André Sornay was born in Lyons in 1902. He studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. When his father passed away in 1919, he took over the family business. The following year, he stopped producing period furniture and started making contemporary furniture instead. He was a proponent of rationalization and geometric stylization. He worked with exotic woods. In 1932, he invented and patented an ornamental process that was to become the Sornay company’s hallmark: cloutage, or studding. This technique is functional as well as esthetic, since it makes the furniture more stable. From 1945 to 1958, André Sornay’s company made the transition from semi-industrial production associated with cloutage to rationalization of shapes and manufacturing mechanisms. He passed away in 2000.