Ladder Back Chairs – A Little Piece Of History

Ladder back chairs get their name from the horizontal spindles or slats that make up the back rest and look similar to rungs of a ladder. They date back to the middle ages when they could be found in homes all over Europe and by the 17th century they were the most common type of chair that could be found in England. In Australia they became prevalent around the 1870’s and although they weren’t as pretty as some of the other chairs being produced at that time, they were probably the sturdiest.

Quick to make and practical

The ladder back chair evolved at a time when timber was plentiful while machinery for woodworking purposes was limited. At the time that these chairs were made, practicality was the name of the game, with less attention paid to the finish as it would have been for higher grade furniture. In fact, many of the chairs were simply sanded down and left whereas others were given a quick coat of varnish.


The construction of ladder back chairs was simple and they weren’t intended to stand out from other furniture. As such they were used for a variety of purposes including sitting on, stepping on, standing on, and even to hang newly made candles. They were handy little chairs to have around the house and took up very little space because of their small seats. Another advantage was that they could be easily carried around simply by tucking the back under an arm and holding on to one of the lower rungs. Due to their design, very little wood was needed to make several chairs, so they were cost effective too. One of the most popular designs was the ladder back rocking chair and this was nearly always featured in the movies of the time.

Collector pieces

Although they are simplistic, ladder back chairs are good looking in their own right and kind of comforting as it is a style most of us are familiar with. They’re still being produced today whereas the older ones have become highly collectable with some antique ones being sold for a tidy sum of money.

Modern day ladder back chairs


Today ladder back chairs are just as popular in cafes and bars as they have ever been and at Cafe Furniture Melbourne we have a good selection to choose from. Manufactured with either an oak or dark walnut frame they’re upholstered with a soft vinyl seat cushion in black, chocolate, charcoal and caramel, to give more flexibility when styling them with existing furniture and decor. Priced at under $90 they’re a real steal. Durable and long lasting, they’ll serve you well for many years and also come with a 12 month warranty. Why not take a look in our online store, download our latest furniture catalogue, or even drop by our Melbourne showroom. You’re guaranteed a warm welcome.

5 Cafe Food Trends That Will Reign Supreme in 2018

Just for a bit of fun we thought we’d focus this blog on the food trends that the experts predict will be happening in cafes all over Australia in 2018. Some of them sound more appealing than others, but hey it would be a boring place if we all liked the same things!

We’ve probably all had our fill of kale and chia, the 2 superfoods which ran rife in 2017, but the good news is that they’re having to move over to make way for the new kids on the block which are standing in the shadows and ready to burst into the limelight.

So, take a look, come up with some delicious recipes, and be ahead of your game. Good luck!

  1. Edible flowers – Yes, we’ve all seen these in some of the more posh restaurants but now it’s anticipated that they’re likely to be found in the local cafes in and around Melbourne as well as at home in your kitchen. In case you’re wondering which flowers to give your customers to nibble on ….. well lavender is the one to embrace.
  1. Functional mushrooms – Different from the normal field mushroom that you toss into your pasta or fry for your breakfast, these mushrooms have mostly been used as dietary supplements. They include those with exotic names such as lion’s mane, chaga, cordyceps and reishi, and will be making their debut in coffee cups and bottled drinks.
  1. Super powders – We’ll all be able to feel fighting fit in the mornings thanks to the addition of super powders such as turmeric, matcho, and cacao appearing in our smoothies and juice drinks.
  1. Tacos – The 2018 taco is likely to be a far shout from your average fast food variety. Expect to see taco shells made from seaweed, as well as paelo friendly and grain free creations.
  1. Plant based meat alternatives – Vegetarians rejoice. Plant based alternatives to fish and meat are going to bring happiness to vegetarians. Look for such things as sushi made from tomatoes instead of tuna and veggie burgers which ‘bleed’ like real meat.

So there you have it. I can’t wait to try some of the tomato sushi, myself. What about you?

If you’re looking for some swish new cafe furniture to set off your exciting new meals to your customers, then that’s something we can certainly help with. We stock an extensive range of cage tables, chairs, stools, and much more besides. Why not download our new furniture catalogue and browse our online store. Alternatively, you can always drop by our showrooms to try our furniture for yourself.