Home & Garden

New Life for Old Chairs

A bold Southern makeover done right

It’s no secret that Southerners admire a good comeback story. And that’s exactly why we wanted to know more about G&G vice president and publisher Christian Bryant’s recent addition to his office here at Garden & Gun: a pair of vintage midcentury chairs he discovered on a trip to a treasure trove of a shop called Number Four Eleven in Savannah, completely reinvented with new fabric.

One of the chairs, before the makeover.

“I love the clean lines of the chairs,” Bryant says, but he chose a bright, bold fabric by G&G partner Hinson called Boom Bloom to re-cover them, a dramatic departure from the original plaid and a choice that’s true to his personal style. While he usually leans minimal and neutral when it comes to interiors, “that changes with my artwork,” he says. “My collection is very colorful. When I saw this fabric, I thought it looked like an abstract painting.”

A detail of the Boom Bloom fabric.

The lively, fun fabric on both chairs feels right at home flanking his office bar. “Southerners love to tell a good story, usually over a drink or two, which makes these perfect in a cocktail setting,” Bryant says.

The textile, like the reason Bryant chose it, has an interesting backstory. Hinson & Company was founded by a Southerner, North Carolinian Harry Hinson. He launched the company in 1972 and quickly became known for hand-screened wall coverings, and printed and woven fabrics—and a penchant for the color red. Fast-forward to 2018 and David Toback, the director of textile design for Donghia, which acquired Hinson & Company (now Hinson by Donghia) in 2014, created Boom Bloom as part of the new Star Power Collection.

The re-covered chairs in Bryant’s office.

“This particular coloration, as used on the chairs, is a real dazzler but still very Hinson,” Toback says. “Red is so traditional and historic. People expect red as we’ve been offering it in some form or another since day one. For this print, we just freshened the shades of red a bit. Red sings, but even more so because it’s really part of a multicolor fabric in the end, with its blues, greens, and eggy yellows. You can see riffs on art deco and late sixties and early seventies psychedelic colors in the style and rendering of the sculpted, highly stylized flowers and leaves. It’s like the surprise in the Cracker Jack box, because Hinson has been thought of as so very American and largely traditional. We wanted a ‘wow’ moment for the collection.”

It’s certainly a “wow” moment in Bryant’s office.

To see more of the Star Power Collection, visit donghia.com  or follow @hinson_by_donghia.