The Winnipeg Chair


The Winnipeg Chair, also referred to as the Canadian Coconut Chair, was designed in the 1940’s 

by Professor A.J. Donohue of The University of Manitoba's Faculty of Architecture.  This slung back lounging chair with a moulded plywood base was conceptualized and built in the basement of his home by him and several students of Architectural Design.



Although the Winnipeg Chair was sold at the Hudson’s Bay Company at a cost of $35.00, it is rumoured that only 200 of this Canadian classic were ever made.   Many though have replicated this iconic piece but owning an original is considered enviable.


Approximately a decade later, a design of striking resemblance was created by American Industrial Designer George Nelson – The Coconut Chair.   

This original representing an era in furniture design, can still be found in production today.


This year we were fortunate enough to receive an original Winnipeg Chair for restoration.  The original brass legs were rechromed and the wood shell refinished and upholstered in a wonderful textured grey weave.  It is now been brought back to its original splendour. 

Nancy Owen
About the Author Nancy OwenPartner, Workshop Designs
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