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Iittala: The Finnish Standard

Jan 10, 2016

The Finnish homeware house Iittala is known for everyday objects that are beautiful, modern and functional.

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The Finnish glass industry standard Iittala specialises in tableware, cookware and house wares, and the production of glass design.

The Finnish company was founded in 1881 by Swede Petrus Magnus Abrahamsson. Due to a lack of skilled glassblowers in Finland, the original Iittala workforce was brought over from Sweden, Belgium and Germany. It wasn’t until the 1920s and 1930s that Iittala as we know it came into being. In that era of burgeoning creativity, Iittala began to produce more artistic pieces. Talents like Alvar Aalto and Aino Aalto, Kaj Franck, Timo Sarpaneva and Tapio Wirkkala led the way in creating glassware that was beautiful, modern and functional.

Today, Iittala continues to create glassware that is as attractive as it is functional. In 2003, Iittala added materials including ceramics and metal to its product portfolio. These days, Iittala offers its consumers not only glass, but all the essential items for cooking, setting the table and even decorating the home. •

Main image
Ultima Thule Collection (1968) by Tapio Wirkkala for Iittala.

Glass Is Tomorrow is a European network, which aims at establishing more fluid exchange of knowledge and competencies between glass and design professionals in the north, south, east and west of Europe. Glass Is Tomorrow is initiated and organized by Brussels-based creative agency Pro Materia, which also publishes TLmagazine with Paris-based publishing house Bookstorming.

Aalto vase by Alvar and Aino Aalto (1936).
Aalto vase by Alvar and Aino Aalto (1936).
Aalto vase by Alvar and Aino Aalto (1936). Varieties.
Aalto vase by Alvar and Aino Aalto (1936). Varieties.
Wine glasses and Decanter by Antonio Citterio (2004)
Wine glasses and Decanter by Antonio Citterio (2004)
Iittala Home design director Harri Koskinen
Iittala Home design director Harri Koskinen
Iittala Lantern by Harri Koskinen (1999).
Iittala Lantern by Harri Koskinen (1999).
Iittala Lantern by Harri Koskinen (1999).
Iittala Lantern by Harri Koskinen (1999).
Leimu lamp bu Magnus Pettersen (2013)
Leimu lamp bu Magnus Pettersen (2013)
Kaasa lantern by Ilkka Suppanen (2011). Birds by Oiva Toikka. Kastehelmi candleholder by Oiva Toikka (1964). Kivi candleholder by Heikki Orvola (1988). Aalto vase by Alvar and Aino Aalto (1936).
Kaasa lantern by Ilkka Suppanen (2011). Birds by Oiva Toikka. Kastehelmi candleholder by Oiva Toikka (1964). Kivi candleholder by Heikki Orvola (1988). Aalto vase by Alvar and Aino Aalto (1936).
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