Astrid Sampe

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Astrid Sampe, approximately 1980

Astrid Sampe (1909–2002) was a Swedish textile designer who for a large part of her professional life was affiliated with the textile department at Nordiska Kompaniet but also worked for several other textile producers.

Sampe studied at Konstfack in Stockholm and later at the Royal College of Art in London, and in 1937, she started working as a designer for Nordiska Kompaniet. A year later she became head of Nordiska Kompaniet's textile design department (Textilkammaren) and remained so until 1971.

She was very successful at the World Fairs in Paris 1937 and in New York 1939. For the exhibition in New York she worked on the design of the Swedish Pavilion together with the architect Sven Markelius. She produced a number of influential designs and also connected many successful designers, architects and artists to Nordiska Kompaniet's textile department. Among these people are famous Danish designer Arne Jacobsen and Swedish designer Stig Lindberg. In 1972 Astrid Sampe retired from Nordiska Kompaniet and established her own studio in Stockholm.

Astrid Sampe was an innovative designer who designed modern textiles for industrial production while still preserving and extending the traditions of Nordic textile design. She was the first designer in Sweden to experiment with fibreglass cloth and also to use data based patterns. In 1955 she produced several designs for domestic linens with geometric patterns and folk-inspired motifs that became a huge success. Astrid Sampe designed products for a number of Swedish textile companies such as Kasthall and Almedahls, and her designs include Liljerand, Liljeruta, and Versailles. She also designed for Knoll International in New York and Donald Brothers in Dundee. Some of her textiles are still in production.

In 1949 Astrid Sampe co-wrote the book Textiles Illustrated with Vera Diurson. A year later she was elected an honorary member of the Royal Designers for Industry in London. In 1954 she was awarded a Grand Prix at the Triennale in Milan and in 1956 she received the Gregor Paulsson Trophy.


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  • Atle Bjarnestam, Eva: De formade 1900-talet. Design A-Ö. Stockholm: Natur & Kultur, 2005.