Pages

Saturday, February 11, 2012

The Best Folding Chair in the Western World: A. Fritz & Company

Growing up, my grandparents had these folding chairs:

After my grandparents passed away, my parents inherited them.
Talk about fantastic mid-century design!

When I was single and living on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, I learned that my neighbors had the very same chairs.
When I got married, I learned that my in-laws had the very same chairs.
They used them as their dining room chairs until they could afford real furniture.
When I had dinner at our friends' houses, I learned that they had the very same chairs.
People had them in different colors.
People had them in upholstery to coordinate with their dining room chair fabric.

Mostly, they were all well-worn, stained velvet gold or rust colored chairs.

But everyone agreed:  These are The Best Folding Chairs.  Ever.

And you can't get them at IKEA, Crate & Barrel, or any other big box store.
They are local and made by a family-owned business in Long Island City, New York.

Last Sukkot we needed more folding chairs.
I looked up the name of the company on the bottom of the chair.
I had no idea if they still existed.
The story was that my Aunt Henny and Uncle Herman were friends were the owners of the company. Sounds oddly familiar to my family's Joyva story.

A. Fritz is still around, alive and kicking.
They have no web site to speak of.
You have to pay by check:  they don't take credit cards.
The woman on the phone is very nice.

Same tag on our new chairs as the ones we have that were purchased in the 1960s


Except now they have colors and fabrics that speak to a more contemporary taste.

Now, this is REALLY mid-century design.  Would Marcel Breuer have approved?  Eh...it still does have upholstery, which he was not at all into with his infamous Wassily Chair.  But it *is* minimal... 
Who can't love a chair that folds up so trim and slim?


Tonight I was at a melave malka (post-Shabbat music gathering) at my friend Holly's house.  I noticed she had these exact same chairs.  She said all of her Philadelphia friends have them.  I said many of my New York friends have them.

It's got to be a Jewish world thing.

I wonder if folks out in Los Angeles have 'em?

Oh, and they are so affordable.  Like, no more than $150 for 4 chairs.  And they'll last you for a lifetime.  And then your children and grandchildren will enjoy and be inspired to blog about them.

A. Fritz Chair
37-28 9th Street
Long Island City, NY
718-361-0499
checks only
They will send the chairs UPS
no web site
under the radar, but likely you know these chairs

26 comments:

Ashira said...

Classic! I'll have to keep an eye out for these golden oldies out here in the west! I'll keep you posted...

Rita Sitron said...

How do I get these chairs? I live in Michigan.

Rachel Molly said...

Hi Rita...as I posted at the bottom of the post, just give them a call and tell them you read about it on Whole Phamily

A. Fritz Chair
37-28 9th Street
Long Island City, NY
718-361-0499
checks only
They will send the chairs UPS

Anonymous said...

The web site is http://fritzfoldingchairs.com/
I love the chair "I sit on a Fritz."

Folding Chairs said...

Check out wide verity of comfortable Folding Chairs at reasonable prices. We have modern and traditional armchairs in many styles and colors.

Unknown said...

in the web Fritz said they relaunched in June, I keep calling to put more order, the phone is changed and there is no respond to my e-mails. anyone can help Please.

Unknown said...

in the web Fritz said they relaunched in June, I keep calling to put more order, the phone is changed and there is no respond to my e-mails. anyone can help Please.

Meir said...

I too am trying to reach this company, is there a site out there that has similar chairs? ty

Meir said...

I too am trying to reach this company, is there a site out there that has similar chairs? ty

Jack said...

Good news! you can find a high quality replica at chairsdirectseating.com in the folding chairs category.

Unknown said...

I am looking for replacement glides for Fritz & Co. Chairs. Can anyone help??

Anonymous said...

anyone know how to reach the company???

Unknown said...

I sell a replica of these chairs. I have 8 different color combinations. I can be reached at 866-903-4343 or 732-370-6063. We ship nationwide.

Joseph David said...

I sell a replica of these chairs. I have 8 different color combinations. I can be reached at 866-903-4343 or 732-370-6063. We ship nationwide.

Gila David said...

To Unknown, I sell the replacement glides too for the chairs. I can be reached at 732-370-6063.

Anonymous said...

I am a designer and have ordered dozens for clients and for personal use.They custom upholster COM and offer a 19" height for the seat. Amazing chair and a real loss if they are gone..

Minoo Shaoul said...

Anonymous: I am interested on those dozens of chairs if they are A Fritz, what is the color of the frame so as the seat and back of the chair.

Minoo Shaoul said...

Jopseph David: do you also make them with velvet seating and back support? if you have Web sight that I can see the frame color and seat color.Thank You

Minoo Shaoul said...

Gila David: if you have web or post the pictures of your chairs. I have tones of client that they are looking to purchase.

Unknown said...

I just called the company. Their website is bestfurnitureonline.com

Anonymous said...

I've also tried to reach them since last Spring. Sadly, I think they are out of business!

yh-o said...

Anyone know where I can buy replacement foot caps and glides? Thanks in advance.

Jack Kerpel said...

Relacement end caps and glides can be purchased on our website
www.chairsdirectseating.com.
Please call 866-860-SEAT for further information.

Gila David said...

Minoo Shaoul Please contact me at 7323706063 and I will be glad to help you out.

RSR said...

I am so disappointed to learn that A. Fritz is out of business. I wanted to purchase 16 velvet black chairs. ( the ones I owned were damaged in a flood) Does anyone know where I can get the velvet one?

Gila David said...

Great News! The 19" dining height folding chairs just came in. Gold/Almond & Silver/Grey. You can purchase on our website at www.bestfurnitureonline.com or call 732-370-6063.

Post a Comment