In the 1960s Wegner began nursing an idea that was to take more than thirty years to come to fruition. His idea was to design a chair where ‘you have a lattice hanging in a frame’. He said, he imagined the frame as a ring, and it seemed obvious to design this in steel rather than timber.
Ref: Hans J. Wegner. A Nordic Design Icon from Tønder. Edited by Anne Blond.
The workshop of PP Møbler was where Wegner went in the 1980s to experiment and work on concrete models of new designs. It was here one day that he mentioned his old idea of making a large circular lounge or easychair, but since he envisioned it being made of steel, it was not an assignment the cabinetmakers at PP could help him with. As it turned out, neither of these things came to pass. Wegner succeeded in converting his design from steel to wood, and PP Møbler succeeded in producing a functional wooden ring.
In the end, the solution for executing the completely circular shape was not to steam bend the wood, but
construct the ring of laminated slats just like the original bowed frame of the Peacock Chair, only with the extra challenge of having to complete the circle and join the ring. This construction was devised by PP’s employees, who also invented and built an advanced clamping tool that could press, hold and securely join the 11 layers of wooden slats required to form a laminated ring of sufficient strength. PP130, the Circle Chair, was given legs and supports of solid wood and finished with a ‘lattice’ of flag halyard, just as Wegner had imagined. A single, 80-metre-long length of halyard was used, woven like a hammock in the back, and tensioned to form a straight supporting seat. It was finished with a knot that hung visibly under a loose seat cushion.
The result was a chair that, aside from a certain resemblance to the Tub Chair from 1953, had no clear antecedents in Wegner’s back catalogue. Just like the Flag Halyard Chair (PP225), however, it was big enough to sit comfortably with one’s legs tucked up underneath or have a child on one’s side reading a book. .