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Dunbar

American

Revered for its handcrafted and highly collectible mid-century modern sofas, coffee tables and other furnishings, Dunbar Furniture was founded in 1910 in Berne, Indiana, but it didn’t gain widespread recognition until the ’30s, following the introduction of its president to a designer who would leave an indelible mark on the company’s legacy: Edward Wormley.

After a stint at the Art Institute of Chicago, the Oswego, Illinois-born Wormley worked as an interior designer for Marshall Field’s before joining Dunbar in 1931. Initially focused on developing the company’s cheapest furniture line, which could be bought with soap coupons, he was soon leading Dunbar Furniture into a new era of residential furniture for modern American homes. He would serve as the company’s design director for over three decades, designing about 150 pieces each year.

During that time, he oversaw the production of designs in a wide range of materials, with influences ranging from Scandinavian modernism to Art Deco. There were modern upholstery pieces, like swiveling lounge chairs and low-slung sofas, and experiments with textural wood on bar carts and cabinets as well as minimal, sculptural tables and functional office furniture. A passionate collector of Tiffany Studios lamps, Wormley used their glass tiles in Dunbar tables in 1956. He also worked on the reproduction of pieces by designers such as Jean-Michel Frank and Richard Riemerschmid.

One standout Dunbar Furniture collection was Janus, introduced in the 1960s, with Austrian-born ceramicists Otto and Gertrud Natzler. These pieces see the Natzlers’ uniquely artful ceramic tiles set into several styles of wooden tables. They remain some of the most sought-after mid-century modern Dunbar pieces on the vintage market today. During the peak of his design career and, indeed, the height of Dunbar Furniture’s history, Wormley amassed a whopping 30 Good Design awards between 1950 and 1955 through the “Good Design” exhibition, hosted by the Chicago Merchandise Mart and the Museum of Modern Art. Dunbar today produces a limited selection of archival Wormley designs, but many sales of original Dunbar pieces are through the resale market.

Find a collection of authentic vintage Dunbar Furniture today on 1stDibs.

Edward Wormley for Dunbar Large Scale Square Coffee Table in Mahogany for Dunbar
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in Dallas, TX
This beautiful, large-scale coffee table was designed by Edward Wormley for Dunbar Furniture in the 1960s and is constructed with a mahogany parquetry top and a dark mahogany frame w...
Category

Mid-20th Century Dunbar

Materials

Mahogany

Vintage Wormley Tawi Conference or Dining Table for Dunbar
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in Pasadena, TX
Rare beautiful wood 12 feet to 14 feet 1/2 vintage Wormley extension dining/conference table for Dunbar This came from the executive conference room of the former Bank of the Southw...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Dunbar

Materials

Wood

Edward Wormley for Dunbar Sheaf of Wheat Table, Terrazzo Marble Top
By Edward Wormley, Dunbar Furniture
Located in Chicago, IL
Edward Wormley for Dunbar Sheaf of Wheat Table, Terrazzo Marble Top, and hourglass mahogany base held together with a solid brass ring. Dimensions: 30" diameter (top) 20" high
Category

1950s American Vintage Dunbar

Materials

Brass

Set of 4 Edward Wormley Janus Lounge Chairs
By Edward Wormley, Dunbar Furniture
Located in Chicago, IL
The Edward Wormley 5701 chair for Dunbar's Janus Collection is a true masterpiece of mid-century modern design. This stunning chair is upholstered in a Holly Hunt's Great Plains heav...
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Dunbar

Materials

Brass

Edward Wormley Party Server for Dunbar
By Edward Wormley, Dunbar Furniture
Located in Chicago, IL
The Edward Wormley bar cart is a timeless piece of furniture that embodies both style and function. It is a versatile piece that is perfect for entertaining guests or simply enjoying...
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Dunbar

Materials

Walnut, Pine

Edward Wormley Party Server for Dunbar
Edward Wormley Party Server for Dunbar
H 31.5 in W 27.5 in D 21 in
Janus Lounge Chairs by Edward Wormley for Dunbar
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in Chicago, IL
The Edward Wormley 5701 chair for Dunbar's Janus Collection is a true masterpiece of mid-century modern design. This stunning chair is upholstered in a Holly Hunt's Great Plains heav...
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Dunbar

Materials

Brass

Edward Wormley for Dunbar Credenza Model, 5668A, C. 1950s
By Edward Wormley, Dunbar Furniture
Located in Westport, CT
A mid-century modern gem, this mahogany credenza by Edward Wormley for Dunbar exudes timeless elegance. Meticulously restored, its sleek design and ample storage make it a versatile ...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Dunbar

Materials

Mahogany

Set of Matching Mirrors by Edward Wormley for Dunbar, 1950s
By Edward Wormley, Dunbar Furniture
Located in Westport, CT
Rare set of matching mirrors designed by Edward Wormley for Dunbar, circa 1950s. Mahogany framing and caning fully restored. Original mirrors i...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Dunbar

Materials

Cane, Mahogany

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Dunbar furniture for sale on 1stDibs.

Dunbar furniture are available for sale on 1stDibs. These distinctive items are frequently made of wood and are designed with extraordinary care. There are many options to choose from in our collection of Dunbar furniture, although brown editions of this piece are particularly popular. Many of the original furniture by Dunbar were created in the mid-century modern style in north america during the 20th century. If you’re looking for additional options, many customers also consider furniture by Edward Wormley, Paul McCobb, and Milo Baughman. Prices for Dunbar furniture can differ depending upon size, time period and other attributes — on 1stDibs, these items begin at $225 and can go as high as $119,500, while a piece like these, on average, fetch $5,998.
Questions About Dunbar
  • 1stDibs ExpertMarch 22, 2022
    Dunbar furniture is made in High Point, North Carolina. The original location of the company was Berne, Indiana. Its relocation occurred after Currey & Co. bought Dunbar from founder James Wormley in 1970. On 1stDibs, shop a selection of Dunbar furniture.

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