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Dunbar Furniture

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.

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Creator: Dunbar
Dealer: Weinberg Modern
Dunbar For Modern: Market Notes, January 8 to January 19, 1951
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in New York, NY
Small format brochure published in January 1951 showcasing 39 Edward Wormley designs for Dunbar Furniture, presented at the Chicago Merchandise Mart. Highlights include the Sleepy Hollow chair...
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Dunbar Furniture

Materials

Paper

Pair of Edward Wormley "Alexandria" Chairs for Dunbar
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in New York, NY
Pair of sinuous “Alexandria” chairs in mahogany designed by Edward Wormley and produced by Dunbar Furniture circa 1961. One of Wormley’s signature des...
Category

1960s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Dunbar Furniture

Materials

Silk, Mahogany

Edward Wormley Chair for Dunbar Model 2424B
By Edward Wormley, Dunbar Furniture
Located in New York, NY
Sleekly sculptural chair with a radically slender, curved seat back designed by Edward Wormley and produced by Dunbar Furniture, c. 1940. An early modernist design by Wormley, in an organic design idiom, that transforms a traditional wingback chair...
Category

1940s American Organic Modern Vintage Dunbar Furniture

Materials

Fabric, Mahogany

Related Items
Edward Wormley for Dunbar Pair of Club Chairs
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Pair of side upholstered side chairs by Edward Wormley for Dunbar. Medium brown lightly textured fabric and dark brown lacquered wood base. Chairs have been completely redone. Wonder...
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Edward Wormley for Dunbar Mid Century Walnut Rosewood and Brass Headboard
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Edward Wormley for Dunbar mid century walnut rosewood and brass headboard This headboard is 55 wide x 2.5 deep x 37...
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1960's Pair of Vintage Chests by Edward Wormley for Dunbar
By Edward Wormley, Dunbar Furniture
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A magnificent pair of vintage chests, these were made in the USA by Dunbar furniture, they were designed by Edward Wormley. Edward Wormley was one of the leading pioneers of mid-cen...
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Edward Wormley for Dunbar Captain's "Y" Chair, ca. 1955
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
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Edward Wormley for Dunbar Captain's "Y" chair, ca. 1955. Professionally restored walnut frame with new back caning and new upholstered seat with super soft and luxurious ivory wool f...
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Edward Wormley King Size Headboard for Dunbar
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in San Francisco, CA
Edward Wormley design King size headboard for Dunbar Furniture, Berne Indiana. Featuring an ebonized mahogany frame with a caned backrest intended for a king size mattress, no rails ...
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1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Dunbar Furniture

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Edward Wormley for Dunbar Dining Chairs, Set of 8
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
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A set of 8 rare dining chairs designed by Edward Wormley for Dunbar. This set features two arm or "Captain's" chairs along with 6 side chairs. Great form with a gentle curved back an...
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Midcentury "Quinn" Chair by Edward Wormley for Dunbar, Model 1170, Walnut + Wool
By Dunbar Furniture, Gunlocke, Jens Risom, Edward Wormley
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"Quinn" chair, Model no. 1170 by Edward Wormley for Dunbar circa 1965. Sculpted walnut arms transition seamlessly to the upholstered back creating a wonderful silhouette. Frame is so...
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Edward Wormley for Dunbar Captain Chairs
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in Dallas, TX
One of Edward Wormley's most famous and elegant chairs. A timeless masterpiece. The Captain Chair. We have fully restored to highlight the beautiful polished brass, cane back, curve...
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20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Dunbar Furniture

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Edward Wormley for Dunbar Captain Chairs
Edward Wormley for Dunbar Captain Chairs
H 32.75 in W 24.5 in D 25.5 in
Flair Magazine, Complete Set, February 1950 to January 1951 (Book)
Located in North Yorkshire, GB
This is the complete set of the 12 monthly issues that were ever printed of "Flair", which at the time of its production was very stylish and innovative, it folded after only one yea...
Category

1950s Vintage Dunbar Furniture

Materials

Paper

Set of Six Edward Wormley for Dunbar Caned Dining Chairs
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in Rio Vista, CA
Labeled set of six mid-century modern caned dining chairs featuring new modern boucle upholstery redux. Iconic chairs designed by Edward Wormley for Dunbar having walnut frames in an angular design with an ebonized finish. The rectangular back has a cane inset...
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20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Dunbar Furniture

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Set of Four Edward Wormley for Dunbar Horned Dining Chairs
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Iconic and rare set of four horned antler chairs designed by Edward Wormley for Dunbar. Known as 5580 model dining chairs crafted from mahogany with a caned seat. Arguably these are ...
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Slipper Chair by Edward Wormley for Dunbar
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in New York, NY
Slipper chair by Edward Wormley for Dunbar. USA, circa 1950. Signed with brass tag. Features tufted back with piping. Original f...
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1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Dunbar Furniture

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Previously Available Items
Edward Wormley Cork-Top Game Table for Dunbar
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in New York, NY
Card or game table with a mahogany frame and a top surface of Danish cork. With laminated, cork-lined pull-out coasters and original brass ring pulls. Designed by Edward Wormley in 1...
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Dunbar Furniture

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Brass

Pair of Edward Wormley Janus Armchairs for Dunbar
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in New York, NY
Pair of armchairs with ebonized mahogany frames from Edward Wormley's Janus collection for Dunbar Furniture, circa 1958. Reupholstered circa 2006 in a vintage Dior raw silk.
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Dunbar Furniture

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Dunbar Book of Contemporary Furniture
By Dunbar Furniture
Located in New York, NY
First edition of the lavish 1956 Dunbar Furniture catalog, in black and white and color, featuring innovative layouts by Hockaday. The index in the back features specifications such ...
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1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Dunbar Furniture

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Paper

Dunbar Book of Contemporary Furniture
Dunbar Book of Contemporary Furniture
H 11.5 in W 10.25 in D 1 in
Edward Wormley Chest of Drawers for Dunbar
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in New York, NY
Handsome four drawer chest of drawers in walnut with leather-wrapped pulls. Designed by Edward Wormley for Dunbar Furniture. The superb details evident in this well-crafted piece inc...
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1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Dunbar Furniture

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Edward Wormley Bracket Back Sofa
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in New York, NY
Bracket back sofa with two-seat cushions and a row of buttons on the seat back. Designed by Edward Wormley and produced by Dunbar Furniture, circa 19...
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Edward Wormley Bracket Back Sofa
Edward Wormley Bracket Back Sofa
H 28 in W 91 in D 31 in
Sheaf of Wheat Table by Edward Wormley
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in New York, NY
"Sheaf of wheat" side table, model #5479, of figured, laminated ash with a brass connecting ring and a travertine marble-top. Designed by Edward Wormley and produced by Dunbar Furnit...
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1960s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Dunbar Furniture

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Travertine, Brass

Edward Wormley Swivel Chair for Dunbar
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in New York, NY
Swivel lounge chair designed by Edward Wormley and produced by Dunbar Furniture, circa 1958. With its original marigold velvet fabric. Retains original labels and signature ticking. ...
Category

1950s American Vintage Dunbar Furniture

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Edward Wormley Cocktail Table with Travertine Top
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in New York, NY
Large round cocktail table with dark mahogany base and figured travertine marble top in shades of tan, brown and gray. A clean, Asian-inflec...
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1960s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Dunbar Furniture

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Edward Wormley Tambour Front Cabinet
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in New York, NY
Tambour front cabinet with a teak top and facade, contrasting with walnut side panels and framing. Accents include brass pulls and sabots. The ta...
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Dunbar Furniture

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Brass

Rare La Gondola Sofa by Edward Wormley
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in New York, NY
Vintage "La Gondola" sofa, designed by Edward Wormley and produced by Dunbar Furniture, circa 1957. This example was featured in the landmark exhibition "Ed...
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Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Dunbar Furniture

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King-Size Caned Headboard by Edward Wormley
By Edward Wormley, Dunbar Furniture
Located in New York, NY
King-sized headboard with mahogany frame, caned back, and brass rods. The end pieces taper from bottom to top. Designed by Edward Wormley and produced by Dunbar Furniture, circa 1955...
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Dunbar Furniture

Materials

Brass

Edward Wormley Even-Arm Sofa for Dunbar
By Edward Wormley, Dunbar Furniture
Located in New York, NY
An elegant, comfortable and generously proportioned even-arm sofa with a mahogany base. Reupholstered in a heather gray fabric with greige piping. A hard-to-find and sophisticated 19...
Category

1950s American Modern Vintage Dunbar Furniture

Materials

Fabric, Mahogany

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 Furniture
  • 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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