Thonet and winter sports

Thonet and winter sports

Winter sports might not be the first thing you associate with Thonet, the furniture maker from Frankenberg with a long history. Nevertheless, photos in our archive show that over 100 years ago the Thonet portfolio did indeed include winter sports equipment – from children’s sledges and toboggans to skis, snowshoes and kick sledges.

However, the idea that Thonet would make such products is actually not such an odd one after all, as early winter sports equipment, just like the famous 214 coffee house chair (previously the No. 14), was made from bent wood.

Thonet and winter sports
Thonet and winter sports

A catalogue from 1904 shows pictures of the products themselves and also includes instructions on how to use the equipment. The instructions for the kick sledge read as follows: “The sledge consists of two long, thin runners with a post and handlebar in the middle; the front half of the sledge has a bench-like seat while the back has foot plates fitted directly to the runners for the rider to stand on. How to ride the sledge is then self-explanatory: the rider fastens the crampons to his shoes and keeps a firm grip on the handlebar attached to the posts. He then stands with one foot positioned on the runner, and uses the other foot to push off with a long, powerful kick.” 

Thonet and winter sports

Something for everyone

Thonet winter sports products were offered in a range of different models: various bindings for skis, poles made of beech or ash wood and sledges with a backrest or footrest.

Today, we still offer our products in a range of different models, albeit now for settings a long way away from the slopes. The S 32/S 64 chair, for example, comes in a canework model, one with synthetic mesh, an upholstered version and even a combination variant (upholstered seat, canework or synthetic mesh back).


Limited special edition at Heldbergs

Thonet and winter sports

Anyone interested in a Thonet sledge today should have a look at the Heldbergs online shop. The shop is offering a limited special butt-leather edition (20 units) of the model S 333, a modern-day take on a tubular steel sledge, based on a design by Holger Lange from 2007.

To the Edition

The second material typically associated with Thonet, namely tubular steel, is also the perfect material for a sledge that glides beautifully across the snow.

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CAD data for individual products and factsheets can be found on the product pages in the product catalogue.
CAD data for collective download as well as reference pictures and company-related information can be found in the media database.