A little history of Gustavsberg

The Scandinavian vintage tableware that we handle the most in our store is a product of Gustavsberg of Sweden.

Currently, it is under the umbrella of a Finnish company, and in fact it was a company that was about to go bankrupt many times.

Gustavsberg began its journey as a pottery manufacturer in 1826, and before that it was a company supplying building materials to brick factories.

<See this article for the history of the Gustavsberg logo>

(Photo: Gustavsberg's office in the 19th century)

In the middle of the 20th century, we built a golden age called mid-century,

In the 1980s, under the influence of the economic recession,

Gustavsberg's high-priced tableware, which sells artistic quality, was overwhelmed by cheap, practical, and expressionless products "with factories in foreign countries".

In fact, it's not that this movement has failed to compete with price-competitive foreign companies.

There is a side that has been expelled by homegrown companies that offer Nordic simple beauty at low prices, represented by IKEA.

Gustavsberg's bone china is 10,000 yen, and IKEA tableware made in Southeast Asia is 500 yen per piece, although the materials are the same (even if the design and shape are somewhat disappointing).

This is no match.

And in the 1990s, Gustavsberg was sold to a company called KF of Daiei and Aeon in Japan.

The Gustavsberg trademark has since been passed around, and in 2004 the rights were transferred to the long-established German company Villeroy & Boch, which is now owned by the Finnish company Iittala.

In addition, the current Gustavsberg is actually no longer a company that manufactures only tableware.

Originally manufacturing ceramic bathtubs, we now manufacture water faucets and shower heads made of stainless steel.

There are few vestiges of the once world-famous manufacturer representing Europe in the 20th century, with Stig Lindberg and Lisa Larson.


Gustavsberg is completely different from its heyday in the mid-century (1950s), and it can be said that there is barely any goodwill left.

Specifically, the trade name “Gustavsberg BENPORSLIN” was dismantled and divided into “Gustavsberg” and “Gustavsbergs Porslinsfabrik”.

The former manufactures metal products such as faucets and shower heads, while the latter manufactures reproductions of traditional Gustavsberg monumental works.

However, some parts are technically more immature than midcentury.

For example, even if you look at Bersa (Berså, Bertha, Becho) teacup, the vintage color has a more lush green color. In addition, the vintage version has a round shape and is cute.

By the way, Bersa means "Azumaya", but it comes from the image of a garden in the early afternoon with ivy tangled and sunlight filtering through the foliage.

The reprint edition is also carefully made, but I would like you to keep the vintage edition at hand.

<Click here for the follow-up article>

bertha vintage (reprint version)


Owner Nakamura

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