Vitsoe Shelving System: by Dieter Rams

Location: multiple locations and online

Store History

  • Founded: 1959
  • Founded by: Niels Vitsœ
  • Headquarters: London

In 1959 a Danish furniture entrepreneur, Niels Vitsœ (1913-1995), and a German furniture-maker, Otto Zapf, founded Vitsoe+Zapf to realise the furniture designs of the rising star of design, Dieter Rams. The proposition was to create down-to-earth furniture that would last as long as possible – thinking that has never been more relevant than it is today. Dieter Rams (b1932) had come to their attention as a young employee of Braun in Germany when he was involved in the design of a revolutionary (to the extent that some feared for the future of the Braun company) new record player, the Braun SK4 (quickly nicknamed ‘Snow White’s Coffin’). With the bravery of Rams’s design Vitsœ produced an innovative collection of modern furniture that was initially sold largely in Germany. Introduction Sorry, no sale 60s 606 is 50 Five reasons Our heritage Vitsœ's ethos What Vitsœ means Dieter Rams Customer comments Newsletter sign-up For our occasional updates A single-minded business that spans 50 years The story In 1959 a Danish furniture entrepreneur, Niels Vitsœ (1913-1995), and a German furniture-maker, Otto Zapf, founded Vitsoe+Zapf to realise the furniture designs of the rising star of design, Dieter Rams. The proposition was to create down-to-earth furniture that would last as long as possible – thinking that has never been more relevant than it is today. Dieter Rams (b1932) had come to their attention as a young employee of Braun in Germany when he was involved in the design of a revolutionary (to the extent that some feared for the future of the Braun company) new record player, the Braun SK4 (quickly nicknamed ‘Snow White’s Coffin’). Niels Wiese Vitsoe Vitsœ’s founder, Niels Wiese Vitsœ Read Anthea Bain’s 1987 interview of Niels Vitsœ Cultural meetings With the bravery of Rams’s design Vitsœ produced an innovative collection of modern furniture that was initially sold largely in Germany. Here the Vitsœ (Zapf left in 1969) showroom became an important cultural meeting and reference point in Frankfurt. Meeting of minds In 1985 the Briton, Mark Adams – who shared a fundamental belief in good, common-sense design – was introduced to Dieter Rams and Niels Vitsœ and he established Vitsœ Limited in London to import and distribute Vitsœ furniture. Eight years later Niels Vitsœ retired and Adams became managing director of Vitsœ in Germany. In 1995 Adams transferred the corporate seat and production of the company to the United Kingdom. Today Vitsœ is an international company that sells directly to customers around the world via this website.

Website

vitsoe.com

There are a few classic designs that most people don't know about which cause them to want to break their budget when they discover them. Every client I have introduced Vitsoe shelving to has wanted to use it, even after they realized how expensive it was. Most of them were able to jigger their budget to pull it off. The rest? They're waiting.

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...Or buying the imitations like Elfa, Atlas and Rakks (all good in their own way).

Vitsoe is the name for the shelving system designed by Dieter Rams in 1960, which has launched a thousand copies and been in continuous production ever since. Imported from Europe, it's super minimal and melts into the wall, allowing you to show off only the books or accessories on your shelves. If you keep your books neat, it also minimizes visual clutter and can really open up a space.

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Vitsoe opened their first independent US showroom in NYC last month, which makes it easier to find, price and buy. It is expensive, but you can buy pieces slowly to build your system and you can always take it with you, since it will mount on to any wall and can be rearranged in nearly any configuration. It can be shelves, file cabinets, drawers and/or desk; you choose. Oh, and they also say they're working on bringing the price down.

In addition to the new NoHo showroom, Vitsoe systems and accessories can be purchased through their website.

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Maxwell left teaching in 2001 to start Apartment Therapy as a design business helping people to make their homes more beautiful, organized AND healthy. The website started up in 2004 with the help of his brother, Oliver.

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