Make Room For Adrian Pearsall

Lately I’ve been on a roll and I’ve been tearing through my New Year’s Find List. My latest incredible find not only crosses one more item off that list, it also helps rectify one of my oldest snagging regrets. What could this amazing item be?

Pearsall_CouchThis Adrian Pearsall monster couch! Oh how long I’ve searched for thee. This is identical to a sofa that I let slip through my hands years ago and I’ve been kicking myself for the better part of a decade. I shared that debacle with you back in this post. But timing is everything. I wasn’t educated or prepared the first go around—this time I was all over it.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, when you’re searching for something, cast a wide net and let people know what you like. It was my mom who found the Craigslist posting that led me to this beauty. I found the posting in my inbox around 5 pm and texted the number to inquire how much they were asking. They texted back, “$60.” I texted back, “SOLD!” But there was one caveat—the couch was over an hour away and it had to be picked up that night or it would be sold to other interested buyers in the morning. I began making frantic calls to secure a vehicle big enough to haul this nine foot behemoth and to find some temporary storage (thanks Angela!) until I could make space for it in my garage. Thank goodness for great friends. Two hours later I was on my way in a borrowed van.

FabricIt turns out the seller had been given the couch by a local doctor she worked for. She had looked it up online, but honestly she couldn’t understand why anybody would want it. But to each their own—and I now own this fabulous couch. I was amazed at the condition. The wood is nearly flawless and, with the exception of one hole in the seat cushion, the upholstery is in great shape too. While I like the upholstery and could probably learn to live with the hole, I’ll probably opt to have it reupholstered. The foam is encased in some kind of crinkling plastic sleeve that sounds like a waterproof children’s mattress and the rubber strapping beneath the seat has given way and been replaced with plywood strips and a crude wooden box placed under the seat. It is also missing the original matching throw pillows along the back which I plan to replace. But, I am hoping there is enough salvageable fabric from the sofa to recover a chair that I’ve been hunting for fabric for.




DrawerThe shape of this low sofa is SO COOL. I can’t get over it. The massive walnut apron, the dainty legs with castors, the ridiculously skinny drawers—it is all so quintessentially mid-century. In my New Year’s find list post I said I loved my current sofa, but I might change my mind for the right piece. This is it. Totally worth changing my whole living room for—a new master plan for the room is currently coming together. Stay tuned for the before and after.


As I unloaded the couch, a thought did spring to mind: how would I possibly get this in my house? My living room is on a second floor, accessible only by a staircase with a 90 degree turn. Normal sized furniture is a challenge, much less a nine foot long couch. As I contemplated ways of hoisting it through the living room window, another option presented itself. From the back, I noticed the couch is built on a welded steel frame. Fortunately the seat and wood pieces can all be removed from the frame, allowing it to be disassembled and carried upstairs in pieces. Score.

Saved by screws! The couch comes apart

Saved by screws! The couch comes apart

Although no markings are left on the sofa, it is fortunately a documented Adrian Pearsall design. Many, many pieces are incorrectly attributed to him, and in reality many are knock-offs of his designs for Craft Associates.

The original Craft Associates catalog page, via

The original Craft Associates catalog page, via

So, I honestly don’t know what’s left on my find list. But I won’t worry about it. As always, you find what you’re looking for when you aren’t looking specifically for it. The key is simply to keep looking at everything, always.

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  1. Eric hawxby
    Posted May 16, 2013 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

    Omg! That couch is like the Holy Grail of couches. So envious. $60? ?? You got Mid-century mojo working for you. Congrats!

    • Austin
      Posted May 23, 2013 at 11:39 pm | Permalink

      Right? This is a forever couch. Now stay tuned to see how excited I am about it after it costs a zillion dollars to reupholster…

      • Lizz
        Posted September 2, 2017 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

        Saw your find while I was looking up the couch. It is actually fairly easy to reupholster the couch.only 6 seams. Mine has been redone now 3 times. Though the last time I had someone else do it. My couch has lived in Pennsylvania, Hawaii, Connecticut, both Northern and Southern Virginia several times, North Carolina, and finally back to Virginia. My parents were its original owners and my dad was in the Navy.
        I also have a mid century dining room set, a coffee table, and a set of chairs one of which is a rocker and I only have the pieces as it is not put together because my mother decided to use the back as a mirror frame. I have yet to confirm the designer on those.

        Hope you still love your couch, It is not light nor fun to move.

  2. christine
    Posted May 24, 2015 at 11:24 am | Permalink

    I have one similar with the marble end tables. I got it free on craigslist. Mine is not in great condition. It had been recovered and then they let the dogs sleep on it. I am in the process of recovering it.

  3. Maya
    Posted November 9, 2015 at 10:18 am | Permalink

    I am years late to this party, but I am glad to have found this post! My fiancé and I got this model for $600, but after refinishing the wood and getting it reupholstered, it’s going to be closer to $2000. I’m just happy to have a name for it since we only found 2 picture online for it. Do you have a shot of this one redone?

    • Austin
      Posted December 1, 2015 at 11:20 am | Permalink

      Hi Maya. I I’m years late to respond to your comment 🙂 I actually had mine reupholstered earlier this year, but I haven’t put it back together yet, I still need to re-oil the wood and get it back into fighting shape. But I’ll have pictures once I do! We’d love to see pictures of yours though. Feel free to send them along.

      • Maya
        Posted December 1, 2015 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

        Happy to share photos. After a lot of research, we purchased some Knoll fabric since it turned out to be reasonably priced. We also had cushions made since it only came with some big throw pillows. Looking forward to seeing how yours turned out 🙂

        • Angela
          Posted December 1, 2015 at 11:02 pm | Permalink

          Your couch looks fantastic! And I just checked out your blog; very cool. Can’t wait to read more especially since you said you are starting from scratch? We went to Switzerland awhile back and it is amazing! Cheers 🙂

  4. Lindi Lumens
    Posted August 22, 2016 at 1:41 pm | Permalink

    I grew up with this exact couch, which my Mom custom-ordered in 1963. This same fabric, but she had the wood painted a satin black … she was into what was at that time called “Chinese Modern” so everything was in black, ivory and Chinese red.

    She had a coffee table in front that was a 6′ long slab of black marble sitting on black and brass legs that formed an elongated z, so that the slab just appeared to be floating.

    When my 6′ tall Dad sat on the couch, his knees were higher than his lap!

  5. Joseph
    Posted February 25, 2018 at 6:05 pm | Permalink

    Nice sofa! I just picked one up off of Craigslist, too. Was wondering if you could post some pics of the knobs on the drawers? I am curious if mine are the same or if they were changed over the years. Thanks.

    • Elizabeth Bolden
      Posted February 25, 2018 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

      I would post pictures of the knobs but I can’t figure out how. But I would say my knobs are like the one above kind of ball like at the end. Remides me of a chess pawn or a water tower on their side.

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