Carl Hansen & Søn Launches 60th Anniversary CH07 Shell Chair

The CH07 Shell Chair — designed by Hans J. Wegner and originally launched in 1963 — has turned 60 years old! To celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Shell Chair, Carl Hansen & Søn is launching an exclusive version of the chair in rosewood and oak that will only be available for a limited time starting October 1st.

The Shell Chair was first presented in 1963 at the Cabinetmakers’ Autumn Exhibition in Copenhagen. However, it took another 35 years for the chair to achieve its current level of popularity and recognition. This only serves to underline the visionary quality of Wegner as a designer.

In 2023, Carl Hansen & Søn will celebrate the Shell Chair’s 60th anniversary with an exclusive edition made of rosewood and oak. Rosewood has a characteristic, dark and warm grain which contrasts beautifully with the oak frame. Both types of wood have clear references to the Danish Modern movement of the 1950s and 1960s, and are today sourced from FSC®-certified forestry. Customers can also choose to add a seat upholstered from black, matt aniline leather from organically raised Danish cattle.

Knud Erik Hansen, CEO of Carl Hansen & Søn, comments on the 60th anniversary edition: “Hans J. Wegner was an eminent designer, and the Shell Chair is a testament to his visionary aesthetic which deserves to be marked with an outstanding anniversary edition. We have chosen to render the shells in rosewood. Its characteristic, dark and warm grain contrasts beautifully with the oak frame. Both types of wood have clear references to the Danish Modern movement of the 1950s and 1960s, where both the exotic and more homely woods were in vogue. Today, both rosewood and oak are sourced from FSC-certified forestry.”

Behind the CH07 Shell Chair

Hans J. Wegner had a good understanding of seating positions. This allowed him to develop a new type of shell chair without armrests that still features a reclining structure. The chair is characterized by a strong design language with high comfort.

The Shell Chair’s soft lines and organic shapes also demonstrate Wegner’s knowledge of both the potential and challenges of wood. To add stability to the three-legged chair, Wegner developed a distinctive double frame that is equally beautiful from all angles.

When Wegner presented the Shell Chair in 1963, the chair’s avant-garde appearance was ahead of its time, provoking mixed reviews. In tandem with the less developed production technology of the time, the chair saw very limited production. However, when Carl Hansen & Søn relaunched the Shell Chair in 1998, a new era’s understanding of the chair’s design led to immediate and deserved worldwide recognition.

To mark the anniversary edition of the CH07 Shell Chair, Carl Hansen & Søn has mounted a small brass plate engraved with Hans J. Wegner’s signature and design year. The anniversary edition will only be available for purchase from October 1 to December 31, 2023 and retails from $4,705.

1914 – 2007

Danish designer Hans J. Wegner is considered one of the leading furniture designers of the 20th century. He was a driving force in the Danish Modern movement, which helped change the way people viewed furniture in the 1950s and 1960s. Wegner is particularly renowned for his chairs, and is often referred to as the master of the chair. He created almost 500, many of which have achieved iconic status. He described design as an organic process, in which he started with the function and focused on refining and simplifying, in an effort to reduce the chair to its simplest possible form.