Shaker chair aesthetic: Thatcher, Salt, Olle
- The San Francisco Chronicle, 02/14/2010

The Shaker philosophy of furniture-making, with its emphasis on function and aversion to embellishment, has attracted many converts in the design world.

So this week, we thought we'd share three sublimely spare, Shaker-influenced side chairs, starting with the Thatcher Side Chair at Room & Board for $249. Crafted by hand in Vermont from solid maple, the Thatcher has thin legs and backrest that give it a clean-lined, modern look. Though we're particularly fond of the ebony stain and glossy lacquer finish shown here, Thatcher can also be ordered in natural cherry, walnut and maple.

Another option is the Salt Chair, which is sold at Design Within Reach for $98. At 33 1/4 inches in height, 16 inches wide, and 15 3/4 inches deep, Salt is a compact solution for a small table. Made of beech and coated with water-based black paint, spare and spindly Salt speaks to the Shaker's no-more-than-necessary approach to design.

If your budget is as pared down as your aesthetic, you might consider Ikea's Olle, a similarly spindly black chair for $34.99 that was created by Swedish designer Nike Karlsson. Olle is made of birch, with a black nitrocellulose lacquer stain, and is available in Ikea stores, with additional red and white options.

Simple, functional designs like these are worth a "hallelujah!"

$249 Thatcher Side Chair  

$98 Salt Chair  

$34.99 Olle chair