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Guide to the Sunbeam Randall student work, 1948-1993 (bulk 1948-1951)

Collection Overview

Kellen Design Archives
Randall, Sunbeam, 1898-1993
Sunbeam Randall student work, 1948-1993, (Bulk, 1948-1951)
0.5 linear ft: 1 box, 1 folder
Sunbeam "Sunny" Randall (1898-1993) graduated from the Parsons School of Design Interior Design Department in 1951 and worked as a professional decorator. The collection includes course materials, furniture and decorative style sketches, class notes, and a scrapbook documenting Randall's art tour of Europe as a Parsons student in 1950.

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Biographical note

Sunbeam Randall was born August 23, 1898. After marrying and raising four children, she joined the Women's Army Corps (WAC) during World War II and was consequently able to attend Parsons School of Design on the G.I. Bill. She moved from Texas to New York, where she studied interior design from 1948 until receiving her certificate of graduation in 1951. In addition to taking classes at the New York campus, Randall took part in a Parsons study-abroad program in Europe in 1950. While studying at Parsons, she worked part-time at the New York furniture company W. & J. Sloane. Following the completion of her degree, Randall returned to Texas, where she held decorating positions for various furniture and decorating companies. She then moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico, to continue her career as a decorator. Randall eventually settled in Orlando, Florida, where she died in 1993.

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Scope and Contents note

Collection consists of work produced by Sunbeam Randall as a student in the Interior Design Department at Parsons School of Design. Her notebooks are comprised of her own sketches, tracings, and drawings of furniture pieces and decorative elements, as well as magazine and catalog clippings that illustrate various historical styles. Randall’s class notes take the form of narratives and outlines; most indicate the lecturer or course title. Among her instructors were Stanley Barrows, Glenn Boyles, Jane Costello, and Elizabeth Crawford. Of particular interest is a typescript of the reading lists issued to Parsons students from 1948 to 1951.

Also included in this collection is the scrapbook Randall kept in 1950, when studying abroad in a Parsons program that took her to Austria, England, France, Germany, and Italy. The scrapbook contains postcards, maps, photographs, event programs, and ephemera illustrating notable trips and events, supplemented by Randall’s handwritten observations. The collection also includes Randall’s certificate of graduation, a few pieces of correspondence, and a small number of advertisements by the companies for which Randall worked after graduating.


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Arrangement note

Arranged in alphabetical order by subject.

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Administrative Information

Collection guide written by Bernadette Vitale in 2010; initial processing by Jillian Cuellar in 2005.

Publication Information

Kellen Design Archives August 23, 2010

66 5th Ave./
lobby level/
New York, NY, 10011

Use Restrictions

To publish images of material from this collection, permission must be obtained in writing from the Kellen Design Archives. Please contact: archivist@newschool.edu.

Immediate Source of Acquisition note

Donated by Peggy Kraemer, Sunbeam Randall's daughter, 1993.

External Support

The processing of this collection was supported in part by a grant from the J. Paul Getty Trust.

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Related Materials

The Kellen Design Archives holds the student work of Daniel Lashen (KA.0053), a fellow student in the Interior Design Department who traveled to Europe with Randall's class. The travel scrapbook in this collection features a photograph of Randall and Lashen sitting together. Additionally, the papers of Stanley Barrows (KA.0002), one of Randall's instructors and the leader of her European tour, are held by the Kellen Design Archives.

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Keywords for Searching Related Subjects

Corporate Name(s)

  • Parsons Paris.
  • Parsons School of Design. Interior Design Dept.


  • Lecture notes.
  • Notebooks.
  • Scrapbooks.
  • Student projects.


  • Art -- Study and teaching -- New York (State) -- New York -- 20th century.
  • Europe -- Description and travel.
  • Interior decoration -- Study and teaching -- New York (State) -- New York -- 20th century.
  • Interior decorators.
  • Women interior decorators.

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Collection Inventory

Title Box Folder
Class notes 1948-1951 
General, between 1948-1951  1 1
History of Art: Stanley Barrows and Glenn Boyles, 1949-1950  1 2
History of Art: Elizabeth Crawford, probably 1949-1950  1 3
History of Painting, 1948-1949  1 4
Lectures, 1951  1 5

Typed notes on the "brownstone house of Rose Cumming" and three lectures by Wallace Rosenbauer.

Title Box Folder
Diploma and commencement program, 1951  1 6
Memorial service, 1993  1 7
Notebooks: American furniture, after 1948  1 8
Notebooks: Louis XIV-Louis XVI furniture, probably 1950-1951  1 9-11
Professional, 1950s  1 12
Reading lists, 1948-1951  1 13
Title Box Folder
Travel scrapbooks, 1950 1950  1 14-19
k_6 10

Collection guide Last Updated: 08/30/2012

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