TON, an acronym for the Czech phrase for "bent wood furniture industry"
, is one of the three companies that have inherited Michael Thonet's history. The headquarters is still located in Bystřice pod Hostýnem, where the Austrian cabinet maker created the world's first wood bending factory in 1861. The choice of place was not accidental: Michael Thonet, who had dedicated fifty years of his life to perfecting the technique of bending wood, had understood that red beech, abundant in that area, hard, compact and homogeneous, without knots or significant grain, was the perfect wood for the purpose. The classic chairs and stools that leave the historic factory have largely entered the history of design, while the most recent pieces have won numerous prestigious awards. Alongside the historical collections, reproposed without reinterpretation, TON offers curved wood furniture in a contemporary key, thanks to the collaboration with various designers. TON chairs and tables
are a unique combination of quality, innovative design and traditional woodworking craftsmanship.
TON, from classic icons to contemporary collections
TON has in its catalogue some historical pieces, reproposed without changes compared to the originals. The worldwide success of the chairs
made by Thonet is certainly due to their design, innovative for the time, but also to their extraordinary robustness. It is said that, on the occasion of the Universal Exhibition in Paris in 1889, chair N°14
fell from the Eiffel Tower and remained intact. In fact, the bending technique gives the wood solidity and flexibility, and minimizes the use of fittings, overlaps and joints. The collection of TON's historical pieces, in addition to the already mentioned chair N°14, includes among others the chair N°18
, famous as the chair of the Viennese cafés, the chair N°20
with Vienna straw seat and backrest, the stools and the famous chair N°30
. The latter was Le Corbusier's favourite chair, who described it as "noble, essential, simple and able to adapt to the shape of the body".
TON also offers contemporary pieces inspired by icons of the past, such as the chairs from the Dejavu collection
, the Tram collection or the Ironica chair
with its table. The fresh and retro style of the Ironica family has decreed its success, so much so that it is the best-selling in the long run. Inspired by the past, reinterpreted in a contemporary key, the Split collection
, designed by Arik Levy. The particularity of the Split chair
lies in the fact that the color, chosen from a palette of 9 bright colors, is sprayed by hand to obtain a shade. Each piece is therefore unique. Finally, Jaroslav Juřica redesigned No. 14, using only three pieces, two of which are identical and form the legs, backrest and armrests simultaneously. The result is the 002 Chair
, which won a mention at the prestigious Interior Innovation Award 2012.
The evolution of curved wood in TON's products
Recently TON has undertaken numerous collaborations with established designers, with the aim of freeing itself from iconic models and reaching an audience with contemporary tastes. The use of bent wood in all models, while introducing innovations. The award-winning Merano chair
designed by South Tyrolean designer Alexander Gufler is a perfect example. The solid wood legs are connected to the harmonious backrest and the curved plywood seat without the use of screws or metal parts. Extremely light and solid, it can be stacked up to 14 pieces. The Merano collection
also includes an armchair, a lounge chair and a bar chair. Alexander Gufler replicates the success of Merano with the Albu collection
, the first series of products completely coated with TON. The chair, the armchair and the lounge chair, united by the similar shape of the legs and the seat, are available with leather and fabric upholstery, and are designed primarily to meet the needs of prestigious hotels and restaurants, but also private homes. The collection won the Red Dot Award 2018, the Good Design 2018 and the German Design Award 2018.
The Fleur coat stand
, simple and with well-defined lines, is inspired by the technology of wood curvature. It simply consists of three curved beechwood legs that act as feet and hangers. Another award-winning product in the TON catalogue is the Chips armchair
by Czech designer Lucie Koldová. Soft curves and contrasting materials characterize this lounge chair, in which the backrest, in perforated fabric, is framed in a curved wooden oval in the shape of chips that forms one of the three legs. The solid seat, abundantly padded, contrasts with the backrest, which is very light.
The Leaf armchair
, just awarded with a mention at the German Design Award 2020, completes the successful collection designed by the Italian studio E-ggs. The armchair integrates the chair and the bar chair, winners of the same award in 2017, and stands out for its attention to detail, functionality and ergonomic qualities. The solid wood legs support the seat and backrest made of a thin sheet of bent plywood. Inspired by nature, particularly the leaves, it is characterized by a harmonious and attractive design.
Ton on sale online: curved wood furniture on Archiproducts shopTon's curved wood furniture
, chairs, tables, accessories, can be purchased on the Archiproducts shop: over 180 products of the historical company available online, from the most recent collections to historical pieces.