Knoll and Herman Miller

Posted on Mar 18, 2015 in Uncategorized | 4 Comments
Knoll and Herman Miller

Knoll Inc

Knoll Inc is an iconic American design house and manufacturer of furnishings for the workplace and the home. Knoll is considered of the world’s leading manufacturers of fine leathers and textiles. They are known for their unique modern designs for home and for the office.

Understanding the demanding needs of an office, Knoll Inc decided to create a revolution in the office furniture design world. The master piece workings of Knoll Inc is kept in the Museum of Modern Art in New York. The company is known for its innovation, expertise and novelty in creating a dashing and sleek workplace.  That being said, the world’s most stylish and expensive modern homes are decked with Knoll works.


Herman Miller

Herman Miller Inc is also a leading name in the manufacture of office and modern home furniture as well.  Just like Knoll, Herman Miller as earned an esteemed position in the furniture design world.

Herman Miller began their journey in manufacturing residential furniture but as time moved on the company stepped in the production of office furniture and set a hallmark with its distinctiveness and modern style.

Even in the early days, when such practices were not as common, Herman Miller is famous for having given an especially important emphasis to their employees. Through a participative management arrangement, the ideas of the employees were considered in setting goals, cost cut down, and advancing techniques.  This allowed Herman Miller to be innovative and creative in ways that led to their designs standing out amongst the rest.


knoll   knoll l


Knoll Inc was found in the year 1938, by Hans Knoll. Hans Knoll wanted to bring a drastic change in the furniture world, so he and his team worked towards modernization. Hans Knoll started his workat the age of 24 and he quickly gained a reputation for his commitment and hard work.

Hans Knoll was always on the side of innovation and his thirst for bringing out his vision helped him create an innovative brand. Born in Germany and a member of a reputed furniture making family. Initially he opened a interior design company and slowly moved to the world of furniture design.

Hans Knoll took the next step of setting up of his own manufacturing plant, bringing out his design with perfect craftsmanship. He married Florence Schust and both took off to great heights in the design community. Though Hans Knoll passed away in 1955, Florence stood up and led the company to the position where it has reached now.

Herman Miller was found by D. J. De Pree in the year 1923. De Pree renamed the Star Furniture Co. that was there since 1905, in to Herman Miller, father-in-law of De Pree. In the initial stage the company struggled a lot with larger manufacturers especially during Great Depression.

Herman Miller started to meet success after the efforts of industrial designer Gilbert Rohde. By the mid of 20th century, Herman Miller became one of the pioneers in modern furniture design and manufacturing.

D. J. De Pree gained a reputation for his labor relation methods and leadership in furniture design world.  He passed away in the age of 99 in the year 1990.  He was famous for trusting more on the relationship she built with people than legal documents. His most distinct legacy was that he never depended on legal agreements for his business contracts. He had believed customer trust is the major ingredient for any successful business and for a smooth functioning company.

Herman Miller Furniture created  master pieces that are kept in major museums like New York Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum and the Smithsonian Institution.

Founder D. J. De Pree

knoll 1


knoll 2


Who are the major designers who joined hands with these two major furniture gurus in United States?

Knoll Inc had reached great heights along working together with major designers – Antenna Design, Formway Design, Don Chadwick, David Adjaye and Rem Koolhaas.

Herman Miller joined hands with the outstanding designers in the world like Alexander Girard, Isamu Noguchi, Robert Propst, Bill Stumpf, Don Chadwick AyseBirsel, Studio 7.5, Yves Behar and Doug Ball.


  1. Davis Pfeifer
    March 22, 2015

    Two companies that make very good products and have been well known in the furniture space for many years. It was nice to read a little about the history of the two.

  2. Todd Justinger
    March 25, 2015

    This is a great post about the history of these two companies! Herman Miller has so many great products!

  3. Samuel Fredricks
    March 26, 2015

    I think anyone that is older than 25 years old should realize what or who Herman Miller is. Great designs, quality products and a well known name.

  4. Chrissy Boremiller
    March 26, 2015

    This is awesome! Knoll is the furniture that is top notch and just like Herman Miller, it has been around a long time and is well known for quality!


Leave a Reply