Ole Wanscher studied with Kaare Klint at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen and worked with him for three years following the completion of his studies. In 1927 he set up his own office, specialising in furniture design.
Like his mentor Klint, he was influenced by classical furnishings, particularly 18th century English furniture, as well as designs from Egypt, China and Greece. One of his most famous designs is the delicate Egyptian stool.
Upon the death of Kaare Klint in 1955, Wanscher took over his position at the Royal Academy, where he remained until 1973. While there, he used his vast knowledge of furniture history to write several books on the subject.
While many of Wanscher's most beautiful pieces were made with master cabinetmaker A. J. Iverson, he also had an interest in mass production. He had a successful relationship with P. Jeppesens Møbelfabrik A/S that began in the 1950s and lasted the rest of his professional career and also designed pieces for France and Son.