...

You can also find Tolix furniture on the french site www.atmospherique.com.

We carry the A, A56, H75 and H45 models and ship worldwide.

Anonymous said...

Conran's in the US sells a Tolix chair at 25.5 inches and 23.5 inches clearly much better heights for a kitchen island. Are these authentic?

Lizzie said...

I don't know how you mean "authentic" exactly, but my guess is that Conran isn't selling any fakes. Perhaps you meant, is it true to the original—and that I don't know I'm afraid. Sorry. :)

Kate said...

Pottery Barn is now selling authentic Tolix side chairs in 5 colors as well.

ita darling. said...

hmmm. pottery barn is not authenticating these as tolix... im wondering if they are.. and the price is about $180/ ea. less than everyone else in the market..

nicolecthomas said...

it looks like pottery barn mentions tolix in the product write up... see below link

"Since the 1930s, these French-made chairs – produced by the well-known company Tolix – have been adding style to dining spots from bistros to back yard. Built of galvanized steel and fitted with rubber feet to prevent scratching."

http://www.potterybarn.com/products/p10395/index.cfm?cm%5Fsrc=rel

Anonymous said...

They can also be purchased from the Sundance cataglog and they are the authentic Tolix ones...

IRENE said...

Thank you. The Tolix has been in my dreams,day and night!

Christopher Keiser said...

I can confirm that the Pottery Barn chairs are authentic Tolix. I am living in France and I know the person responsible for sourcing them.
For those who question the low cost, perhaps you should question the high cost elsewhere. When it was a hard to acquire product, naturally boutiques who were not able to get high volume price breaks, would need to charge more than usual mark-ups.
I have several of the stools, without the backs, stacked up in my kitchen. Just love 'em, gonna order some more shortly.
-Christopher

Ashley said...

I'm desperately trying to find four of these without having to spend $1000. :) Pottery Barn no longer carries them, and DWR wants $250 per. Even Sundance's $195 per chair is a bit steep for me. Is there any restuarant chair source that makes them? I'm willing to try a knockoff...

Anonymous said...

Pottery Barn still has them in Yellow. Yellow was not my first color choice (orange or red would be) but it is nice and sunny. They are only $100 which is a steal. I do like the chairs a great deal but would never pay a large amount as they are not substantive. I may paint mine some day.

quietly going mad... said...

Looks like Pottery Barn is bringing them back. You can order them (well all except the Turquoise) but they don't ship until February 2009. I have been searching for these cheaper then Sundance too and somehow came across Pottery Barn again and was very happy with the news. For that price I can wait.

Anonymous said...

Use caution with Pottery Barn. I ordered 4 yellow chairs (happened to be my first choice) in September and received a weekly backorder email from PB. Today, I received an email that said the yellow chairs were no longer available. This email came a week after I was assured that it may take time, but all orders will be fulfilled. I'm worried that PB will unceremoniously yank the chairs before they are delivered in February.

Dana in Pittsburgh said...

Regretfully Pottery Barn did just that - yanked these chairs without fullfilling the Feb 2008 backorder. I literally purchased the entire Chandler suite for our new dinig room including 10 of these gorgeous Tolix A chairs in gunmetal finish. Anyone have any leads on a new source for these? La Redoute UK site offers them - but won't ship to the states.

Melissa said...

There is a new place called Antiquaire in the Chicago area that can order anything from Tolix in ANY color you want that Tolix offers for the same price as Sundance. you do not have to choose from just three colors:

www.Antiquaireonline.com

They have a whole Tolix section. i bought A chairs and stools from them in several different colors including a powder blue and an army green.

http://www.antiquaireonline.com/?cat=77

You can order custom lockers (with each drawer a different color if you want), bistro tables, all the different height stools, all the chairs, etc. Truly a designer's dream!!!

kathy said...

hello all,

i have 24 yellow tolix chairs from pottery barn that i am trying to sell. all 24 are brand new, still in factory boxes. i received them just this last september and sadly, will no longer have any use for them. they have been in storage.

if anyone is interested in purchasing - please feel free to email me: marmalademaven@gmail.com

thanks!
kathy

Crazy Frenchy said...

Hello to Tolix lovers,
I'm selling 5 original Tolix chairs bought in 1960 (+ I give one free which need a little soldering)for 500 euro.
I'm in France. So you'll have to pay the shipping. Or pick'em up in Nantes.
Anyone interested ?

Anonymous said...

Hi Crazy Frenchy. Yes, I am interested in buying the Tolix chairs from you! I live in Germany and could come pick them up sometime. Email me at claireroach81 (at) hotmail (dot) com

Ivan Crema said...

Hi all, I just bought 4 Tolix T4, the seller (here in Italy) told me they are original from the 50's, they are actually old, original painting orange and cream with several dots of rust. I get them for €100.00 each, was it a good deal? are they worth more or less than the model A?
Thank you for the info (imassari@iol.it)

Greg said...

I'm selling aged Tolix chairs now. They are real Tolix chairs available in various colors and conditions.

Vintage Tolix Chair

Anonymous said...

You can get these Tolix style reproduction chairs from Cult Furniture. They have a great range of colours and pretty cheap too. They ship all over Europe. www.cultfurniture.com

billy said...

I ordered these Direct from China for my restaurant and only paid about $50.00

www.hkmsdeisgn.com

us@hkmsdesign.com

billy said...

I ordered these Direct from China for my restaurant and only paid about $50.00

www.hkmsdeisgn.com

us@hkmsdesign.com

Pam said...

Billy,

Thanks for the link to hkmsdesign.com

How is the quality? What did you pay for shipping? I need 8 barstools, what did you order?

Thanks, Pam