Unnecessary Wants: Kinesis Chair by Thos. Moser Cabinetmakers
Last year, we went to the Dwell Home show at the LA Convention Center. I came across this chair at the Thos. Moser booth. I had never heard of the company, but boy, was that chair gorgeous. And quite comfortable too. I sat in the walnut and grey suede cloth version, which I love, and of course it has to be the more expensive of the two versions offered. These types of pieces must definitely be viewed, not really as investments because that kind of implies reselling it eventually, but as heirlooms to be cherished, cared for and passed down among the generations. For $7000, this isn’t disposable furniture.
Thos. Moser Cabinetmakers was started in 1972 by Thomas Moser, a former professor at Bates College, who wanted to start a furniture business that involved his family. All of his 4 sons have worked for the company, with his youngest David, collaborating on design, such as the Kinesis Chair. Two additional sons are still with the company as well. All the furniture is crafted in their Auburn, Maine workshop that employs around 100 crafts-men and women, primarily out of American black cherry. Over the years, the company has evolved a style that has come to incorporate influences from Shaker, Japanese, and Arts & Crafts Movement. The Kinesis Chair represents a new direction for them, with more organic curves.
The company offers a unique program called Customer In Residence. A type of internship, this is a fee-based program where those selected spend a week in Maine crafting a piece of furniture side by side with the Thos. Moser craftsmen. The price includes lodging, two group dinners, the cost of materials for the piece of furniture, and the actual finished piece. The actual cost is determined by the piece being made, but the program can range between $5000-10000. I need to buy a lottery ticket.
Here is a video of Thomas in 2009 talking about how the program came to be and the importance of handcrafted objects.
They have a YouTube channel with more info as well as videos highlighting each of the participants in the 2009 program.