Born into wealth, Dorothy Draper was the first woman to establish an interior design firm in 1923, when a woman going to business by herself was considered risky as well as socially uncommon.
Drapers confidence, and unique style gave her an ability to step out of the common historical designs of her time, and run ahead of designers of her time because she didn't feel pressured to conform. Her confidence allowed her to make the right decisions every time- “if it looks right, it is right”.
Draper designed for the very wealthy society figures. But that was not all, she had commercial business knocking on her door as well. She often custom designed for hotels, restaurants, theaters, department stores, commercial establishments, corporate offices. She designed furniture for Ficks Reed, Heritage, as well as a many fabric lines for Schumacher. Above that, she offered decorating advice to the every day reader Good Housekeeping Magazine.
-Dorothy Draper used white and glossy black on furniture and decor.
-Dorothy Draper used vibrant colors where many didn't have the guts to go. She populized new colors and never-seen-before- color combinations.
-Dorothy Draper was known for using bold stripes
-Dorothy Draper used ornate plaster designs moldings, and picture frames often in Baroque style.
-Dorothy Draper was known for her black and white checkered floors
-Dorothy Draper used massive, paneled, lacquered doors. Massive hardware on doors.
-Dorothy Draper used elaborate plaster or intricate mirror frames