August 4, 2007

Japanese Mid-Century Modern: The K-Chair Mini By Karimoku60


Established in the 1940's, Karimoku is the biggest wood furnituremaker in Japan. Their early specialty seemed to be a kind of formal, destyled riff on Swedish/Danish/Knollish modernism, the kind of thing Ultraman would be sitting on while he listened to his agent trying to rescue the deal for a second season.

Ultraman did fine, but somewhere along the line, Karimoku drifted or schlocked out [the company's history slideshow gets really thin in the 1980's and 1990's], and it wasn't until 2002 that they revived their now-popular-again vintage postwar designs under the retro label, Karimoku60. And this time, there's a bonus for Ultraman fans: a kid-sized version.


The K-Chair Mini is a scaled-down version of the flagship mid-mod armchair. It's made of walnut-stained, sustainably harvested, rubberwood and black vinyl. There aren't any kid-sized side tables, though, so this would sit cutely, if a little forlornly, by itself.

If you get a pair, your kids could re-enact the first wholesale order for the Toyota 2000 GT. Just make sure the only thing the girls are allowed to do, though, is serve tea.

Karimoku60 K-Chair Mini Standard Black, about 25,000 yen []


One reliable source for Karimoku60 is Tokyo's D&Department . They are an institution in their own right.

Nice. Can you pick one up for me next time you're over there?

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