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Chair First

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White & Black 4 - 6 weeks | Colors 8 - 10 weeks
Herman Miller

*Sold in sets of 4

The first entirely three-dimensional plastic chair, the Chair First is far from ordinary. Designer Stefano Giovannoni took the air-molding technology developed for the Air-Chair to the next level, creating a sophisticated, streamlined profile on a chair that is a single piece. Sturdy, durable, lightweight, stackable. Oh—and comfortable too. The light weight and stackability make these chairs perfect for patios and decks. As happy outdoors as inside.

First there was the Air-Chair—the original chair produced with the gas injection molding process that allowed for a continuous smooth surface over the entire piece of furniture. Magis followed that successful experiment with Chair First, which took the process one step farther. Thus, its name—the first example of a chair made with this advanced molding process.

In the mid-1990s, designer Stefano Giovannoni worked up a design for a chair made of two materials. Magis rejected the design in favor of a two-part chair made of steel. But eventually, that design was scrapped too—the chair was too heavy and too expensive to tool. Eventually, the decision was made to use an advanced version of the gas injection molding process to make the chair in plastic.

In air molding, air is injected into the mold at a precise time, which reduces the volume of material used and the overall weight. The making of Chair First was the first time that air was used throughout the entire chair—including the seat and back—rather than just in the tubular sections. A cross-section of the chair would look like Swiss cheese, with small air pockets throughout.

While teaching at various universities, Giovannoni has advised student designers to focus on research and not settle for the easy solutions. “They need to find their own personal way of expressing their ideas, and that takes a lot of time and a lot of thinking,” he says. That’s exactly what Giovannoni—who also designed the Bombo Stool—did in the long process that created the Chair First. He describes it as “the first really three-dimensional plastic chair.” Not only is it more three-dimensional, it’s also a more organic form and doesn’t have the structural elements that are visible in other plastic chairs.

  • Armless chair
    • 20"W x 20"D x 31"H
    • Seat Height (SH): 18"



Chair First is made from polypropylene with glass fiber added. Constructed using a complex air-molding manufacturing process.


0% recycled content; 100% recyclable GREENGAURD® Gold certified


*Ships assembled 

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When Italian architect and designer Stefano Giovannoni talks about influences in his life, he says the most important was attending the University of Florence during the late 1970s. "That was where the concept of 'radical architecture' was born, which created a whole new language and way of expression in Italian design," he says. It was a movement that threw out all the rules, resulting in a new vision for designers and architects.

It may also have influenced the naming of his first studio, founded with Guido Venturini in the 1980s, which was called "King-Kong."

With an eye for communication and a penchant for cleverness, Giovannoni has designed some of the most commercially successful products in the world, including the successful Girotondo and Mami lines of household products for Alessi, Il Bagno Alessi, and the Bombo family for Magis.

In fact, Giovannoni says seeing the results of his products is even more satisfying to him than the many prestigious awards he's won over the years. "It's my job to think about how a product will be received in the marketplace, and that is something I take very seriously," he says.

Products such as the Bombo Stool, Paso Doble Family, Chair First, Table First, all designed for Magis, exemplify his innovative use of materials and original thinking. Chair First, for example, was the first three-dimensional plastic chair created through gas-injected air molding, while the Bombo Stool created a whole new typology (it moves up and down) and was so futuristic it appeared in the movie "Star Trek."

Paying attention to popular culture is something he feels all designers need to do. "We have to have long antennas to perceive changes in society as a whole and adopt our language to the context of the larger world," he says, noting with approval the current focus on sustainability and environmental stewardship.

A former professor at several universities, Giovannoni advises up-and-coming designers to focus on research and not settle for the easy, simple solutions. "They each need to find their own personal way of expressing their ideas, and that takes a lot of time and a lot of thinking," he says.

Giovannoni's own prodigious work is included in major museums throughout the world.

Care & Maintenance

With regular care and maintenance, your Herman Miller product will provide many years of superior performance and satisfaction. To maintain quality, please follow the cleaning procedures outlined here.

The instructions for the care and maintenance of Herman Miller products are provided to you as a service. No warranty is implied since results may vary.

Use a soft rag, either dry or wet. When needed, use ph-balanced soap diluted in water. Do not use abrasive sponges as they may leave scratches. Immediately dry after washing with a soft rag or a chamois leather. Avoid use of alcohol, solvents and products containing even a small quantity of ammonia. Periodic and correct maintenance allows the product to keep its original aspect and lengthens the duration of its performance.

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What's Covered

Herman Miller's warranty covers everything—including electrical components, casters, pneumatic cylinders, tilts, and all moving mechanisms. It recognizes the changing nature of work and the need for products that can stand up to continuous use. This means that when warranty work is performed in the U.S. and Canada, Herman Miller foots the bill. They promise to stand behind their quality 100 percent. Designed to improve your environment whether it's an office, hospital, school, home, an entire building, or the world at large.

How to Schedule Service

If you need product service or repair, please contact the Herman Miller dealer or retailer. They will be able to make the final determination whether the issue is specifically covered under the warranty and eligible for replacement or repair.

Provisions that apply to all Herman Miller-branded products and services:

Herman Miller, Inc. (“Herman Miller”), 855 East Main Avenue, PO Box 302, Zeeland, Michigan 49464-0302, USA, warrants the products sold by it and its subsidiaries to be free from defects in material and workmanship, regardless of the number of shifts during which the products are used, for the warranty periods specified.This warranty covers the sale of Herman Miller product in all countries. During the applicable warranty period, Herman Miller, as its sole obligation, will repair or replace (at its option) any product, part, or component covered by this warranty and sold after the effective date of this warranty which fails under normal use as a result of a defect in material or workmanship; Herman Miller will repair or replace the aforementioned product, part, or component with a comparable product, part, or component.This warranty extends only to the original purchasers who acquire new product from Herman Miller, its subsidiaries, or its authorized resellers. Any product, part, or component must have been used according to Herman Miller’s published instructions and installed and maintained by a Herman Miller factory-trained technician or an authorized Herman Miller dealer installer. If these requirements are met, warranty coverage will be extended. Any misuse, abuse, or modification to the original product voids the warranty. Herman Miller does not warrant the performance of the product when used in combination with other than original Herman Miller product.The warranty period starts from the date of purchase.This document inclusively describes all of the warranties given and remedies available with respect to the company’s products and services. Herman Miller and its subsidiaries disclaim any other warranty whether express or implied, statutory or otherwise, in relation to the products.

Herman Miller does not warrant:
• natural variations in wood grain or figure or the presence of character marks
• changes in surface finishes, including colorfastness, due to aging or exposure to light
• marks, scars, or wrinkles occurring naturally in leather
• veins, marks, voids, fissures, or cracks found naturally in stone

In addition, Herman Miller does not warrant:
• failure resulting from normal wear and tear
• pilling of textiles
• the matching of colors, grains, or textures of natural materials
• the colorfastness or the matching of colors of textiles, including an exact match to cuttings, samples, or to swatch cards
• damage, marking, or staining of veneer surfaces due to contact with rubber or similar compounds; damage from sharp objects or imprinting from writing instruments, or prolonged exposure to direct sunlight
• discoloration of Lyris™, Lyris 2, and any light-colored textiles due to soiling, stains, or dye transfer from clothing including denim
• foreign objects abrading fabric over time


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