“Good design never goes out of fashion” – Holger Nielsen, Vipp Founder (1915-1992)
Not much has changed about the original design of the iconic Vipp pedal bin since Holger Nielsen made the first bin in his shop for his wife in 1939. That’s because, as Nielsen says himself, “good design never goes out of fashion” and Vipp’s long, enduring run as one of the most recognizable brands and styles for the kitchen and bath is living proof.
The Original Vipp Goes Viral
A marriage of practical functionality and clean modern design, the original Vipp pedal bin proves that superior products can “go viral” without the web. The genesis of the Vipp pedal bin is equal parts serendipity, labor of love and pure ingenuity. At 17 years old, Nielsen won a car at a football game during a raffle. Because he didn’t yet have his driver’s license, Nielsen opted to sell the car and invest in a metal turning lathe and thus, the Vipp metal factory is born in 1931.
In 1939, Nielsen’s wife, Marie, opened a salon and asked him to help her furnish it. Wanting to impress and please his wife, Nielsen spends hours in his shop and produces the very first Vipp pedal bin. The stately, pragmatic little waste bin becomes an instant hit and an important conversation piece. Marie’s customers noticed that the Vipp bin would be perfect for their husbands’ medical practices and the orders began rolling in, forcing Nielson to begin producing the bins on a larger scale. Soon, the bin that was meant to be a personal gift to his wife became a standard in Danish medical practices.
Bringing the Vipp Bin Home
Until Nielsen passed away in 1992, Vipp bins were marketed solely to businesses. But after his death, a couple important developments within the company occurred. First of all, his daughter, Jette Egelund kept the company in the family by taking over after Nielsen passed. Secondly, Jette Egelund recognized the potential for bringing the Vipp bin to a wider audience. She set about the task of making the Vipp bin available not only to businesses and professionals, but also to design-conscious consumers who could appreciate a stylish waste bin in their kitchen or bathroom. Surprisingly, the Vipp bin for the home was a hard sell. It took until 1996 for the Vipp brand to gain a foothold in the consumer market – but since then, it’s been growing steadily and safely.
Now, the Vipp line has expanded beyond the legendary pedal bin and includes the Vipp 11 toilet brush, the Vipp 1 hook, the Vipp 4s1 laundry basket and numerous other impeccably designed kitchen and bathroom accessories.
Keeping Vipp in the Family
Vipp’s continued dedication to the original philosophy and integrity of design imagined by Holger Nielsen is carried on today thanks to the company remaining a family businesses for three generations. Today, Jette Egelund is joined by her two children – Sofie, who serves as art director, and Kasper, who serves as sales and marketing director.
As Vipp continues on into the 21st century, the company has expanded both its lines and its facilities and headquarters. However, Vipp remains true to its roots and remains based in Denmark. The company is now housed in a 100-year old printing house that was renovated by Danish architect Frank Maali. The building features a showroom, a workshop for Vipp Design Lab and offices for Vipp’s employees.
Vipp – Quality Recognized
Today, after over 70 years of development, dedication and design, Vipp is an internationally recognized and respected brand. Vipp bins still appear in medical practices and businesses, but they’re also appearing in upscale homes in America, the United Kingdom, France, Germany and beyond. Perfectly designed for both public and private functionality, Vipp products are truly versatile and distinguished.
The artistry and history of Vipp is so significant that Vipp accessories have been featured in a number of charity events, designer shows and other exhibitions. Here’s a brief rundown of some of the most prominent events featuring Vipp bathroom accessories:
- In 2005, Vipp hosts its first charity in Paris at the fahsionable Silvera store. Contributors to the event include over 30 designers, including Philippe Starck, Chantal Thomass and Christian Lacroix and helps raise money and awareness for Handicap International.
- In 2006, Vipp partners with the Conran Shop in London to host an auction featuring Vipp bins decorated by Sir Terence Conran, Nicole Fahri, Karim Rashid and Ron Arad, among others. The proceeds of this event went to Oxfam, an international organization that helps fight worldwide poverty and injustice.
- Also in 2006, Vipp was invited to exhibit at Carrousel du Louvre in Paris. Chilean designer Mauricio Clavero created a challenging art experience from 36 unique Vipp bins and soap dispensers. He covered the Vipp accessories with Swarovski crystals, Sicis mosaics and provided lighting from Ambiance Lumiére. The exhibition tours major cities throughout Europe and is quite a spectacle!
Mauricio Clavero's Vipp Exhibit at the Louvre
The original Vipp bin from 1939 was also put on display at the Øksnehallen in Copenhagen – and was stolen! Luckily, you don’t have to go to such great lengths to get the distinctive look and classic design of a Vipp bin in your home. Vipp bins have reached critical mass and now you can get these once exclusive and highly coveted accessories for your home with a simple click of a mouse button. Check out our great deals on Vipp bathroom bins and accessories and Vipp Kitchen Bins and put a little piece of history in your home.
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