Nelson Marshmallow Sofa by Herman Miller
designed by George Nelson
At A Glance:
The playful Nelson Marshmallow Sofa is a landmark of modern design that's still turning heads and making people smile. The cushions can be all the same color or in multiple colors for the right look in a private office, lobby, lounge, living room, or den. It's a one-of-a-kind whimsical design with 18 round, upholstered cushions that float on the frame. The cushions are also detachable for easy cleaning and interchanged to equalize wear or create a new look.
What's To Like:
The Marshmallow Sofa is a combination of art and whimsy, with such a unique form that it's unmistakable. In Herman Miller's crowd of Mid-Century classics, this sofa stands out. And why shouldn't it? With its origin in George Nelson's desire to use foam scraps that were accumulating, and its current day collection of fine leathers and soft textile upholstery, this is one sofa that you'll be proud to own. It's truly a piece of decor history.
What's Not to Like:
Well, let's start with the price, and proceed to the multiple-cushion form. This isn't (and isn't trying to be) the ultimate comfy couch. It's a piece of sculpture with roots in the furniture world. In that respect, there isn't much to dislike. The Marshmallow Sofa's a classic.
The Bottom Line:
The Marshmallow Sofa is completely true to George Nelson's original design and detailing. With the unique multi-cushion design and steel frame, he accomplished his goal of reducing waste through re-use, and created a memorable modern sofa.
- Overall: 31" h x 52" w x 29" d
- Seat Height: 16"
- Brushed-finish tubular steel frame with black satin-finish legs
- 18 circular cushions with polyester fabric or leather upholstery
- Glides for hard floor or carpet
- Stock Leather
Chromium free and from Austria this stock Herman Miller leather is a winner for most. With a matte, soft feel this is the most popular leather used on Herman Miller upholstered items.
- Dream Cow Leather
With a gentle calfskin grain (it's not calfskin though, its European full grain aniline dyed cowhide), this leather is soft and comes in many great colors to accent your decor. This is a leather of great versatility, perfect when Royal Hide is out of budget, but where the look is wanted.
- Metallic Dream Cow Leather
A gentle calfskin grain (again, not calfskin but European full grain aniline dyed cowhide), infused with metals and soft shine, on cowhide for huge versatility. Updated, offbeat, moody colors.
The Herman Miller Nelson Marshmallow Sofa is also known by the following manufacturer Item Number: 5670.
When the Marshmallow sofa was introduced in 1956, the Herman Miller catalog described it as "The first of a series of pieces embodying a new concept in soft seating. We feel that it has possible use not only in the home, but in contract use for lobbies in public buildings where the very fact that it is unusual will be a plus."
The catalog also said, "Despite its astonishing appearance, this piece is very comfortable."
Designed by Irving Harper and George Nelson, the sofa was reintroduced by Herman Miller after a 34-year hiatus in 1999.
The Marshmallow Sofa is part of two lists:
Top 10: Furniture that Would Confuse Your Grandmother
Top 10: Furniture that Could Appear in A Clockwork Orange.
About the Designer
When writing about the course of his remarkable 50-year career, George Nelson described a series of creative "zaps"--moments of out-of-the-blue inspiration "when the solitary individual finds he is connected with a reality he never dreamed of." It was these zaps that would lead to the creation of some of the most original furniture designs of the 20th century- including the Swag Leg Chair and the Marshmallow Sofa.
An early zap came in the 1930s, when he was an architectural student in Rome. Before returning home, an idea struck him: He would travel Europe and interview leading modern architects, hoping to get the articles published in the U.S. He succeeded, and in the process introduced the U.S. design community to the European avant-garde. This set in motion a sequence of what he called "lucky" career breaks that were really the inevitable outcomes of his brilliance as a designer, teacher, and author.
About the Manufacturer
Herman Miller Authorized Retailer
Herman Miller is an industry leader in the integration of cutting edge technology to furniture and other household items to make everyday life more comfortable, convenient, and stylish. Herman Miller stands out at the forefront of such fields as ergonomic technologies, environmentally friendly manufacturing processes, and customizable furniture items.
In addition to producing some of the most outstanding office furniture in the world, Herman Miller has also taken on the responsibility of manufacturing some of the most celebrated furniture designs by some of the world's most famous designs. These "modern classics" include works by Charles and Ray Eames, George Nelson, and Isamu Noguchi. Herman Miller celebrates these famous mid-century designers' works through its extraordinarily precise manufacturing techniques and industry-leading green production processes.
Herman Miller is a global company with operations, sales offices, dealers, and licensees in more than 40 countries in North America, Asia/Pacific, Europe, Middle East, Africa, and Latin America, serving customers virtually anywhere in the world. Herman Miller is headquartered in Zeeland, Michigan, while manufacturing facilities are located in the U.S., China, Italy, and the United Kingdom.
Materials & Measurements
Brushed-finish tubular steel frame, satin-finish legs. 18 circular cushions, polyester or leather fabric upholstery.Dimensions:
Overall: 31" h x 52" w x 29" d
Seat height: 16"Upholstery Materials:
A 100 percent recycled polyester, Crepe is durable, easy to clean and comfortably soft. A more affordable alternative to leather, Crepe has a 60,000 double rub polyester.
Chromium free and in stock at Herman Miller, standard leather is a winner for most. Direct from Austria with a matte, soft feel, this is the most popular leather used on Herman Miller upholstered items. It has a faint embossed grain pattern and little shine.
Dream Cow Leather
A gentle European full grain aniline-dyed cowhide with a calfskin feel, this leather is soft and comes in many great colors to accent your decor. Dream cow is very popular, it has a natural grain and medium shine and is similar to Royal Hide without the price.
Metallic Dream Cow Leather
Metallic is right. This leather is infused with metals and soft shine, on cowhide for huge versatility. Features offbeat, moody colors with a shimmer to them.