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Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Edward Wormley (USA, 1907–95)
Edward Wormley (USA, 1907–95)

As the longtime director of design for the Dunbar furniture company, Edward Wormley was, along with such peers as George Nelson at Herman Miller Inc., and Florence Knoll of Knoll Inc., one of the leading forces in bringing modern design into American homes in the mid-20th century. Not an axiomatic modernist, Wormley deeply appreciated traditional design, and consequently his work has an understated warmth and a timeless quality that sets it apart from other furnishings of the era.

Wormley was born in rural Illinois and as a teenager took correspondence courses from the New York School of Interior Design. He later attended the Art Institute of Chicago but ran out of money for tuition before he could graduate. Marshall Field hired Wormley in 1930 to design a line of reproduction 18th-century English furniture; the following year he was hired by the Indiana-based Dunbar, where he quickly distinguished himself. It was a good match. Dunbar was an unusual firm: it did not use automated production systems; its pieces were mostly hand-constructed. For his part, Wormley did not use metal as a major component of furniture; he liked craft elements such as caned seatbacks, tambour drawers, or the woven-wood cabinet fronts seen on his Model 5666 sideboard of 1956. He designed two lines for Dunbar each year — one traditional, one modern — until 1944, by which time the contemporary pieces had become the clear best sellers.

Many of Wormley’s signature pieces are modern interpretations of traditional forms. His 1946 Riemerschmid Chair — an example is in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art — recapitulates a late 19th-century German design. The long, slender finials of his Model 5580 dining chairs are based on those of Louis XVI chairs; his Listen-to-Me Chaise (1948) has a gentle Rococo curve; the “Precedent” line that Wormley designed for Drexel Furniture in 1947 is a simplified, pared-down take on muscular Georgian furniture. But he could invent new forms, as his Magazine table of 1953, with its bent wood pockets, and his tiered Magazine Tree (1947), both show. And Wormley kept his eye on design currents, creating a series of tables with tops that incorporate tiles and roundels by the great modern ceramicists Otto and Gertrud Natzler. As the items on 1stDibs demonstrate, Edward Wormley conceived of a subdued sort of modernism, designing furniture that fits into any decorating scheme and does not shout for attention.

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Edward Wormley Chaise Lounge
By Edward Wormley, Dunbar Furniture
Located in Chicago, IL
Wormley for Dunbar, left arm chaise, model 5524, solid walnut frame, with 3 newly down filled cushions reupholstered with Great Plains wool felt (gold label underside DUNBAR).
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Upholstery, Walnut

Edward Wormley for Dunbar Laminated Rocking Chaise Prototype
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in Chicago, IL
Category

1960s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Leather, Cane, Oak

Edward Wormley Rocking Chaise Lounge for Dunbar, circa 1955
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in Costa Mesa, CA
Edward Wormley rocking chaise lounge for Dunbar, circa 1955. Professionally restored and upholstered in Maharam Mohair.
Category

20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Mohair, Cane, Oak

1940s Rocking Chaise Lounge by Edward Wormley for Dunbar
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in Sagaponack, NY
An adjustable rocking chaise with caned seat and back with bent ash frame and a cushion upholstered in grey savak with natural leather welting.  
Category

1940s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Wool, Cane, Ash

1950s "Listen-To-Me" Chaise by Edward Wormley for Dunbar
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in Sagaponack, NY
An elegant chaise lounge with an undulating cushion in vintage upholstery with a cherry and maple base and solid brass supports. Model: 4873.
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Brass

Edward Wormley Lounge and Ottoman
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in Chicago, IL
Category

1960s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Bronze, Leather, Rosewood

Dunbar Tête-à-Tête Sofa by Edward Wormley
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in Dallas, TX
Beautiful new upholstery in a plush velvet. Hard to find and rarely available, a 1950s Dunbar tete-a-tete sofa. Mahogany legs, brass caps.
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Upholstery, Mahogany

Rare Dunbar Gray Leather Sofa Chaise, Expertly Reupholstered
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in Kansas City, MO
Rare Edward Wormley for Dunbar sofa chaise. One arm with a rolled cushion that is attached via a mechanism that the cushion spins. Expertly reupholstered in grey Spinneybeck leather.
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Leather, Mahogany

Edward Wormley for Dunbar Chaise Longue Sofa
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in Chicago, IL
Edward Wormley for Dunbar chaise longue sofa.
Category

Mid-20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Upholstery

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Edward Wormley for Dunbar Sofa
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Edward Wormley for Dunbar Loose Cushion Sofa
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Kittenger Circular Chaise
By Harvey Probber, Kittinger
Located in Chicago, IL
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Edward Wormley Big Texan Sofa for Dunbar in Blue Mohair
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Pair of Edward Wormley Lounge Chairs
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Edward Wormley Mirror
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Edward Wormley Sideboard
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in Chicago, IL
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Leather, Walnut

Previously Available Items
Edward Wormley Chaise Lounge
By Edward Wormley, Dunbar Furniture
Located in Chicago, IL
Wormley for Dunbar early chaise. Asymmetrical resting arm. Reupholstered with Great Plains cotton-poly. button tufted deck with down filled back cushions and bolster. Solid walnut ...
Category

1940s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Upholstery, Walnut

  • Edward Wormley Chaise Lounge
  • Edward Wormley Chaise Lounge
  • Edward Wormley Chaise Lounge
  • Edward Wormley Chaise Lounge
H 30 in. W 78.5 in. D 31 in.
Rare Daybed by Edward Wormley for Dunbar, circa 1960
By Edward Wormley, Dunbar Furniture
Located in Costa Mesa, CA
Rare daybed by Edward Wormley for Dunbar. Upholstered with tapering Tawi wood legs, circa 1960.
Category

20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Fabric, Wood

Chaise Longue by Edward Wormley for Dunbar
By Edward Wormley
Located in Dallas, TX
A rare chaise lounge on mahogany base. Designed by Edward Wormley for Dunbar.
Category

1960s Vintage Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Edward Wormley Rare Tufted "Wedge Sofa" 1963 'Signed'
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in New York, NY
Rare and important "Wedge Sofa" / Recamier chaise model no. 6310A fully tufted with hand-turned mahogany legs by Edward Wormley for Dunbar, 1963. Signed “Dunbar / Berne, Indiana” wit...
Category

1960s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Fabric, Foam, Mahogany

Edward Wormley for Dunbar Tête-à-Tête
By Edward Wormley
Located in Chicago, IL
Edward Wormley for Dunbar early tête-à-tête, mahogany frame with brass sabots. Upholstered in white plains textiles.
Category

1950s Vintage Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Brass

Edward Wormley Pair of Chaise Longues, 1957
By Edward Wormley
Located in San Francisco, CA
A bleached mahogany chaise lounge with white leather armrests and a newly restored cane seat and back.
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Cane, Leather, Mahogany

Edward Wormley Tete a Tete
By Edward Wormley
Located in West Palm Beach, FL
A beautiful example of the smaller version of this form. the tete a tete retains both the original fabric and finish. Manufactured by Dunbar.
Category

1950s American Vintage Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Brass

  • Edward Wormley Tete a Tete
  • Edward Wormley Tete a Tete
  • Edward Wormley Tete a Tete
  • Edward Wormley Tete a Tete
H 27.5 in. W 66 in. D 27.5 in.
Edward Wormley for Dunbar Rocking Chaise
By Edward Wormley
Located in Miami, FL
Exquisite rocking chaise by Dunbar. The back has an adjustable brass mechanism that is simple and beautiful on its own. Made of bent ashwood, brass and cane. Retains original cushion.
Category

1960s American Vintage Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Dunbar Chaise Lounge by Edward Wormley
By Edward Wormley, Dunbar Furniture
Located in Chicago, IL
Left arm chaise model 5525 designed by Edward Wormley for Dunbar. Fully restored. Newly upholstered.
Category

20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Mahogany

  • Dunbar Chaise Lounge by Edward Wormley
  • Dunbar Chaise Lounge by Edward Wormley
  • Dunbar Chaise Lounge by Edward Wormley
  • Dunbar Chaise Lounge by Edward Wormley
H 27 in. W 78 in. D 30 in.
Dunbar Chaise Longue by Edward Wormley
By Edward Wormley, Dunbar Furniture
Located in Chicago, IL
Dunbar left arm chaise by Edward Wormley, circa 1950. Espresso tone mahogany frame with cane back. New mohair upholstery. Matching daybed available.
Category

20th Century American Mid-Century Modern Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Mahogany, Mohair

  • Dunbar Chaise Longue by Edward Wormley
  • Dunbar Chaise Longue by Edward Wormley
  • Dunbar Chaise Longue by Edward Wormley
  • Dunbar Chaise Longue by Edward Wormley
H 30 in. W 74 in. D 29 in.
Edward Wormley "Listen-To-Me" Couch
By Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Located in New York, NY
Edward Wormley's sleek and sexy chaise longue is the Holy Grail for Dunbar collectors. This example came from the Florida estate of a prominent New York City decorator who was active...
Category

1940s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

Materials

Brass, Steel

  • Edward Wormley "Listen-To-Me" Couch
  • Edward Wormley "Listen-To-Me" Couch
  • Edward Wormley "Listen-To-Me" Couch
  • Edward Wormley "Listen-To-Me" Couch
H 26 in. W 26 in. D 73 in.
Dunbar Tête-a-Tête
By Edward Wormley
Located in San Francisco, CA
Edward Wormley design for Dunbar Furniture Co. Tete-a-tete. Ebonized walnut frame with brass sabots, newly upholstered in Maharam satin wool. Perfect for entertaining or creating ...
Category

1950s American Mid-Century Modern Vintage Edward Wormley Chaise Longues

  • Dunbar Tête-a-Tête
  • Dunbar Tête-a-Tête
  • Dunbar Tête-a-Tête
  • Dunbar Tête-a-Tête
H 27.5 in. W 81 in. D 27.5 in.