"What Restoration Hardware is trying to do is bad for the American consumer, bad for American jobs and bad for the global environment" - Gregg Buchbinder, Emeco CEO
Restoration Hardware, home decor mega-store, recently pulled it's "Naval" chair from its showrooms this month. Thanks to Emeco, this chair is now one less reproduction diluting the design industry greats with inexpensive and poor quality knock offs.
Navy Chair by Emeco
Originally designed in 1944, The Navy Chair by Emeco was originally designed for... well, the Navy. Boasting a 150 year warranty, this virtually indestructible chair has risen the ranks from fleet decks to high end designer homes and museums. Emeco has worked hard to cultivate Navy's reputation - the chair makes up a large portion of the company's logo and brand - and they are committed to preserving it.
Emeco isn't the first design house to find itself victim to design theft. In fact, Restoration Hardware features many products on its website that mirror works by Scandinavian designer Arne Jacobsen including its "Magnus" and "Devon" look-a-likes of the classic Series 7 and Swan Chairs.
Emeco launched a lawsuit against Restoration Hardware on October 1st and by October 5th, the Naval chair was nowhere to be found on RH's website or in their showrooms. The company is currently in negotiations to settle the suit, but according to this New York Times article, Emeco's CEO Gregg Buchbinder is concerned that the Emeco brand has already suffered extensive damage and there is more to come. Mr. Buchbinder feels that because production has already been initiated in China that many more reproductions will follow worldwide.
“If I don’t fight, it kills the company.” - Gregg Buchbinder quote from New York Times article "Once Again, Seeing Double", October 10, 2012.
"Always Authentic' is our motto here at Gabriel Ross and we proudly represent and support Emeco's efforts to squash design theft. Visit grshop.com and find authentic Emeco products including the (real deal) Navy Chair.
To read the full press release on this case, click here.
To read New York Times' article on Emeco's lawsuit, click here.