Behind the design: the Loha Armchair

With its elegantly curved silhouette, rich rubberwood and rattan cane cutout detailing, the Loha Armchair is a statement piece for your living space and has established itself as an OB Icon that transformed into a full range. Our Furniture Team talks us through the development of the initial design and the creation of the final product.

Statement seating

With a deep seat upholstered in a choice of fabrics, Loha makes an impact as an accent chair in whichever room it sits. Compact enough to fit a cosy corner or reading nook, while stylish enough to stand out in a guest room or hallway, it can be as versatile as you choose. Select your fabric colour to help it blend in with your décor or opt for a striking pop to make it stand out on its own merit.


Loha’s clean, organic lines, modern shape and contrasting materials give a nod to mid-century styling. When the first conception took place, the trend for mixed materials was just emerging and the team felt that the mixed materials of wood, cane and velvet would translate perfectly to an armchair.

The smooth, curved rubberwood provides a satisfying juxtaposition against the detailed rattan cane cutouts and the sumptuous, tactile fabric of the upholstery. ‘The design was initially inspired by the curves and aesthetic of an old tennis racket, and Loha’s working title throughout the design process was "The tennis chair”,’ adds Freja.

‘We’ve always liked the marriage of vintage furniture styles with more contemporary, modern features and silhouettes,’ says Home & Gift Senior Buyer Freja Ewers. ‘Once the foundations of a design are complete, that’s when the design team brings in our distinctive OB touches such as bold print, bright, contrasting colour combinations and texture or other unexpected twists we’ve come to be known for.’

Design stages

‘The furniture design team made the initial sketches by hand, which were then scanned into our design software to create digital templates that could be tweaked and worked upon before being sent to suppliers,’ explains Freja. ‘The supplier created a 3D visual drawing (render) so we could see the production possibilities and approve the final design, and then it was on to creating the first sample.’

The team tested the initial sample to ensure it was comfortable and to review the execution of the wood and cane elements. ‘Loha got the full "Goldilocks treatment" to check that it wasn’t too soft or too firm but just right,’ says Freja. ‘Our armchairs need to be tested to see how deep the seat is, how easy they are to get in and out of, how high up the armrests and backrests are. We want our pieces to be stylish and design-led, but they also must be comfortable and practical for day-to-day use.’

Introducing colour and texture

‘Originally we designed the Loha in a luxurious azure blue velvet, then extended the fabric colours to a warm coral orange and a rich moss-green shade,’ says Freja. ‘The jewel tones looked so sumptuous and inviting and they were very popular when they started arriving in stores. It’s almost impossible not to want to come up and stroke one!’


‘In short, this is the chair of dreams. I love the moss shade of green, rattan and smooth curves, which give my room a gorgeous mid-century look. It’s firm and comfortable. Love it.’

– Online review, Anonymous

The making of an icon

The Loha chair became a bestseller, so we introduced a further fabric option of cosy cream bouclé, which gives a gorgeous textural contrast against the smooth wood arms. Bouclé has been trending strongly in the furniture world, and it has become a firm favourite across our product ranges, from our Alma Floorlight to the Issey Mirror, our Rizado furniture and Tress chair. The Loha range itself was further developed to include a rocking chair, ottoman, sofa and storage stool.


‘It's absolutely stunning, the blue adds a wonderful pop of colour to our front room, it's really sturdy, well made and comfortable to sit in. We want to get another one for our bedroom.’

– Online review, Vera P

Care for your chair

Upholstered furniture needs a little care to keep it in pristine condition, and Loha is worth the attention. Loha should be kept indoors and moved between rooms carefully, without dragging the furniture, so as to protect the joints (and your floor). A simple lint roller can be used to pick up any fluff or marks, and a clothes steamer will remove scuffs or compression marks on velvet upholstery.

Dust the wooden legs with furniture polish and a cloth if needed, making sure not to get polish on the fabric. The chair fabric should never be cleaned with water, and spills should be removed with a dry cloth, dabbing at the affected area rather than rubbing. A reputable specialist dry cleaning service is recommended for more stubborn stains.