December 6, 2007

The Casalino Chair Is Back In Production


Susanne is reporting at Kidsmodern that Alexander Begge's awesome 1970 design for a plastic non-Panton kid's chair, the Casalino, is back in production. The Dutch manufacturer Casala is introducing it in two sizes, for kids and toddlers.

Apparently, Casala tracked down the original molds in Antalya, which I had to look up on Wikipedia. It's a Greek province. Not clear what the molds for a mod 60's kid's chair were doing in Greece all these years, but if you ask, you could get either awkward silence or a 2-hour slide show. Let's just smile and nod approvingly.

Now if only they'd make the new Casalino Jrs out of cornstarch plastic or the shells of non-GMO edamame, we'd be set. Though whether that's the hippie treehugger in me, or the guy who shelled out a fortune for the vintage chairs on eBay, I can't say.

Casalino is back! []
See the whole Casalino line, including stools, armchairs, tables (?) at Casala's site []

Previously: Panton Junior: duh? or finally! ?
Related: Hi, my name is Dutch, and I'm a kid's chair-aholic. [guest spot at]


Jim (aka Dutch) told me about these a while back, and showed me how they could be obtained on eBay for a pittance - although they do seem to cost a fair amount in vintage stores. But I've never found the exact color/size combination that I've been looking for since so haven't yet pulled the trigger. Always seemed to be a cheaper alternative to the Panton chairs, so how did you end up paying a fortune for them? :-)

Anyway, no mention of price anywhere yet, so I wonder what they'll cost. Any guesses?

[d'oh, busted. They can go for $75-100/ea. on eBay, but I actually got mine from Craigslist, set of four for $100. Orange and yellow. They're nice because they're that old-timey, hard plastic, not the Panton Jr. polypropylene. The kid turns them upside down and pours buttons into the slopes and curves. -ed.]

I do have a huge stack of them from eBay over the years. As with anything on eBay it's all about patience. They're not worth a bidding war, so wait until someone has a bunch available (3 or more) and you can still get them for $15-20 a chair. I got one for $9.99 once, and saw a set of four white ones go for like $50 a few months ago.

I have seen this chair in Andy's pictures, so he probably has his own eBay stories.

oh, and if the reintroduction of these chairs depresses any vintage plastic chair elitists, check out the Artemide's old "Milano Modello Efebino" designed by "Stacy Dukes":

Or Peter Hijort Lorenzen's chairs by Cado:

Probably won't see either of those going back into production any time soon. But who knows.

I have never sprung for any of the bright shiny plastic modern chairs, even though they make me salivate automatically every time I lay eyes on one, because I remember when the fiberglas models lived in the waiting room at the orthodontist and I remember how my backbone rubbed against the back for hours and hours and hours.

So can you tell me? Are they... comfortable?

I don't know about the kids' version, but the adult version is VERY comfy. It bounces just a little bit, and is perfectly shaped to fit your spine.

I guess it's nice to see the remakes (how much $?), but some new colors would be even nicer.

This ebayer has had a set of eight size 1 chairs on ebay for months. Buy-it-now $45 each. There are three left.

Jim, that set of white zeroes went for $102.50 in June. $25 each for a nice color seems like the right price.

I don't know who is paying $300, but Kid O is sold out of them. (They're also sold out of their stock of Bertoia kids chairs at $500 a pop.)

And a really nice bright yellow one I was watching just relisted and sold for $36 buy-it-now.

What respectable DT reader doesn't have one of these?! Sheesh.

As a sidenote, it really sucks as a nursing chair. Pun fully intended.

my wife just picked up 4 of the 70's model white plastic child size chairs at a local salvation army for $1. each, what a deal, they look almost new.

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