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Workshop — History

Wegner & PP

The longstanding collaboration between Hans J. Wegner and PP Møbler has been pivotal to the development of the workshop and brand. Wegner constantly challenged our craftsmen to think in new ways.

Wegner’s hands-on approach to solving technical challenges and his precise drawings and guidelines made it a pleasure to work on his furniture. Above all Wegner was admired and respected for his exceptional cabinetmaking skills. Ejnar Pedersen has said many times, “Wegner is the most skilled cabinetmaker, I have ever met!”

Underpinning this collaboration was the shared pursuit of excellence and the satisfaction of pursuing the more experimental areas of the craft. We have re-launched several of Wegner’s most challenging designs true to his original ideas and have had the privilege of bringing several new Wegner creations to life.

Wegner was considered a member of the team at PP Møbler and during his frequent visits he would often walk past the offices directly to the workshop to discuss a specific challenge with the craftsmen.

First encounter

"Our craftsmen need to have pride in their work. Besides, PP Møbler only produces first class quality.”

Ejnar Pedersen, co-founder

The Papa Bear Chair was our first introduction to Wegner. We produced the frame in the 1950’s and 60’s as a sub-supplier to it’s manufacturer AP Stolen.

On his initial visit to our workshop to inspect the work in progress, Wegner questioned the need for such high quality on a part that would be hidden by upholstery.

Ejnar Pedersen responded by stating that the craftsmen, “needed to have pride in their work. Besides, PP Møbler only produces first-class quality”.
This statement came as a surprise to Wegner. Usually, he would be the first to speak up for the quality of the work but in this instance his demands for excellence were matched.

Throughout the 1950’s and 60’s Wegner was busy supplying new designs for six other companies and PP Møbler was content producing prototypes and working as a subcontractor. Nevertheless, during this period Wegner developed a close friendship with Ejnar Pedersen and the staff at PP Møbler.

In 1961, Wegner’s mentor and friend, Master of Craftsmen Johannes
Hansen died. Furthermore, in 1966, the annual Cabinetmaker’s Guild’s Autumn Exhibition, where Wegner presented most of his visionary work, ceased to operate.

Wegner missed the close collaboration with Johannes Hansen through which he could achieve his full potential and an environment in which to develop his ideas. Eventually, Wegner turned to PP Møbler with an offer for closer collaboration.

In 1969, Wegner designed his first chairs, pp201 | pp203 exclusively for PP and urged Ejnar Pedersen to start selling under the name and brand of PP Møbler.

Wegner himself designed the characteristic logo of PP Møbler and for the following 20 years all of our marketing material. Thus he intentionally advanced PP Møbler from being a sub-supplier into an independent brand.

In the 1970’s, 80’s and 90’s the furniture market was heavily influenced by mass production and costs minimisation. Nevertheless, it was during this period that Wegner established the core of PP Møbler’s product line.

A number of exquisite new products were created featuring highly detailed joinery, ingenious constructions and subtle combinations of wood, steel, rope and upholstery that demonstrate Wegner’s continuing visionary thinking. These include the pp75 table, the Captain’s Chair, the Rocking Chair, the Circle Chair and the pp68/pp58 Final Chair.

An important part of building up the product line was to take over the licenses for discontinued Wegner models. In the mid-1970’s, Chinese Chair pp66, originally designed in 1945 for Fritz Hansen was initiated. 

Soon after the key designs produced by Andreas Tuck were added to the collection when that business ceased trading.

photo: Tage Nielsen

In 1990 Wegner and PP Møbler finally settled their common ambition for the future of the Company by undertaking the responsibility for the unique collection of modern classics that had been produced in the 1950’s and 60’s by one of the outstanding Danish workshops of the period, Johannes Hansen.

Among Wegner’s masterpieces produced by PP Møbler since this time are the Round Chair, the Minimal Chair, the Peacock Chair, the Architect’s Desk, the Valet Chair, the Tub Chair and many others.

Today the Wegner designs produced at PP Møbler constitute the fine crafts collection of Wegner and demonstrate an impressive insight into the amazing legacy of this true master of modernism

Designer Hans J. Wegner with chair models spread on a table in front of him