Ed Wormley for Dunbar Sofa

Buyer Protection Guaranteed

About

This handsome sofa, designed for Dunbar by Ed Wormley, has been reupholstered in a light black/charcoal Maharam fabric with fine attention to detail. Zippered cushions remove to reveal a button-tufted back.

Model 5138, circa 1950s. Poly/cotton fabric. Mahogany legs with stretchers rest on steel swivel feet.

Original Dunbar plate was not retained during reupholstering.

PLEASE NOTE: Pickup for this sofa is in Denver, CO.

Details

  • Condition
    Good
  • Wear
    Wear consistent with age and use
  • Dimensions
    28.5 in. H x 88 in. W x 32.5 in. D
    72 cm H x 224 cm W x 83 cm D
  • Seller Location
    Portland, OR
  • Number of Items
    1
  • Reference Number
    LU79069074983

About Edward Wormley (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 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 these pages demonstrate, Edward Wormley conceived of a subdued sort of modernism, designing furniture that fits into any decorating scheme and does not shout for attention.

About the Seller

1stdibs seller since 2004

Typical response time: 2 hours

Located in Portland, OR

Associations:
  • 20th Century Specialists

More from this Seller

Stunning Mid-Century Dunbar Sofa by Edward Wormley in New Fabric
Stunning Mid-Century Dunbar Sofa by Edward Wormley...
Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Stunning Mid-Century sofa designed by Edward Wormley for Dunbar beautifully reupholstered in micro-velvet fabric.   
Magnificent Edward Wormley for Dunbar Gaming or Breakfast Set
Magnificent Edward Wormley for Dunbar Gaming or Br...
Dunbar Furniture, Edward Wormley
Mahogany
This set features two horseshoe dining chairs and matching breakfast from Wormley's Janus Group line for Dunbar. The chairs and table are mahogany and tapiwa wood. Table and chairs both...
Borge Mogensen Sofa Model 2213 for Fredericia of Denmark in Brown Leather
Borge Mogensen Sofa Model 2213 for Fredericia of D...
Børge Mogensen, Fredericia Stolefabrik
Leather
Borge Mogensen sofa model 2213 for Fredericia of Denmark in brown leather. A super comfortable and elegantly designed Danish classic. This icon of Danish master designer features rosewo...
Dramatic Floating Gold Velvet Mid-Century Sofa
Dramatic Floating Gold Velvet Mid-Century Sofa
Velvet, Chrome
Dramatic floating Mid-Century sofa in original gold velvet upholstery on minimal gold metal legs. Measures: 22.5 inches high at mid-arm.
Cloud's Rest Sofa by 20th Century Studios
Cloud's Rest Sofa by 20th Century Studios
Unknown
Fabric
"Cloud's Rest" says it all! A beautiful 20th Century Interiors original reproduction sofa from a classic Mid-Century design, floating on aluminum or brass legs. Choose our velour fabri...
Pair of Maison Jansen Loveseats in Distressed Buffalo Leather
Pair of Maison Jansen Loveseats in Distressed Buff...
Sven Ellekaer
Handsome pair of Maison Jansen love seats in distressed leather. Featuring chrome legs and leveling feet. These chairs are solidly made and comfortable to boot We have the matching clu...
Hans Olsen Loveseat in Distressed Leather with a Curved Surround Back
Hans Olsen Loveseat in Distressed Leather with a C...
Hans Olsen
Leather
Hans Olsen loveseat in distressed leather with handsome baseball stitching. The loveseat is a surround back.
Elegant Set of 6 Dining Chair by John Van Koert's Profile Line for Drexel
Elegant Set of 6 Dining Chair by John Van Koert's ...
John Van Koert, Drexel Profile
Walnut
This set of six dining chairs which include two armchairs and four sides have been black lacquered and new foam and upholstery ready muslin. Arm height is 26". Side chair measures: ...
Elegant PD 30 Chair by Ib Kofod- Larsen for Povl Dinesen Reclining Club Chair
Elegant PD 30 Chair by Ib Kofod- Larsen for Povl D...
Ib Kofod-Larsen, Povl Dinesen
Leather, Rosewood
A wonderful example of Kofod-Larsen work for Povl Dinesen, circa 1960. The chair has the rare tilting handle for eight comfortable reclining positions. The leather is original and distr...
Pair of Slipper Chairs in the Manner of Milo Baughman for Thayer Coggin
Pair of Slipper Chairs in the Manner of Milo Baugh...
Milo Baughman, Thayer Coggin
Naugahyde, Walnut
A pair of Mid-Century slipper chairs in the manner of Milo Baughman, a la his Model 176 chair produced by Thayer Coggin in the late 1950s. In original ivory vinyl upholstery with wal...
Danish ML 91 Lounge Chair by Illum Wikkelsø for Mikael Larsen
Danish ML 91 Lounge Chair by Illum Wikkelsø for Mi...
A. Mikael Laursen, Illum Wikkelsø
Fabric, Teak
This ML 91 model lounge chair was designed by Illum Wikkelsø and manufactured by Mikael Laursen in Denmark in the 1960s. Teak frame. Reupholstered in 2017 in grey fabric. Overall go...
Eero Saarinen Tulip Stool for Knoll
Eero Saarinen Tulip Stool for Knoll
Knoll, Eero Saarinen
Metal, Upholstery
A classic and early tulip stool designed by Eero Saarinen for Knoll. Newly reupholstered in deep aqua vinyl on an enameled cast iron base. (Knoll label lost during reupholstering).