In 1854 on April 1st, Christian Permin started Permin embroideries in Copenhagen.The main product was embroidery, especially initials on home decoration; curtains, chair sets, bed linen and towels. However, during World War I the demand for such items decreased, since people could not afford such luxury any more. Weak business therefore forced Permin to seek alternative customers and hence develop new products such as worked canvas, trammed canvas and traced embroidery. At that time they did not have graphs, so the shops borrowed the ready made models for the customers to copy the design and make their own embroidery.
In 1919 the company moved closer to the centre of Copenhagen. They started a shop and a design workshop and business grew rapidly. In the light of the growing unemployment in the 1930es the “do-it-yourself” trend grab hold of the Danes. At the same time Permin started to export the embroideries to Sweden. However, during World War II it was difficult to export, so in 1942 the first subsidiary was founded, namely Carl Permin AB in Borås – Sweden.
Soon also a subsidiary in Norway was founded; this was in 1947 and was done to serve the rather wide country. The first printed coloured chart was made in 1953 it was printed colour by colour through the machine. Naturally the procedure was extremely costly.
Today – more than 165 years after Christian Permin started the company – we are fully computerized, though the embroideries are, of course, still made by our skilled designers.
The Permin Company has been in the Permin family for 3 generations, starting with Christian Permin followed by his son Carl Permin and eventually by his son Niels Permin, after Niels Permin the present manager Frits Nordlunde took over the company. However, Niels Permin stayed in the board until 1995, when he decided to retire at the age of 81.
The Permin group employs about 30 persons plus a major numbers of home workers.
Each year about 200 – 300 Permin products are being produced and exported to more than 70 countries around the world.