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Sunday, October 23, 2011

Hold my place

Some of you may have noticed that Nick from Mid-Century Midwest and I were having some difficulty receiving items we had ordered from The Foundary.

A couple of weeks ago they offered reproduction George Nelson clocks by Verichron at prices so low I couldn't afford to pass one up. I ordered the spindle clock (which I think is what Nick ordered too).

The delivery date we had been given came and went...and went...and went. Nick and I were calling the company almost daily to find out when our clocks were going to arrive and griping back and forth about it on our blogs. We weren't as upset as we would have been if we'd paid for vintage Nelson clocks that had tragically been lost in the mail. But we did expect to get the repros we spent our hard-earned money on!

Mine finally arrived yesterday, and I have to say that it more than met my expectations. I've said in several posts that I don't find reproductions as déclassé as some people do. In fact, I think they are perfectly fine if you're not a collector and just want a "look." I also think they're satisfactory place holders for collectors who are still looking for an affordable vintage piece, which is why I bought the clock. I'll keep scouring eBay and CL and auctions for a steal on a real Nelson clock, but in the meantime I'm rid of the cheesy mirror that was hanging in my alcove.

Obviously, the Verichron spindle clocks aren't Nelson twins, but neither are the Vitra re-issues, which cost almost $500. The vintage Howard Miller Model #2239 Spool/Spindle clock was 22.5" in diameter and had a black hour hand and a white minute hand. The spindle clocks currently sold by Vitra are 22.75" in diameter and have white hour hands and orange minute hands.

The Verichron spindle clock is only 19" in diameter, and it has a white hour hand and orange minute hand like the Vitra clock does. The only really unfortunate thing is that they printed "George Nelson" on the face. (Ack!) While it's obviously not the real thing, for the price I paid, it will do just fine till a vintage Nelson drops out of the sky into my lap.

Here's hoping that Nick's finally arrived too.

Vintage George Nelson spindle clock for Howard Miller

Vitra George Nelson re-issue

My Verichron repro

So much better, in my opinion, than
the Hobby Lobby mirror I had there!


  1. What a beautiful vignette in the bottom photo :)

  2. So beautiful! Glad it arrived safely.

  3. Glad to see that yours finally arrived. Yes, I got mine too! Head over to for an in-depth review.

  4. @Rachael: Thanks! I had rearranged furniture for a while, but I missed the way that little corner looked, so back everything went.

  5. @Jenny: Thanks! It will serve its purpose till I get the real thing. The Vitra name might be worth something to some folks, but it's not worth an additional $430 to me. :)

  6. OMG!! this is super cool..i m glad it arrived

  7. @Sudha: I was about to give up on receiving it, but it finally got here in good shape.

  8. Dana, thank you for the way in which you explained your open minded point of view about reproductions or "in the style of" pieces. This topic has produced some very opinionated, strong responses in blogs. I also feel like we have a right to have the "look" we desire in MCM decor even when we don have the big bankroll.

    1. I liken good reproductions to generic drugs. Most people don't have any qualms about buying generic drugs if it saves them money...but only if the quality is good. If the manufacturer makes an inferior product, that's another thing altogether.

      Design patents are only good for 14 years, and after that, it's entirely legal to make reproductions. I bought reproduction George Nelson clocks for a grouping in my house. I chose them carefully for their faithfulness to the original design and will use them till I can find real Nelson clocks at a price I can afford. That said, I have an intense personal dislike for a lot of the cheap, tacky mid-century knock-offs being made today. They do a disservice to the designer.