Think 'rocking chair' and the image that probably comes to mind is one of Granny under a crocheted blanket or a mother nursing a newborn. But a clutch of international designers is taking this most traditional of furniture pieces and making it hip and modern enough for any contemporary space.
Italian furniture house Ligne Roset (ligne-roset.com) has created the Neo rocker (top right; US$1,745 to US$2,230), which looks like a sleek high-backed chair, until you ease into it and feel it gently rock. The chair was designed by Alban-Sebastien Gilles and comes with or without arms, which are available in ebony-stained oak or polished aluminium. For details, contact Ligne Roset in Hong Kong at 2891 0913.
The Landscape chair (second from top), designed by Jeffrey Bernett for B&B Italia (tel: 3102 3189; www.bebitalia.com ), has a recliner/chaise longue vibe, which makes the fact that it rocks a pleasant surprise. The streamlined shape is anchored by a frame in bronzed nickel or bright chromed steel, and the seating can be ordered in fabric, leather or pony skin. A headrest adjusts with the use of a magnet. It retails for about US$4,500.
Tapping into the recyclable/eco-chic ethos is Leo Kempf's Tired Lounge rocker (third from top), available through Chicago gallery 360See (360seegallery.com). Retailing for US$2,400, the curved chair is made from Forest Stewardship Council-certified birch and swathed in recycled tyres.
Currently in pre-production (hence the price has yet to be set) is Japanese designer Daisuke Motogi's Flip chair series, so named because the chair doubles as a rocker and a lounger (bottom right). It is made of urethane and comes in eye-popping colours including turquoise and citrine. According to Motogi, the chairs will be available by April through Japanese design house Sixinch (sixinch.jp).