Vintage Drexel Declaration furniture – Catherine sends us a gorgeous brochure

Following the “original” Drexel post (where we also met Troy of Troyland), the wonderful Catherine kindly scanned some precious vintage Drexel advertising to share with other readers. She says:

Here is one of my Drexel Declaration ads that was in the drawer of the dresser that I bought from my Great Grandmother. She had marked the ones that were “mine” and even wrote the price next to our Catkin bed – $79!!! I just love the living/dining room scene!! Wish I could find that living room set. Anyway, hope you enjoy! – Catherine

Catherine, did you say “Catkin”? That bed was surely destined for you! And from your Great Grandmother, no less! Thank you so much, this Drexel furniture is AWESOME! More posts on it to come – the original post inspired some other content, including a reader purchase!

Rob’s vintage Drexel Declaration bedroom set:

drexel-declaration-bedroom drexel-declaration-bedroom-set drexel-declaration-dresser drexel-declaration-dresser-2

Above: Added March 2014 — Reader Rob sent us these four photos of his vintage Drexel Declaration bedroom set. Thanks, Rob! He wrote:

Hello Pam,
Thanks so much for writing back! I love your site, especially the Time Capsule house articles. I am attaching the photos of the Drexel set here- I got a 5-pc bedroom set for a song, worst part was driving to Queens to pick up and then hauling them up to my fourth floor walk-up. I found them through Apartment Therapy Classifieds (run by Krrb), more proof that affordable doesn’t have to mean Ikea!
Best regards,


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  1. troysf says

    Thanks for sharing! The photos don’t do justice to the beauty of the walnut — rich, warm, with gorgeous grain. Nice to see the original upholstery on the dining chairs (my set has been recently reupholstered in oh-so-dull beige). Looking forward to more!

  2. Femme1 says

    OK, Pam, I have to admit. Sometimes when you’ve recommended adding a bit of a colonial touch to modern, I’ve had an instantaneous gut reaction. Something like “Arrrgghghghg, no!” This reaction I attribute to growing up in an Early American/Colonial-saturated home. You know…the butter-churn-as-magazine-rack decor that we’ve poked fun at before.

    But these Drexel ads made me pause and go, “Hey, now I see her point.” Their take on Colonial chairs is really refreshing. In the upper photo, the two “catkin?” chairs on either side of the modern hutch fit in perfectly. And I love those two barrel-type chairs at the little round table in the bottom picture, especially juxtaposed with the very Danish-modern upholstered cantilevered couch and chair. The use of classic walnut is a nice touch, but I think the light touch of Colonial design is what makes this furniture palatable to me. It’s Early American light and airy, not the heavy stuff that I grew up with. The pewter jug lamp actually works with the classic statue on the coffee table. And the framed geese painting is an interesting modern take on a very “colonial” bird.

    I like it!! I actually like it! I can’t wait for my Drexel dining table and chairs to arrive (looks like sometime next week).

    • DougM says

      hmmm I know what you mean about the kitcsh factor around Coca-colonial. That being said, while I certainly appreciate good mid-century design I can’t help seeing it wreathed in cigarette smoke and almost smell it too!

  3. Femme1 says

    If anyone has a brochure or is aware of a Web site about Drexel’s Profile line, please post it here. I recently received my Profile dining table and chairs, and would love to find more pieces. I’ll send Pam some photos soon!

  4. bleu_cheese says

    Oh my gosh, I’m so glad I found your blog! I was trying to figure out what my dining table and chairs are, the table stamp underneath says 851-310-36 TABLE BY DREXEL. Well, I didn’t get any hits on google with that search, but somehow found your site and, voila! this is my dining set. I love it but being somewhat of a vintage modern noob, I am not sure what kind of wood it is or how to care for it. Anyone know?

  5. nelson says

    I have inherited a large matching set of this furniture and was looking for a buyer or an appraiser. I have the chinacabinet, king bed, two dressers, dining table, and 6 chairs. All in excellent shape. It just doesn’t go with the 1920’s farm house.

  6. Christine says

    I have a China Cabinet #851-420-4, the glass doors are missing and not sure about lighting it mentions in the brochure. Any idea how much it’s worth. Am considering selling at my father’s estate sale. Otherwise it’s in great condition.


  7. Anne Pearson says

    I have a Drexel Profile dining room table ( with leaves and table pads) and 4 chairs. Also a double headboard. I have the original brochure from 1956. The wood is walnut. It is very well made furniture.

  8. Jill Long says

    I have a buffet and table and chairs stamped Drexel, tempo. Do you know what wood it is. I know that it is a veneer and would love to refinish it. What is the best way to refinish it? I would like to stain it too, what products are the best

    • pam kueber says

      Hi Jill. I approved your comment – but only to clarify for you (and other new readers) that this site focuses on aesthetics, vintage inspiration and the social-domestic history that led to our houses — but, it’s not a DIY site. On occasion we do post things about basic cleaning and polishing…but for anything more extensive than that I’ll point you to other sites or to professionals. I am guessing there are quite a few out there that can help you with furniture refinishing. Good luck!

  9. Bev Sayre says

    I have a night table with the inscription:
    K26-2 N,S. Profile by Drexel
    Can you tell me when it was manufactured

    • pam kueber says

      Hi Bev, this is not my area of expertise. I suggest you call Drexel customer service…good luck.

  10. says

    I have the Declaration dining set (or most of it) that Inherited from my mother. China cabinet, buffet, side table, dining table and 8 chairs. My sister has some of the other pieces; round coffee table and bench. Any ideas of what it’s worth????

  11. Rita C. Frischer says

    This is a great site I found while trying to track down the collection name of our mid-century dining room china cabinet…and there it is in the top picture: Declaration. We love it but the push-to-release hook latch on one of the cabinet doors is broken and we can’t get the door open once it’s closed. No latch like this to be found in hardware stores, apparently, and I’m hoping someone can advise me of a source..

  12. paul says

    I’m trying to figure out what chairs i have. They are drxel queen ann style i guess (wing bac k / barrel back. wood frame w/ material inserts. I can not find any pic’s at all even close. The seat is about 12 in. off the ground ( yes low!!!). They are from as far back as i can rember in my grandmother’s home the 60’s.
    Ps behind the back cushin is 5 curved and carved supporting slats. any insite would be great!!!


  13. JB says

    Does anyone know if Drexel Declaration pieces are solid walnut wood or did the company also use veneers in this line? Thanks.

  14. Joyce Bihary says

    I just purchased a second hand table made by Drexel. It is stamped Declaration by Drexel 851-340 Rd Ext. 7 ft. table. There was no leaf that came with it. I am wondering what kind of wood it is and if you could give any leads as to how or the possibility of acquiring a leaf for the table. There is also stamped SD-14 on the underside. I love the clean lines and look of the wood. Would appreciate any information you could give to me on this line.
    Thanks, JB

    • pam kueber says

      Sorry, Joyce, I don’t know… you might try contacting Drexel directly. The Declaration line is one of my favorites!

      • Joyce Bihary says

        Thanks for your reply. This is a first for me to blog or whatever it is called that we are doing. I appreciate your quick response.

  15. Terri D. says

    I have a question if anyone knows. I have two Declaration end tables in great condition. 881-311-3 these pieces have a wicker piece underneath. Very pretty.
    I want to sell them but don’t know what they are worth, any ideas?
    Thank you

  16. Ina says

    Anyone know the original material and color the caned back Declaration “party chairs” ? I just picked up five!

    Brochure shows red seats – just saw a set purporting to be original with white leather or vinyl seats. thank you for this great super useful site !

  17. Sue Johnson says

    I just bought an older piece of furniture and saw that it was a Drexel. I was wondering how to get it appraised. It’s numbered and resembles a 1940’s credenza with beautiful curves and brass round handles.

    • Judy says

      Hello Sue.
      Do you need an appraisal for the Drexel piece you recently purchased to obtain personal property insurance policy coverage or to add additional coverage to an existing policy? Or, do you need the appraisal to establish the marketable or re-sale value of the Drexel piece for personal asset value or record management? Are you trying to develop a financial or estate planning strategy for the division of your assets to specified beneficiaries? Whether a certified appraisal of the Drexel piece you recently purchased is required, desired or simply a more official declaration of its asset value, an appraisal prepared by a renown, highly qualified, experienced, certified expert can be somewhat costly and more expensive to obtain than most individuals initially anticipate.

      In my experience, large insurance companies like State Farm, almost always require a certified appraisal prepared by a reputable, highly trained, experienced expert certified by a particular entity to establish and verify ownership of the item and determine the replacement value of the property based on specific criteria. Prior to writing and issuing a personal property policy for a piece of jewelry I received as a gift, State Farm initially requested an informal document from the jewelry store where the piece had been purchased to determine the replacement value of the jewelry. Nine days later, State Farm notified me that the appraisal from the jeweler would not suffice and it required an official document prepared by a GIA certified jewelry appraiser. In Houston and surrounding areas, only one GIA certified appraiser existed! Admittedly, I was irritated because State Farm changed its rules and requirements several times. I felt inconvenienced and my bank account balance was less $300. I had been required to pay $300. for the certified GIA appraisal I needed to comply with State Farm policy requirements and to obtain coverage. Admittedly, I quickly changed my perception of the appraisal process and the entire experience after I discovered the GIA certified appraiser valued the piece at nearly double the value written on the initial jewelry store appraisal! Without the certified GIA appraisal, the replacement value of the piece appraised on the first document would have cut my income in half.

      My advice to you is to first identify the reason you need an appraisal. If the Drexel piece is a rare piece produced as a limited edition piece and is one of a limited number produced by Drexel, search for vintage furniture collectors that limit their vintage furniture collection to Drexel or the specific era pieces similar to the style and period your piece had been produced. Identify the most prominent designers of that period and establish the demand for pieces similar or the same as your Drexel piece. If you insured your piece, examine your policy and coverage. I only recently learned that coverage provided through standard homeowner insurance policies is not sufficient for a homeowner that is seeking replacement cost coverage for a large inventory of high value items . Most standard homeowner policies divide property into specific categories and limit the amount of coverage (for items like jewelry, art, collectibles and antiques) paid for claims classified within a specific category. For years, I mistakenly believed my total policy coverage amount was the same despite whether the loss had been caused by fire or theft. I also mistakenly believed all of my belongings were covered at replacement cost up to the limits established by my policy and the type of coverage (For example, the claim payout is often higher and more comprehensive for losses caused by fire. Theft claim payout limits are more restrictive and losses due to theft are much less recoverable.)
      Like you, I’m unsure of the multitude of reference resources that are readily available to research the values of items I own or items I want to purchase or sell. It feels like the older I get, the less I know and the less resourceful I’ve become! Reminder: I am not a vintage expert and I am not formally trained to competently offer others advice. The views expressed in this comment are based on my personal experience and personal opinion. Search the Internet for reliable vintage information and you’ll discover a large number of experts that willingly offer free advice or free suggestions. They only require an individual ask them for help! If you want to determine whether you paid more or less than what others paid for the same piece or a similar piece purchased at the same time, sites like “The Find,” and similar sites often provide comparative pricing search engines. Good luck!

  18. Joni says

    I saw a Drexel dresser in a second hand shop which I’m interested in buying. I did some research and think it was from a series called Paragon. I’d appreciate it if anyone could share more about this style which looks like Danish modern.

  19. David Miranda says

    These are my parents’ living room, bedroom and dining room pieces! Wow! The style in the dining room chairs doesn’t come across in the pictures.

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