George Hepplewhite was reportedly a man who designed distinct, elegant pieces of furniture in the 1800’s.
The most notable designs created by Hepplewhite were his swooping, beautiful shield backed chairs. Immediately recognisable with their thin curves and shield like back motifs. Hepplewhite is regarded as one of the big three designers of his time amongst others such as Thomas Chippendale and Thomas Sheraton.
(Featured above: Examples of Hepplewhite’s illustrations and designs)
However the mystery surrounding the brilliant designer is almost as interesting as the designs themselves! There are arguments between experts on where George Hepplewhite was born (some say Durham in England other’s Lancaster) he also reportedly worked as an apprentice in Lancaster and would go on to marry a woman named Alice who became Alice Hepplewhite.
After this man’s death however Alice Hepplewhite inherited his estate and went on to create the The Cabinet Maker And Upholsterers Guide. It was a business book for the trade and many illustration plates were engraved A Hepplewhite.
Some sceptics believe that Alice Hepplewhite may have been using George Hepplewhite’s name as a pen name in order to get her work published and that this woman may be responsible in part for the designs themselves!
(Featured Above: A modern Hepplewhite style mirror)
Hepplewhite also designed the shield mirror, an iconic mirror in the shape of a shield which would go on to inspire many designs in it’s images.
Whoever designed these works clearly had an impressive sense of style. Hepplewhite’s chairs were sophisticated and graceful. Swooping and glamorous in an era where most pieces were quite clunky and heavy looking.