Aldi selling replica Eames chairs

Discount supermarket chain Aldi is selling pairs of replica Eames chairs for £39.99 – a fraction of the £339 it costs to buy a single authorised version of the chair.
Aldi is advertising "a pair of retro-style Eiffel chairs" on its website in the UK for £39.99 – the latest in a string of replica designs sold at heavy discounts by the budget supermarket chain.
The Eiffel chairs are almost identical in appearance to the DSW Eames Plastic Chair, designed by Charles and Ray Eames in 1950 and produced under license by Swiss design brand Vitra.


The similarity between the designs has been flagged on social media, with furniture designer Rupert Blanchard sharing images of the Aldi version of the chairs from one of its stores in London.
Oliver Wainwright, architecture and design critic at the Guardian newspaper, defended Aldi on Twitter. "Isn't this exactly what Charles Eames would have wanted?" he tweeted. "The licensing model that sees Eames designs elevated to luxury collectibles goes utterly against everything they stood for."
He added: "If a licensed original costs £333 and a pair of copies is £39.99, I think Charles Eames would tear that license right up".
It is not the first time the global supermarket chain has offered imitations of the Eames' designs. It has also sold replicas of Mies van der Rohe and Lilly Reich's Barcelona Chair and Philippe Starck's Ghost Chair at stores in countries like Australia, where copyright law allows copies to be sold as long as they are clearly labelled as a replicas.
However, new copyright legislation will come into effect this summer, under the repeal of section 52 of the Copyright, Designs and Patent Act 1988, extending the copyright period to 70 years from the designer's death.