design history

Swedish design history that still going strong

Ballograf loves good design and is part of the Swedish design history as well. But here we intended to highlight some other great design classics from Sweden.

Kånken – Fjällräven

Did you notice that the most valuable player of every game of the U18 World Cup in icehockey, which recently ended(Sweden won by the way) was awarded a blue Kånken bag?

Fjällräven started in the 60’s (just like our Epoca pen) by Åke Nordin from Örnsköldsvik trying to find a solution to the un-ergonomic backpacks that were on the market for hikers and outdoor enthusiasts at the time.

After reports that school kids got back problems from their heavy messenger bags, Åke got the idea for Kånken- a cheap backpack with space for what is needed, plus a seat pad in the back. Kånken sold a lot of bags for a period, and then lost sales. Only now, for the past ten years, the backpack has been resurrected with great success, and is now available in a variety of designs and colors.

The May flower

Sometimes it is not the appearance or the material that is the focus, but the purpose. For the Swedes the may flower needs no presentation, the story is well known. But for you outside of Sweden my need to know that it is a small flower pin sold by children for children every spring to raise money
to decrease the impact of child poverty in Sweden.

design mayflower
All the colors since 1907
(majblomman.se)

Beda Hallberg decided to help vulnerable families, at a time when tuberculosis and deadly childhood diseases were like a dark cloud across society. In 1907, Beda came up with the idea that for every 10 cents gift for the newly started collection, you got a paper flower as a thank you.

The success was a fact and every person proudly carried this flower on their coat collars and scarves.

Lundby dollhouses

Despite, or due to the fact that we live in a time with screens, blogs, influencers and Youtubers even down in the younger ages, playing with dollhouses thrives. It’s not about fancy castles, or action-packed stories. It’s about everyday life. Lundby’s dollhouses creates realistic environments for children to immerse into.

design dollhouse
The classic dollhouse from Lundby

It all started in Gothenburg during the 40’s when Grete Thomsen made a dollhouse with furniture for her niece to play with. This was an incredibly appreciated toy that was widely used by many children. Grete’s husband Axel thought it was time to try the luck making more to sell. One year after the first order, a dollhouse factory was opened in Lerum just outside Gothenburg.

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