Duncan Phyfe at the Met

by Laura Casey Interiors on February 21, 2012

Back in December an exhibit opened at the Metropolitan Museum about cabinetmaker Duncan Phyfe, whose furniture was very trendy in the 1920’s. He emigrated from Scotland when he was only 16 years old and trained as a cabinetmaker while living in Albany, New York before relocating to New York City. He became popularized for selling his work at low prices.

A crib dated 1840-47

Sofa dated 1810-20

Arm chair dated 1830-35

According to the Met,  Phyfe’s work was in such demand that he was referred to as the “United States Rage.” His best known furniture was similar to the work of Thomas Sheraton, who created English Regency pieces.  Looking at Phyfe’s beautiful handiwork, you can see why he is considered to be one of the leading furniture makers of his time.

Frame chair dated 1791-1818

A glamorous bedstead, 1841

Meridienne dated 1837

Secretary, 1815-20

I think these pieces are beautiful, and I hope I can get up to see the exhibit before it closes.


Image & Information Credit: The Metropolitan Museum of Art




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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 pve February 21, 2012 at 8:44 am

I have plans to go with my maid of honor who restores priceless Antiques in CT.
You would love her – She is coming to visit and we will be there! I can’t wait to learn so many things from her!

2 Ann February 21, 2012 at 5:14 pm

Laura, This is so interesting. I have a sofa that was my grandmother’s. It has cane sides and a cane back. She bought it new from a furniture store in Dallas in the 1920s. My mom used to describe it as “sort of Duncan Phyfe”. It has similar lines as the one you show here, but as my mom said, it is “sort of”. Anyway, i love your post and I love my sofa!

3 Parick Cobb @ CC DeuxVie - Vintage Furniture Reborn July 2, 2012 at 9:39 am

I stumbled on to your blog and the Duncan Phyfe Sofa caught my attention. Gogeous. I also noticed that you were based here in Charlotte and thought it would be a good idea to reach out to you and introduce you to my wife, Carolyn Cobb as I think the two of you can help each other out. We are also Charlotteans and about a year ago she followed her passion for Vintage Furniture and opened up an Etsy Online Store for Vintage Furniture Recreations, “CC DeuxVie”, which has received only great reviews and actually become quite a success. Carolyn was actually recently featured in Charlotte Style Magazine. My Stylish Place. You can also check out new our website @ CC DeuxVie – “Vintage Reborn” , specializing in Vintage Furniture Recreations, Handmade Designer Accent Pillows, and Vintage Accessories. We have some unique pieces that I think you and your clients / readers will appreciate.

Let me know what you think.


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