The New York Times has an article in the Home & Garden Section about what the true Classics will be in the year 2050. Julie Lasky discusses pieces that designers or manufacturers have deemed "icons" based on number of sales, or fakes made. Whether a design is "an oak or a seed" is a colorful comparison made by another and it makes sense. There is also discussion that lasting designs must appeal to a person's emotions whilst being imaginative and resourceful. We like that. And we like the fact that in Laskys last sentence, she references that: "Anything that manages to run that gantlet will be a gift to our descendants."
Obviously - being primarily a children's retailer - we are drawn to the idea of designs being gifts to our descendants. Isn't that why we save any other family heirloom? To pass it on to the next generation, as unwilling as they may be to accept it? My parents' basement is filled with furniture that's been in the family for years. My sister and I don't fight over who gets the milkglass lamps because they look cool, but because they belonged to our great-great-aunt. AND because they look cool!
Designs like the Eames Lounge or Panton Chair really are classics. If they have run rampant for the last 50 years or so, who's to say they won't go for another 50? The truth is we can't accurately predict any of this stuff. Styles change, technology changes, the economy changes, the environment changes... though our needs as humans will always be simple and constant, what is drilled into us as a DESIRE is different every generation.
If the reason you love your Nelson Platform Bench is because it looks great in your foyer, your children probably won't grow up seeing it as a desirable piece despite it's classic appeal. But if that bench belonged to your parents and you associate it with waiting for the bus to come on rainy days, it seems you've turned that hunk of wood into an heirloom. You've given it value and meaning. And that didn't happen because it's sold however many pieces since 1946, or because it's spawned hundreds of knock-offs.
At Modernseed we endeavor to offer and encourage the best in design: quality pieces we hope you'll order and then love for years to come. Design should enhance your life, and encourage creativity and resourcefulness. And to some of us, that is a necessity.