Love It or Hate It: Exaggerated Wing Back

So, a new column for The Salvaged!  Love It or Hate It is pretty self-explanatory, no?  But I’ll still break it down for you, ok.  Every now and then there is a trend that sticks around just long enough for me to wonder if it will become a classic, or a fad.  I’m not so sure I’ll always end up on one side or the other, but the debate is fun.  At least I think it is!  This morning I present you: the exaggerated wing back.  There are two different versions I’d like to discuss.

The first:


And the second:


These are both from Restoration Hardware and are priced between $730-$1300 each depending on your fabric choice.  Restoration Hardware is a fantastic source of inspiration, and we all know it’s especially jaw-dropping around Christmastime.  I love the French and Belgian-inspired lines and shapes.  These two wing backs, and other similar varieties, are popping up everywhere, and have been for quite a while.

The first shape is definitely my favorite.  The curved, sheltering wings just make me want to pull my knees up to my chest and close my eyes for a minute.  Some days any chair at all makes me want to do that.  But I digress.  This feels inherently more girlie to me because of the curves.  The back is still low enough that I feel comfortable calling it cozy.  Something is still bothering me about how that wing wraps around the arm though.  I like it, but my head tilts and it makes me go, waiiiiiiiiit a minuuuuuuuute….?  Here’s one for sale right now on Craigslist for $70 that is similar, but not nearly as curvy:


It seems that second shape is the more popular of the two right now.  Looky, looky what I found at Home Goods:

IMG_2106 IMG_2109

This chair was priced at $399.  Sidebar: does anyone else run around TJMaxx and Home Goods grabbing things and “ohmygoodnessing” themselves to death, only to walk around slowly and think, ‘do I really need this…?  do I really love this…?’  Only to find the the answer is no?  I can stand and stare at something for an hour and still not be able to convince myself one way or the other.  And then I leave with that ikat pillow.  I do love the pillow, it’s perfect on my sofa.  But anyway, that’s where I am with this chair.  Not to mention my constant irritation with Home Goods being, why on earth do you always only have one of the thing I need instead of a pair, for the love of all things holy!?   Oh but there are times I don’t buy things and I’m so regretful of it.  Which is exactly how I feel about that pretty gold side table.  It was $69.99.  Should’ve done it.  But on to the debate.

That big wing back initially caught my eye to anchor the ends of my dining table.  My dining room is so very sad right now, and it must be finished, pronto.  But as I mentioned, there was only one of these, which answered the purchase question for the moment at least.  But the more I stare at the shape of this chair, I think, ‘you belong in Alice in Wonderland.’  Is it just a little too weird?  I mean, the price tag soothes the sting quite a bit, but it’s just so exaggerated.  Tone it down just a few clicks and I think I could do it .

The concept of a wing back is most certainly a classic.  But I’m curious about this exaggerated shapes and whether they will stick.  Do we love it, or hate it?

4 thoughts on “Love It or Hate It: Exaggerated Wing Back

  1. Hate is such a strong word when it comes to the wing back…exaggerated or not. However, I’m definitely not a fan. I think my dislike runs deeper than simply not liking the unclean lines a wing back flaunts so proudly. I do believe I was scarred in the late 80’s early 90’s when my Mom decided every piece of upholstered furniture in the house should be a color consisting of the name rose, mauve, salmon, or blush. A trend which resulted in a pair of salmon colored wing backs complete with floral arm covers, oh the horror.

    1. Brooke, I totally hear you about the 80s and 90s shades of “pink!” I lean toward more traditional design, but I also am drawn to clean lines as well. Have you seen the Luxe Wing Chair from Crate & Barrel? I’ve had my eye on it for a while and have been looking for something similar for a sitting area in our master bedroom!

  2. Lacey,

    I am a huge fan of wingback chairs. I currently have four in my home of varying styles! ( some short cozy reading chairs and some of the more classic styles as well) I agree with you completely that the there is a little something that makes you say “huh??” by the way the curves join the chair on the first one. However, I definitely think that the wingback chair is a keeper!


    Keep the posts coming! I’m loving the blog!

    1. Ashley, thank you! Keep coming back- I’m so glad you like what I’ve got going on here! I will always love a solid wing back, but yes, something about these exaggerated versions just aren’t quite doing it for me!


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