Drexel Declaration

Drexel Declaration was designed by Stewart MacDougall and Kipp Stewart.

I was recently so fortunate to connect with Stewart MacDougall — principal designer of this furniture line. I need to do a complete write up — and what a great story. Mr. MacDougall told me that Kipp Stewart was generally responsible for designing the upholstery. Stewart MacDougall’s interest lay in the design of the furniture. MacDougall put incredible thought and craftsmanship into designing this line of furniture, and it really hit the mark in terms of its consumer appeal. Watch for an update soon!

Here is a short biography of Kipp Stewart (drats, link now gone). He is also a painter, and the Ventana Gallery in Big Sur, California (link also gone…) carries works like “Three Lemons” to the left. There also is a series of three, less expensive art prints available at various e-stores; find them easily via google. An article in the Sept. 200 issue of Interior Design said: “Inspired by furniture from early Greek to Art Nouveau, from 18th-century European to Art Deco, Stewart’s main aim is ‘to create forms that are not fashionable so much as timeless.'” My online research indicates that Stewart is still a very active designer today, working mostly on outdoor furniture for such companies as Summit Furniture.  Also see, for example, this outdoor bench from Smith & Hawken.  He is a founder of the Big Sur Land Trust, and with Jeff Norman, he is the author of Big Sur Observed.

He’s also an architect, here’s a house that he designed in 1984. Here’s another one, which was owned by Philip Johnson and David Whitney. Stewart also designed the Ventana Inn & Spa in Big Sur. His son Bradford Stewart is a renowned LA-area artist.

To view slide show, click on the first image, it will open larger on your screen, click anywhere on the photo to move forward, use the arrows on the left to move back; you may start or stop at any image.

  1. Hope says:

    I recently purchased a Drexel Declaration maple drop-leaf dining table with original castors (851-311-3 3/64). I had no idea it was a prized piece. I just liked the table and was planning on chalk painting it and embellishing it with floral designs. Now that I know it is an American mid-century vintage piece, I have changed my plans to “craftify” it. I’d love to see this fall into the hands of someone who will treasure it in it’s original form.

    1. Ann says:

      Hope: Thank you so much for recognizing it’s value in it’s original condition!! Too many of these gorgeous pieces get painted over and it breaks our mid-century loving hearts! I’m sure if you listed it locally and stated that it was Drexel Declaration, you might be surprised how many people would be interested.

  2. Tom says:

    Hi Pam,

    Thank you for the Drexel Declaration brochure scans! In the section for “Declaration Upholstery” there is a listing for a Lounge Chair (995-729) and an Ottoman (995-709). This chair and ottoman are seemingly a unique piece for Drexel, and aside from one listing on 1stDibs, I find no mention of them.

    Was this manufactured by Plycraft, and then upholstered by Drexel?

    Curious if any owners out there have details.

    The aforementioned 1stdibs ended listing:

    1. Pam Kueber says:

      Hi Tom,

      I don’t know the answer to this. I’m not an expert on furniture lines, just am able to show old brochures from time to time. Interesting question!

  3. Becky says:

    I just purchased a Drexel Declaration Drop leaf table (42×62). It did not come with an extra leaf. Does anyone know where I might be able to find one? I have done an internet search without any luck. Have also asked a couple people with tables for sale if they would sell the leaf separately. I really would like to have an original, not a DIY.

  4. Jenny says:

    I have a rocking chair from this line. I don’t see it in the brochure, but it is definitely from the same line and stamped. Has anyone seen one or have any other information about it. Just curious. Thanks!

  5. Mitzi Addabbo says:

    Due to your Drexel Declaration booklet from the 60’s, I found our dining room set which is still loved and used.
    Our table is 851-330, with the 22” leaves and 2 851-712 armchairs and 4 851-713 side chairs. I was thrilled to find this site!
    I believe we spent about $550 back in 1967. I am currently searching for at least ONE armchair to replace one that’s been broken one too many times.
    Any suggestions would be appreciated.

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