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Edward Wormley Elegant Sofa Day Bed with Walnut Legs, 1953
- DimensionsHeight: 28 in. (71.12 cm)Width: 85 in. (215.9 cm)Depth: 32 in. (81.28 cm)Seat Height: 17 in. (43.18 cm)
- StyleMid-Century Modern (Of the Period)
- Materials and Techniques
- Place of Origin
- Date of Manufacture1953
- ConditionThe fabric is dirty and it needs to be reupholstered. We are including reupholstering in the price COM.
- Seller LocationNew York, NY
- Reference NumberSeller: sofa1041stDibs: LU783812387443
Shipping & Returns
- ShippingShips From: New York, NY
- Return Policy
This item cannot be returned.
About the Designer
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 — chairs, sofas, tables and more — 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 vintage 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.
- Edward Wormley Beautiful Pedestal Cabinet in Olive Burl, 1963By Edward Wormley, Dunbar FurnitureLocated in New York, NYPedestal model 6302A in natural olive burl with hinged door and interior cabinet by Edward Wormley for Dunbar, American 1963. Comes with original D key. Original paper label on botto...Category
Vintage 1960s American Mid-Century Modern PedestalsMaterials
- Elegant End Table in Brass with Bamboo DesignLocated in New York, NYElegant end table in brass with bamboo design and glass top, American 1950'sCategory
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- Cesare Lacca Elegant Rolling Cart with Glass Top, 1970sBy Cesare LaccaLocated in New York, NYRolling serving cart in lacquered mahogany with glass by Cesare Lacca (Italy) for Cassina, American, 1970s. This cart is very stylish and beautifully made.Category
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- Pair of Angular Leg Coffee Tables with Travertine Tops, 1950sLocated in New York, NYPair of angular leg coffee tables, dark mahogany bases with travertine tops, American, 1950s.Category
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- Elegant Demilune Shaped Console with Gilt Glass Top, 1950sLocated in New York, NYElegant demilune shaped console table in mahogany with brass fittings and gold leaf glass top, Italy, 1950s. The gold leaf is applied to the underside of the glass. This table has a ...Category
Vintage 1950s Italian Modern Console TablesMaterials
Brass, Gold Leaf
- Pair of Elegant Slipper Chairs, 1940sLocated in New York, NYPair of elegant slipper chairs with dark walnut legs, American, 1940s. Refinished and newly upholstered by Lobel Modern.Category
Vintage 1940s American Mid-Century Modern Slipper ChairsMaterials
Upholstery, Foam, Walnut$7,500 / set
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