Sunday, April 28, 2013



There wasn't anybody at auction two weeks ago to stop me from buying MORE CHAIRS........
How could I resist?  I had previewed this set of four mid-century pull-up chairs the day before the Thursday auction and was debating whether to buy them. They were marked Monteverdi-Young on the ticket and they had immediately caught my eye (if you have read "Blink" you will know what that means) which is usually an indication that the chairs are good. When they came to the block on Thursday I had just walked in and hadn't had time to check out the chairs a second time (never a good omen). The auctioneer even identified the chairs as Monteverdi-Young from the block...I ended up paying quite a bit more than I had intended and then had my doubts as to whether the chairs were truly fabricated by the highly desirable California mid-century furniture maker, Monteverdi-Young.
I started doing the usual guilt-trip and kicking myself for not being more prudent. I paid for the chairs and left, deciding to research them a bit more before picking them up. The more I researched the chairs, the more doubtful I became....but I kept on searching for similar examples. The auction house started calling me to remind me to pick up the chairs (not good). 
Finally, I found what I was looking for--a pair of similar chairs, but of dining room chair proportions. My  guys are indeed Monteverdi-Young, but an uncommon form. The defining characteristics of the chairs and the reason that I am convinced they were indeed  made  by Monteverdi-Young are the type of construction and materials used. The frames of the chairs are solid bleached mahogany (these chairs are very heavy), the shaping of the out-swept back legs together with the way in which the legs form one continuous line to join with the top back rail, plus the refined and exquisite workmanship of the joinery are all tell-tale signs of a Monteverdi-Young creation. The quality of these chairs is superb.
The upholstery is in almost mint condition with a bit of fading, but not much. Although the type of  fabric chosen and the pale aqua tone are indicative of late 1950's design, it is hard for me to believe the upholstery on the chairs has survived 50 plus years in this condition....on the other hand, the frames are in almost mint condition, too.
Here are a few more detailed photos.

If I were to reupholster these chairs (which I am itching to do), I would choose a very textural linen/silk/wool boucle in ivory with bits of gold and black. Unfortunately, the designer or retail client who buys the chairs will get to have all of the creative fun with these guys. I think that I will sell them either as pairs or as the set of four.
It has been a gorgeous week-end here in Los Angeles (almost too beautiful, because my buyers are not  coming indoors to shop).
Jones says "HI"--he has not gotten into the trash lately--maybe  I am finally becoming better trained.

Have a wonderful Spring week.
Mary and Jones (& Cole)


  1. Hi Mary!
    Great eye, even second guessing yourself! Very unique and I too can think of several fabrics which would be stunning!

    I will send you an email later. Water therapy this afternoon!

    Art by Karena

    1. Hi Karena, I just have to stop the "second-guessing" business--and just go for it. Blessing with the therapy session. xoxox

  2. Just saw your site as I was looking up furniture from my grandfather's company, Monteverdi-Young. (Roger B. Young was my grandfather). I wanted to let you know I have a chair similar to those chairs you found, without the arms. The upholstery is black but of similar texture. I also have several catalogs that feature these chairs as dining room chairs, though mine was paired with a combination desk/dresser my grandfather had in his guestroom in his home in Fullerton. I was glad to see his furniture is still standing the test of time! Enjoy, and thanks for posting!

    1. Hi Helen, Thank you for comment. Yes, Monteverdi-Young furniture is highly desirable. I did reupholster these beauties in a gray/mauve cotton velvet. If possible, I would love to have a copy of the catalogue page that shows these chairs. My email is Once again, thank you for your helpful comment. Mary

    2. Hi Helen, I have recently purchased two chairs from your Grandfather's company and am having problems finding out any information on them. Would you be willing to contact me? thanks so much, Jennifer

  3. We have a very large (11'x 4'6") conference room table with 10 chairs built by Monteverdi-Young. We are interested in selling, but not sure of the pricing and best way to offer to the market. Can either of you give us some advice? Thanks Tammy

    1. Hi Tammy,
      I would love to help you. Can you email me directly at and attach good photos of both the chairs and the table. Of course, your location is also important as valuation changes with demographics. Hoping to hear from you.
      Best, Mary