KVAN x Bethier revive iconic Walter Outfit chair
In 1980, French Designer and Industrial Architect Marc Berthier introduced the Walter Outfit, a folding chair renowned for its comfort, functionality, lightweight design, and versatility. Now, almost 40 years later, and in honor of the late designer’s enduring legacy following his passing in 2022, urban planning studio KVAN has made the decision to revive this piece. To commemorate Berthier’s visionary work, they are releasing a limited edition of 100 numbered copies of the iconic chair.
front view of the Walter Outfit chair | all images © Kate Devine
embracing lightness and versatility
The Walter Outfit, crafted by Marc Berthier, stands as an embodiment of his lifelong pursuit of both physical and spiritual lightness. Originally designed for indoor use, the emblematic chair features leather cushions, but its true essence lies in its versatile nature as an ‘inside-outside’ seating solution. Fitting seamlessly into verandas, balconies, terraces, and gardens, its lightweight construction makes it effortlessly portable. ‘The objective was to obtain maximum comfort with reduced means. I was also looking for a form of lightness that was not just physical, but rather a state of mind.’ the renowned French designer said. ‘I think I got there.’
According to Berthier, this state of mind is derived from experiences in water sports and coastal environments, which contribute to Walter’s innate adaptability. Its boat-shaped armrests provide ample space for a drink, coffee, book, notebook, or tablet. It even accommodates breakfast on a tray. Berthier envisioned the chair as a captivating counterpoint, a desirable and distinctive alternative to the usual bulkiness of traditional living room armchairs. Its comfort and elegance surpass those of the humble beach chairs that inspired its creation. ‘I drew Walter over 40 years ago. Today, I pencil, take notes, or reflect almost daily. I still like him, I guess that’s a good sign.’ the designer mentioned shortly before his passing.
thanks to its lightweight, the chair fits into verandas, balconies, terraces, and gardens
focusing on precision and sustainability
The chair is now reissued in a limited edition series produced by the Paris-based collaborative studio that is formed by KVAN and Marc Berthier. Handcrafted in Italy by the very artisans who collaborated closely with Marc Berthier during its inception, the Walter Outfit chair is a beacon of the French industrial designer’s craftsmanship. Its beech structure proudly bears the European FSC certification, ensuring its commitment to responsible and sustainable forestry practices. The backrest and seat are crafted from durable cotton, providing both comfort and resilience, while the cushion covers boast the touch of genuine vegetable-tanned cowhide leather.
Assembly is achieved using simple Allen keys, allowing for a quick and hassle-free setup. With dimensions measuring 99 x 101 x 72 cm, the Walter Outfit chair strikes a harmonious balance between size and functionality. Embracing an eco-conscious approach, the piece is exclusively available through a pre-order system through the To minimize the ecological footprint, deliveries will be scheduled promptly as soon as the limited edition of 100 chairs is sold.
side view of the Walter Outfit chair
rear view of the Walter Outfit chair
the chair’s versatile nature makes it an ideal ‘inside-outside’ seating solution
the boat-shaped armrests provide ample space for a drink, coffee, book,
name: Walter Outfit
designer: Marc Berthier
reissued by: KVAN x Bernier
photography: Kate Devine
myrto katsikopoulou I designboom
may 21, 2023