Michael Thonet (1796-1871) used steam-bent wood to mass produce chairs that could be shipped in pieces for easy assembly at their destination. Thonet came to Vienna at the behest of Metternich himself who had seen Thonet's work at a trade fair in Germany in 1841. Thonet was able to make a presentation to the Imperial Family. He emigrated to Vienna shortly thereafter.
His most famous creation is the Number 14 chair. Also known as the bistro chair, the No. 14 won a gold medal at the 1867 Paris World's Fair. This became the most popular chair for cafes and bistros. Over 50 million were sold between 1860 and 1930.