PODCAST: Herman Miller archivist Amy Auscherman on the midcentury craze and what Mad Men got wrong

Attention: If you are notorious perfectionist and Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner, stop reading this right now, because what follows is probably going to upset you. Herman Miller archivist Amy Auscherman has some bad news: the show didn’t get its famed midcentury styling right 100 percent of the time, despite consulting Herman Miller at some stages in the set-design-and-dressing process.

“There is an organization named BIFMA that sort of sets the regulations for the office furniture industry,” Amy tells us, “so the chairs that we’re sitting on have five legs on their casters...in an effort to make them more stable. Before, in the ‘70s, chairs were on four legs, and so it was a lot easier to sort of fall over. In one of the episodes, [Mad Men] had Eames Time-Life chairs on five-star bases.”

That’s right, Matthew, hang your head in shame.

Auscherman, who joined the hosts of our podcast, the Curbed Appeal, this week, also talked to us about Herman Miller’s long, illustrious history, and the renowned designers whose work the Michigan-based company has produced (like George Nelson, Alexander Girard, and, of course, Ray and Charles Eames).

Listen to the episode below or read it in full right here