Eighty percent of Svenskt Tenn’s range consists of products that are of its own design. Josef Frank alone left behind 3,000 sketches and about 250 textile designs. The store also has furniture and other objects by some of the most skilled designers and craftsmen of our time.

It is not only the aesthetic heritage that makes Svenskt Tenn so special, but also how the company is formed. Svenskt Tenn is owned by the Kjell and Märta Beijer foundation, with the goal that the company should live forever. All profit generated by the company is donated to research in areas such as environmental sustainability, genetics, biomedicine and pharmaceuticals.

Ulf Linde, professor of art once wrote this about Svenskt Tenn: “Estrid Ericson’s store was more than a store, more than a showroom. It was a detailed dream version of a way to live.”
We meet the future based on this legacy. Svenskt Tenn is an ever-changing scene – completely in the spirit of Estrid Ericson.

Since 1924

Svenskt Tenn was founded in 1924 by Estrid Ericson, who recruited Josef Frank to the company 10 years later. Together they created the elegant and boldly patterned personal interior design style that continues to pervade the range to this day.

In October 1924, Svenskt Tenn opens its doors on Smålandsgatan in Stockholm. Only thirty years old, Estrid Ericson, the art teacher from Hjo, invests the small inheritance she has just received from her father in her company.

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Interior by Svenskt Tenn


There’s nothing wrong with mixing old and new, with combining different furniture styles, colours and patterns. Things that you like will automatically fuse to form a relaxing entity.

Josef Frank wrote this in the 1950s and the fact is that his humanistic modernism, in combination with Estrid Ericson’s artistry, are still fundamental for Svenskt Tenn’s interior design philosophy today. Together the duo created a highly personal style with touches of both Viennese elegance and Swedish functionalism. In contrast to the ideal of the time, it was colourful and patterned, included both high and low, and unabashedly borrowed from all sorts of cultures and eras.

Always current

Many would attest to the fact that Josef Frank’s way of thinking is applicable even today. He is highly esteemed not the least among today’s young designers. His National Museum Cabinet has garnered a number of design accolades and his textiles are a source of inspiration for many contemporary print designers both in Sweden and other countries.

Around the turn of this century, interest in Svenskt Tenn experienced another international renaissance. The British-American interior design magazine Wallpaper wrote again and again about the strength of Josef Frank’s designs and when Ballantyne Cashmere wanted to create a modern concept in his prestigious shop in Milano, he wallpapered the walls with Frank’s “Brazil” print.

Estrid Ericson and Josef Frank actually succeeded in creating that timelessness which so many strive for but so few manage to achieve.

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Craftsmanship & Quality

“Made in Sweden” has always been and will always be highly regarded at Svenskt Tenn. Basically the entire range is manufactured in Sweden. And if we sometimes make an exception it is either because there aren’t the quality suppliers we require or the production capacity isn’t available.

Estrid Ericson was a big friend of Swedish craftsmanship. Inspired by the British arts and crafts representative William Morris, she held the highest esteem for work that was crafted by hand and that approach lives on in the company. Svenskt Tenn today has a goal to support and develop high quality Swedish handicraft. The company’s owner, the Kjell and Märta Beijer foundation and the board of Svenskt Tenn, have given express orders to never compromise on quality.

Local production

A large portion of Josef Frank’s furniture is made at the same carpentry shops in Småland and Sörmland that have been delivering them since the 1950s. The glass is made at the Reijmyre glassworks, among other places. Fabrics are made of 100 per cent cotton or linen of the highest quality. The prints are screen printed in a time-consuming process. Just 60 metres of a boldly coloured print like “Hawaii” takes an entire day to print. But screen printing pays off in the long run, not the least because it is a process that enables overprinting. For example, blue can be printed on yellow for a green surface. Josef Frank was something of a specialist in this area, and it gave his prints beautiful, living surfaces. In “Brazil” he overprinted as many as three colours. The Frank prints are also printed with reactive dyes which also impact the quality – both in terms of the feel of the textile and because they age beautifully. Reactive dyes blend into the textile fibres in contrast to pigment colours, which remain on the surface. The quality of the weave is naturally also important for the overall result.

The pewter workshop in Western Götaland in Sweden is another one of Svenskt Tenn’s long-time suppliers. Just one of Anna Petrus' pewter lions requires 20 to 30 hours of intensive work. It starts with moulding the pewter into six different shapes. Then all of the parts are polished, which requires special procedures as the lion is heavy and has many uneven parts. Finally, the parts are joined together. This process has not changed since the very first lion was produced in 1926. Even the moulds are the originals.

Hållbarhetsfilosofi - Svenskt Tenn


Svenskt Tenn’s business concept is based on a long-term approach, and the products today are already quite sustainable in many ways. But Svenskt Tenn can always be better when it comes to sustainability issues, and increasing the knowledge is an important part of that work.

In collaboration with Renée Andersson, one of Sweden's most experienced production and human rights specialists, a thorough survey of the company's manufacturing processes was conducted, and compiled in "Svenskt Tenn's Sustainability Philosophy".

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