Dorothy Thorpe was born in Salt Lake City, UT in 1901. She graduated from the University of Utah and settled in Glendale, CA in the 1930s. She produced complete sets of table ensembles which were sold at high-end department stores throughout the U.S. Thorpe is best known for her simple and classic style.
Thorpe was a mid-century designer, not a manufacturer, of glassware. She purchased "blanks" from manufacturers then decorated them with her personal designs. Inspired by trips to Hawaii, Thorpe originally designed glassware with eucalyptus, irises, roses and narcissus flowers. These designs were created through a sandblasting technique onto the blank glassware. By the mid-century, Thorpe designed glassware with simple silver and platinum wide band rims. This clean modern design was recently revived by the television show Mad Men.
Thorpe died in San Diego, CA in 1989.