Apr 27, 2012

milo baughman

have you heard of milo baughman?

i sure hope so.

if not, here is a brief introduction, taken from the thayer coggins website:

"Milo Baughman pioneer in modern design and one of the leading modern furniture designers of the second half of the 20th century. Baughman was brought east from his native California by Thayer Coggin in the 1950s to design the first lines for his collection of related upholstered groups. Baughman's uniquely American designs were forward-thinking and distinctive, yet unpretentious. The relaxed and timeless quality of his furniture created a ready and consistent response and his highly influential work continues to be collected and reinvented and revived by designers around the world. Paramount to Baughman's design philosophy was that good design is enduring design. Baughman's characteristic restraint does not permit the look of mere novelty to enter in. Rather, he achieved a look that is uncompromisingly modern, but which never violates the timeless standards of classic good taste."

(lounge chair design by milo baughman-elle decor)
i first learned about milo baughman when i was in college.
a professor of mine announced to my interior design class that milo baughman (pronounced my-low boff-man) was going to be teaching a furniture design class the following semester, and encouraged us to take it.

 i signed up immediately, even though the only information i know about him was very limited....this was before the internet exploded (1995. yeah. that makes me feel really, really old, by the way)

not only did i take the "intro to furniture design" class with milo baughman, but i also took the "advanced furniture design" class and did an internship with milo for a few months, assisting him in a few local projects he was working on. he was a kind, and deeply thoughtful and intelligent man with a quick wit and a deep love and knowledge of interior design and modern furniture design.

(a console table design by milo baughman-elle decor)

one of the things he said to our class that has resonated with me for the last 17 years is this: 
(and i am paraphrasing a bit...)
"everyone thinks they have good taste. but this cannot be. inevitably, some of the people who think 
they have good taste are wrong"
whenever he said it, he would softly chuckle. 
(and that would make the entire class chuckle!)

milo's work has become a lot more popular in the last few years.
you can do a quick search on ebay, and come up with dozen of items.

(i would LOVE to own this baby!)

crate and barrel is now carrying several pieces that he designed:

it was a great privilege for me to get to know such a wonderful man. because of the internship i did with him, i spent more time with him than the other students, and he was always an inspiration to be around.

you can read more about him here.
you can shop on ebay for his furniture here.
see his collections for thayer coggins here.
to shop his furniture at DWR click here.

happy friday!


  1. Wow Autumn, I am so jealous! What an amazing opportunity you had working with Milo. I actually have a Milo Baughman chair in my living room. The upholstery is in pretty bad shape but it still has the label with his name on it so I'm scared to reupholster. I might just slipcover it instead. Anyway, thanks for sharing I never would have thought about him still being around in 1995 (he you aren't old...I was in college then too!)

    1. ooo! lucky you! i would love to own a piece by him one day. i always haunt ebay, dreaming of the day when i can pull the trigger. and hey, as to getting older, i guess we are all WISER too, right?? oh, and on a scary side note, as i wrote "WISER", the auto spell check feature tried to change it to "WIDER" three times....gheesh, spell check, back off! i don't' want to have to CUT you!!

  2. How fantastic that you you got to work with him! That's amazing. Such beautiful work. Sadly, I was in college then like the above poster. I guess you know who the demographic you're writing for is now. :)

  3. girl, SHUT UP!!! that is a great story. you are incredibly lucky to have had an opportunity to not only learn form MB but to work so closely with him also! i'm sure you've probably searched your personal archives to see if you still had ANYTHING from those days...like a note that read, "Dearest Autumn, thank you for the wonderful ideas you shared in yesterday's client consultation. I never would've though of doing it that way, but your innovative designs definitely saved my arse. I look forward to a wonderful partnership! MB" :) Very Cool, Autumn.

    1. HHAA!!! ha! yes, you KNOW i was totally his muse! i am sure he was like "oh, now that i know AUTUMN, i have a feeling that my best work is yet to come!!" ha! ha!
      i wish...
      and i really should look though my archives. i am SURE there is a note JUST like the one above!!
      by the way, you comment was so funny that i snorted like a walrus! (a really skinny, cute walrus...)

  4. Wow, what an amazing opportunity! Dayka's comment made me chuckle too!

  5. Modern Furniture How fantastic that you you got to work with him! That's amazing. Such beautiful work. Sadly, I was in college then like the above poster.

  6. Great Story. Are there any websites that show all his designs. We have several pieces we beleive are MB, but not sure how to really know.

  7. i m from athens-greece....i m an interior designer(sory for my english).....just now i discovered MB......he is my DESIGN-GOD !!!!!! JUST RESPECT TO THE MAN!!!!!! I M IN LOVE WITH ALL THOSE FURNITURE....!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! BRAVO MILO!!!!! maximos spartan

  8. I just bought a milo baugman lounge chair in fantastic shape. Loved the look of the chair & it is so comfy. Now I wonder if I should sit in it or not.

  9. Hi Autumn! How wonderful it must have been to work so closely with him. His designs make me smile. :) Somehow I'm just now finding this post, perhaps because I have a dresser that I think might have been designed by him. The dresser is made by Lane Furniture, but I wasn't aware that he worked for them? Since you studied his work in school and with him personally, I thought you might know the answer. Thanks! mj