Iittala Glassworks was created in 1881 by Peter Magnus Abrahamsson, a Sweedish master-glassblower. The company originally created blown, pressed, polished, painted and, etched glass. Beginning in the 1930’s the company held glass design competitions, an outcome of these competitions was ittalia’s most popular glass object, the Savoy vase designed by Alvar Aalto in 1936.
Iittala is widely known for their long list of acclaimed designers: Aino Aalto, Alvar Aalto, Göran Hongell, Erkki Vesanto, Tapio Wirkkala, Kaj Franck, Timo Sarpaneva, Valto Kokko, Jorma Vennola, Oiva Toikka, Markku Salo, Heikki Orvola, Kerttu Nurminen, Harri Koskinen, Annaleena Hakatie, Alfredo Häberli and many others.
There are four major groups of iittala products: Kitchenware and tableware, Glassware, Decorative objects and limited edition glass artwork.
Iittala tableware and glassware is what iittala is most widely known for. Grouped by pattern, they include everything from wine glasses and water glasses to plates, serving bowls and dessert items. Often candle sticks and other decorative objects are manufactured to match the set.
There are a wide variety of patterns available in the iittala collections, some originally designed in the '40s and '50s but still manufactured in modern times and others brand new designs by newer Finnish glass designers following in their predecessors footsteps.
Another area of manufacture of iittala products are decorative objects, primarily for the home. They include candlesticks, objects d'arte, vases, Christmas decorations and the like.
Some of the more common iittala products include:
iittala Candle Holders