Boston native Paul McCobb (1917-1969) was best known for what the New York Times called his "sleek, uncluttered and modular design." Although McCobb may have been influenced by other modern designers of his day, he worked to cultivate a home-grown American style.

McCobb and BG Mesberg, a New York furniture distributer, formed the Planner Group, which would be one of McCobb’s best known furniture lines, and one of the best selling furniture lines in the United States in the 1950s. This low-cost furniture was designed for the smaller spaces, and its beauty from every angle was meant to make it have the psychological effect of looking bigger in the space. While the collaboration at the Planner Group ended in 1964, McCobb went on to work as a design consultant with other firms, including the Singer Manufacturing Company, Columbia Records, and Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company.