Author: emily

Rove Concepts Review

In my hunt for the perfect Eames Lounge Chair replica, naturally, I set out to inspect Rove Concepts. This company seems to pop up all over the internet whenever you search for something Eames Chair-related. They also have a lot of likes on Facebook, which is not very telling of a furniture company, especially one with such high prices. This isn’t Ikea we’re talking about. Before the horrors hidden behind this scam-riddled company, I want to give you some basic info on them first.

Rove Concepts, also called Rove, is a retailer of midcentury reproductions, with a physical store located in Vancouver, Canada. Most of their sales come from online, as it is an e-commerce company. It began business in 2010 and has seen a lot of growth. But it has a rather blemished reputation for both the quality of products, the life of products, the customer service and much more.

Ridiculously Expensive Chair with Shady Marketing Practices

Their top item, or their “flag-ship item,” as they market it, even though it’s spelled “flagship,” is the Eames Lounge Chair replica. Unlike most replica or reproductions, the Rove lounge chair costs about $1,800. I kid you not. This is the base price, meaning more fees will be attached, depending on the leather finishing of your choice.

I was really disappointed by this. Initially, I was excited by all the different colors of leather Rove offers: 20! I’ve not seen that many options for the Eames lounge replica on any other replica site. They also have three choices of wooden veneers, which if you hover above them, will read $0.00. But that is redundant, that’s not a positive quality. It’s basically Rove trying to counteract the fact that almost every choice of leather will cost you more money for the already expensive $1,800 chair, since each veneer is marketed as “free.” This is but the first shady tactic this company uses.

Another one is how misleading the pricing is on this site. After clicking the seating tab, I was taken to a page with the Eames lounge chair replica as the first chair, unsurprisingly. Below the chair, $1,695 was the listed price. As soon as I clicked on the link to the Eames lounge chair replica, the price was $1,795. How did $1,695 suddenly become $100 more expensive? Well, according to my conversation with the representative over the phone, who called himself “Alex,” $1,695 was the price of ONLY one combination of leather and veneer. It was only for the Modena Eggshell leather and Palisander veneer. Unbelievable! Nowhere on the product page did it even mention that sale. What’s even more spurious is that under the seating tab, $1,795 was crossed out next to the $1,695 price. How a company can so casually lie is beyond me.

Most Items Take 10-14 Weeks to Arrive, Swatches Take Over a Week

I’ve read countless reviews stating that Rove is notorious for its shipping. But I found that a bit odd, since it is an e-commerce company after all.  It should prioritize how soon their customers will receive their highly-priced items. But it does not. I spoke with a representative via chat. “Elly,” was so elusive, it took me three attempts on the chat for her to stay logged in and answer my questions. Red Flag! No sales person should be so evasive in manner with a potential customer. When she finally stayed on the chat, she confirmed the outrageously long wait times for Rove products. Here’s the short of it:

In-stock items: 7-18 business days

Out-of-stock items: 10-14 weeks= 2.5 months

Swatches: 6-8 business days

Are. You. Kidding. Me. This service could not be more horrid. Standard shipping will cost you $249, a fortune for the already super-high base markup of $1,795. By the way, only the first three leather options with Palisander wood veneers are in-stock. I wanted the Modena Terracotta (a nice caramel color) with the oak veneer and Elly said that it would have to be made “from scratch.” Ummmmmmm, that can be said about any product! It’s a deceptive way to say that it’s not in stock. So I would wait 2.5 months after paying $2,119. ($1,870.00 for the Modena Terracotta chair and $249 for standard shipping) Elly tried to downplay this by saying I would only pay 50% for the first few weeks, then the rest shortly before it ships. That makes no difference, as it would be the same price for an almost 3-month wait time.

Also, 8 business days for swatches? They are flat, tiny samples of the material that can literally fit in an envelope. It should take no more than 4 days at most.

Cheap Chinese Products Touted as American-Made

During my chat with Rove representative Elly, she pointed out how the products are made in Rove’s American warehouse. She mentioned this twice, without my having asked. I spoke with Rove reps before and know they outsource all their products in cheap, Chinese factories. She, however was hell-bent on making it seem like the Rove Eames lounge chair was produced in the USA. When I finally called her out, she said Rove products are assembled in the US warehouse but made in China. She could have said this the first time around; instead she took the misleading route. The fact that the Eames chair replica is assembled in the US does not change its quality when it is made in a Chinese factory.

Elly also copy/pasted the typical Rove response when you tell their reps that their products are Chinese-produced. (Try asking them yourself, they will give you the same response) The response was that they only use one factory that produces items for Rove alone.  Riiiiiiiight. Like some Chinese factory will limit themselves financially by only selling their junk to one company. Nope, not buying it.

This same response is used when you ask them why their Eames lounge chairs are far more expensive than most replicas, when they are made in China! It’s absurd they would even suggest that, as if their business with one factory would spike the cost of an Eames lounge replica. It doesn’t work like that; that’s not how economics works.

Aggressive Fake Users All Over Furniture Forums

I’ve read reviews how Rove employs fake users on several sites to spam their crappy products to naïve customers. I was skeptical, since I didn’t find such activity. Then I signed up for Houzz and Apartment Therapy, two websites that allow users to discuss interior design projects and the like. On many of the Eames lounge chair topic forums, Rove would hijack the conversations. But they spam in a subtle way. Ex: One fake user would post how horrible her experiences were with various Eames lounge replica retailers, from product to shipping, to customer service. Then when it came time to discuss her experience with Rove, she would have nothing but positive things to say. And she would post long paragraphs and pics of her Rove chair, but no pics or ANY evidence of the so-called bad chairs from other companies.

Rovers would interact positively with each other and verbally attack those who aren’t so fond of Rove. They would go on and on about how great their Eames chair is. Normal users do not act like that. They would not spend copious amounts of time to defend one company while bashing others and undermining people who have had truly bad experiences with Rove.

But, if anything shows that Rove employs people to spam these websites, it’s this: this guy “Mark Baldwin” was so rude to me when I so little as said I don’t want to wait for 18 days for a Rove chair.  I thought it was strange, how someone can be that rude when I said nothing personal to him; in fact I was not speaking to him at all. Another user was quick to recognize “Mark Baldwin” for the true spammer he is. As you can see in this shot, the URL is Roveconcepts15. Houzz uses your email alias to create a URL for an account. The Rove marketers were not too bright to sign up with their own email, but at least it proved that Rove spams thee websites and is not to be trusted.

The Verdict:

Cheap Chinese items that retail for 100%+ higher prices for their cheap, Chinese-factory-made products. Unscrupulous marketing tactics, lies upon lies, long waits for items to ship, poor communication and customer service. I say, all of that tallies up to: not worth it. If you are fine with purchasing products that are made in China, you should still avoid Rove like the plague. Why? Because at least with other Chinese-made retailers, you won’t be charged hundreds of dollars more than a product is actually worth. As far as quality is concerned, they don’t use Velcro or zippers for the Eames loungers; they use “clips,” a euphemism for thick staples to hold the leather together. This company is bordering heavily on a scam, no wonder it is not accredited with the Better Business Bureau.

http://www.scamorg.com/rove-concepts-dd

Elite Modern Furniture Review

EMFurn, or Elite Modern Furniture is a relatively new furniture replica company on the market. It is headquartered in Montreal, Canada and was founded in 2013. It sells modern furniture as well as replicas from the midcentury, beyond and earlier.  I came upon this company with good spirits as the prices aren’t suspiciously low, or ridiculously high. They are in the mid-range which is generally the best price to search for when seeking out quality reproductions. Before divulging my findings, I want to remark on how this is another Canadian company. I find it interesting how many Canadian companies are hopping on the midcentury reproductions bandwagon. American furniture replica companies need to step up their game, as the only replica companies, ie companies that make reproductions and don’t resell the Herman Miller chairs are Manhattan Home Design and Modern InDesigns.

Solid Homepage but Wrong Info of Designers:

I was impressed by the EMFurn website upon seeing the homepage because it is filled with nice content, looks easy to navigate, welcomes the company with an introduction and is not filled with commands to buy now, as is very common in other e-commerce sites. First impressions are important and the homepage definitely delivered on this front. However, I was not very thrilled with the introduction of the company at the bottom of the page. I can easily shrug off boasting and self-aggrandizement, since this is an important strategy to lure in potential customers. But what I don’t accept is plain lies, which in this case I suspect were not intentional, but it goes to show the lack of research on the part of the EMFurn team. What am I referring to? The introduction states:

“We offer you reproductions of iconic American furniture designs such as the Eames Lounge Chair, Barcelona Chair, Florence Knoll Sofa, the Womb Chair and Le Corbusier…”

The major problem with this claim is that not all of these designers are American, thus neither are their reproductions. The Barcelona chair, for example, was created by Mies van der Rohe who although immigrated to the USA, he had created the Barcelona chair with fellow German Lily Reich in Germany. In fact, that chair was noted as the German representative for the Spanish exposition. But I digress. Le Corbusier, another designer mistaken for being American was a French-Swiss designer. Sure the designs of these Europeans made their way across the pond into the US, but they themselves aren’t American. If they are not knowledgable on their own products, this is a huge problem; how will I know that I can trust their Eames lounge chair replica?

Few Products Details:

I want to iterate that I was overall impressed by the EMFurn homepage, but this feeling was short-lived. I hovered over to the midcentury tab and selected Charles and Ray Eames. Off the bat, I noticed they sell the entire cushioning set of the Eames lounge chair separately, which is not to say it doesn’t come with the chair, it was just available as a purchase. I wondered why anyone would need to buy just the cushion pieces of this chair. The page told me they were replacement cushions. This made me feel uneasy about their Eames lounge chair, as it is a hefty purchase price and size-wise. The fact that EMFurn is pointing out that they are for replacements is telling the chair is not fully assembled and might fall apart in no time. I couldn’t find anything on the product page or the FAQs about the assembly required for this Eames lounge chair.

Then, I noticed something relatively hidden: the page had a link which said “1 Questions Answered.” As it pertained to the Eames Lounge chair replica, I was curious. As it turned out, the question that was answered was in regards to the base and premium models that EMFurn offers of the chair. The base is a model that requires “some” assembly, though it doesn’t state how much or in what region of the chair. The premium model apparently focuses on quality and craftsmanship and comes fully assembled. First off, nowhere on the product page of the Eames chair does it mention that the chair comes in two models. What’s more disquieting is that the question page does not state how much more would the premium one cost. So essentially, the $949 cost of the chair is a false price. The real price is determined by the type of model, which really is the same model, but of different quality.

It’s bad enough that the product page only tells you the dimensions of the chair, its available colors and veneers and NOTHING about the materials used besides wood and leather. This is very suspicious; retailers are not supposed to hide vital information such as what makes up their product from potential customers. I couldn’t tell what the shockmounts are made of, what kind of cushioning is used, if the cushions of the seat and ottoman are interchangeable, let alone the stitching, piping and other properties. Heck, I cannot tell if there even ARE any shockmounts in the EMFurn chair. Companies that sell furniture should not be taking a bare-bones approach to their product descriptions, especially high-end ones that sell classic replicas.

Financing Available:

A very attractive trait of EMFurn is that they offer financing support. This shows that they care about all of their prospective customers, not just the ones who readily have $1,000 or more to dish out. An Eames chair replica is always expensive, even the ones that are sold at the lower end of the price spectrum like from Staples. They all approach the $1,000 dollar price. Unlike all the other Eames lounge chair replica sellers, EMFurn has a financing plan which allows the customer to pay small amounts over a certain amount of months to meet the required priced. Currently, the financing option is paying $25 a month, which seems very affordable. I rejoiced upon learning this, as a member of the working class.

Reasonable Pricing & Free Shipping:

At $949 for three wooden veneer choices: rosewood, dark walnut and ashwood and three leather colors: black, brown and white, the price seems very decent. There are very few colors available, but then there are three types of wooden veneers, which is pretty standard. The price isn’t supremely low, as I’d mentioned Staples above and Modern InDesigns in a different review, which charge in the 700-800+ ranges, respectively. It’s also nice that there’s no sales tax for North Americans and standard shipping is free. However, the site makes it clear that the chair will be dropped off at the curb of your driveway or sidewalk, which means you have to carry back to your home with no help from the EMFurn shippers.

I would be extra careful since they list very scarce details about the chair. I don’t know what materials go into the chair, where it was manufactured or for how long I will be warranted. That kind of cancels out the convenience of the price.

More Lies from the Site and Poor Customer Service:

In the About tab, EMFurn declares that as a company they:

“firmly believe that the customer comes before profit and so we place more emphasis on quality of product, quality of service…”

That’s all nice and dandy, but does it hold any truth? Unfortunately it does not. I couldn’t get a hold of any worker. Firstly, there is no chat option, which shows EMFurn is not as customer-centric as it claims to be. If service was a priority, there should be someone to answer questions via chat. As for the lying, the about page also says that someone is available on the phone virtually 24/7. That is a flat-out lie. I called both phone numbers on the website, the one on the contact us page and in the about page. Neither one was answered, mind you this was between the hours of 10-12 pm on a business day, which is a reasonable time. Thus, I am still unaware about the details of the EMFurn Eames lounge chair replica, where it is made and more.

The Verdict:

With little-to-no information about the EMFurn Eames lounge chair replica, I would not recommend buying from here, especially since it’s almost impossible to get a hold of any sales person. EMFurn does have great features like free shipping to US residents, international shipping and no sales tax for North Americans. It also helps you with financing the Eames lounge chair. But the covert way they inform of two types of assembly types and the lack of any service, I cannot laud the EMFurn Eames replica. But judging from the close-ups of the chair in the photos, it exudes a cheap look, which I can make an educated judgment about; it is likely to be made in China. The verdict: buy at your own risk, try to talk to someone to scope out all details before you buy.

Modern InDesigns Review

Modern InDesigns became of interest to me when I was seeking out the Eames Lounge Chair on the internet. I’ve not seen any legit Eames lounge chairs replicas in most furniture stores I frequent, except for some chairs that definitely look influenced by the Eames molded plastic woodleg side chair. They would have a similarly-shaped body. Anyway, as for the Eames lounge chair replica, some of my midcentury enthusiasts suggested I check out Modern InDesigns and here are my findings:

Good Price… Questionable Quality

What attracted me to this site the most is the pricing, which I consider one of the most important aspects of a purchase if not THE most. They offer all of their Eames Lounge chair replicas for only $895. A chair and ottoman for under $900 sounded like a great deal. For aniline leather you pay only $49 more. This seemed almost too good to be true.  And it was! First I was thrown off by how little was on the product page. Simplicity is great and all, but there needs to be more facts about the chair’s specifications and materials. After all, $900 is reasonable for the Eames chair replica, but a high price and an investment nonetheless.

There’s no information about the shock mounts (are ANY even included?), no mentions of a tilt (this IS supposed to be a lounge chair), no info on the cushioning or foam, nothing on the swivel, assemblage pieces, buttons. It doesn’t even declare anywhere whether their replica is a Herman Miller or a Vitro. The lack of information about their particular model is very problematic. Yet in the intro about this chair, it uses typical marketing rhetoric like “timeless,” “iconic,” and “highest quality material.” But how is that so if the product page cannot support this with any facts besides that it uses Italian leather, plywood and steel? Most Eames lounge chair fans already know about those 3 materials; they are the core of these chairs. Basically, from the lack of details, you can make an educated guess that the quality is subpar and they probably don’t use Velcro, memory foam or any other quality materials as aforesaid.

Lack of Communication

If you are on the prowl for an Eames lounge chair, you probably need to speak with a representative from the sales department, either on phone or via chat. Most companies I’ve come across in this market offer these means of assisting current or prospective customers. But Modern InDesigns offers no chat, so if you need answers immediately, there’s no avail. I tried emailing them and it took 3 days for them to respond to my simple questions of where there materials are from, and what makes up their Eames lounge chair replica. They pretty much beat around the bush in their response, saying the chair was made in “Asia.” That’s marketing talk for China. Surprise, surprise. They don’t offer silicone shock mounts like I feared and the wooden veneer is only on the exterior. They pretty much beat around the bush and did not respond to my other questions. So I tried to call them.

The website says they’re in operation from 10-6 pm. I work full-time from 9-6 but managed to squeeze in this phone call. No one answered the phone. What kind of business are they running? After having scoured the internet, I found reviews of other people who have experienced similar poor customer service, ie, with no one answering phones. That’s quite unacceptable, but what really struck me as a red flag was the people complaining about the non-existent customer service on the phone. These complaints came from paying customers!! The fact that there’s no customer service via the phone is understandable, heck, the mighty Amazon.com doesn’t even offer this. But if this is the case, it should be advertised as such. Instead, the Modern InDesign site conveys their phone service very misleadingly.  

Good Shipping and Delivery

As for the shipping and delivery, I was impressed. Their Eames lounge replica ships in only 3 days in the US with no taxes. There’s also no re-stocking fees for returns. They don’t offer free shipping though. Unfortunately, most companies don’t.

You Better Love Your Chair before You Get it: Difficulties With Cancellations

If you bought an Eames Lounge chair from this company and don’t absolutely love it, you’re in trouble, if you decided to cancel your order, that is. Here’s a Catch-22: the site states that all cancellations must be authorized in advance, and that this requires an assessment from a representative, which means you must contact Modern InDesigns to cancel the order. The assessment of the cancellation must be confirmed BEFORE the Eames lounge chair is processed and shipped, otherwise, the customer will incur the all inbound and outbound shipping fees. The quickest contact option to ensure this is done before the chair gets processed and shipped is by calling the company, but if no one answers the phone, or no one answers in a timely manner, who can this be done? It most likely cannot be done.

Any customer, whether they’re buying or cancelling should be treated fairly and not be placed in a Catch-22 situation. Cancelling an item, even an Eames lounge chair replica should not be this complicated.

The Chair Itself

If you’ve not read my analysis on quality, understand that the product page of the Eames lounge chair replica is very terse and lacking in details. Most companies accentuate the most minor of details if it posits their product in a good light. For the most marketed product under their midcentury collection/tab on the website, Modern InDesigns sure has a suspiciously reserved way of displaying it in that it does not mention crucial details and materials.  The cushioning on this chair and ottoman is mediocre, in that it is made of a cheap material. The cushion of the seat and ottoman are different sizes and are not interchangeable. There’s no mention of a swivel and other important details (refer to the Good Price… Questionable Quality section.) With the lack of specifications, it’s safe to assume this chair does not swivel, nor does it share the same specifications of the original lounge chair.

The Verdict

There’s a lot that Modern InDesigns provides, service-wise and price-wise that I find attractive, like the quick shipping and no taxes, and the low price of $895. However, the website’s lackluster and information-lacking product page is a huge turn-off for me. The silence on some major materials speaks volumes to me,  that this chair is not of decent value and construction. Also, I appreciate companies that are more open about themselves. With Modern InDesigns, I was unable to find anything about them, aside from their being a midcentury furniture replica company that ships across the USA. I have no idea when they began business, nor what makes them unique. They have no showroom, they’re strictly e-commerce, but what really boggles me is they offer NO SWATCHES!! I checked their site map and there was no “swatches” or “samples” keywords. Sorry, but how are customers to make educated decisions about the Modern InDesigns Eames lounge chair or any other furniture with no swatches, free or otherwise. They certainly won’t be able to from the poor product descriptions and photos. The verdict is: not worth it. As a paying customer, I shouldn’t have to bend over backwards to get basic info and a sample of the materials. The low price of their Eames Lounge chair replica speaks for itself.

http://www.resellerratings.com/store/Modern_In_Designs_14