Iconic Design Through the Ages - Norton - Parker Knoll
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Iconic Design Through the Ages – Norton

Iconic Design Through the Ages – Norton

Established for over 150 years, we are well renowned for designing and developing the best of British sofas and chairs to the highest possible quality. We are proud of our unique heritage, and these values remain at the heart of our business, as they have since 1869. Our designers are experts at taking inspiration from our historic models and elevating them into modern-day staples, you simply won’t be able to live without. Norton is a perfect example of how we can hone in on our wealth of experience and create something truly magical.

Parker Knoll Chipping Norton manufacturing facility circa 1962.

Historic Designs

In 1960, recliner chairs started appearing overseas and quickly became the must-have item for many homes, companies such as Lazy Boy had been unsuccessful in launches to the British market in previous years. However, undoubtedly the impact of the Parker Knoll recliner would be immensely greater due to the well-established public knowledge of our reputation. In 1966, we began production of our first recliner chair, the N30. At the time, the N30 was the most expensive chair ever marketed by the company. Despite this, by early 1967, just a year after launch, manufacturing was moved to the Chipping Norton factory to allow for the sheer demand of orders. By its 25th birthday, almost a quarter of a million recliners had been sold, placing it as one of our much-loved classics.

Vintage Parker Knoll Advertisement for Homes & Gardens (1969)

Contemporary Furniture

Fast forward 53 years (2019) later, a somewhat familiar chair was introduced into our LifeStyle collection as part of our 150th Birthday Celebration. Our designers took inspiration from the iconic N30 to revolutionise the meaning of comfort and create a contemporary yet practical chair. The chair was named the Norton, after the factory that production had moved to in Chipping Norton.


Norton 150+ is pictured here in Latitude Natural

Focusing on key design features from the 1960s, our design team decided to use the iconic curved arms with back stitch detailing to give it a distinctive retro style. Unlike the N30, the Norton was modernised to include state-of-the-art mechanisms. A recliner with a motorised headrest meant we were able to redefine the meaning of comfort. Norton is also available in a Rise and Recline option, taking you from standing to fully reclined in a smooth motion, using a 6-button remote control.

Style it your way

Norton 150+ is pictured here in Orion Ochre

Versatility is at the heart of what we do, our extensive fabric collection means that our furniture can be accessible to all interior design tastes. Whether you are looking to add a pop of colour or simply stick to neutral, we’ve got you covered. The perfect cosy corner chair, Norton can be paired alongside our LifeStyle collection or on its own as a stand-alone chair to complete your living space. Adding greenery  is the perfect way to add positive and calming energy to our space this Summer.

Handmade to order in the heart of Nottinghamshire, and crafted just for you with care. We are so confident in the quality of all of our sofas and chairs that each purchase comes with a 25-year guarantee. Head over to our Instagram and search #parkerknollchair to see how our much-loved chairs last for generations.

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