Our story begins in 1911 at the coastal village of Grundsund, on the stormy Swedish West coast, where Carl A. Grundén, the son of a North Sea fisherman, started producing oiled garments commonly known as oilskins. The people of this Swedish West Coast village were focused and driven to produce raingear made with the very best quality and durability to protect their professional fishermen (the husbands, fathers and sons of the Swedish coastline) working the stormy waters of the North Sea and the North Atlantic.
World War I enveloped all of Europe and also caused the halt of oiled garment production in the small village of Grundsund, because the war effort consumed all available materials. Not until 1926 was Carl A. Grundén once again able to continue his production of oiled garments in Grundsund to protect the professional fishermen of the North Sea and the North Atlantic. At that time the company was named Grundéns Regnklader A.B. and has ever since designed, developed and manufactured rainwear for professionals ashore and at sea.
Until the early 1930s, these garments were made of unbleached canvas and aptly called “oilskins”. They were sewn together, dipped into barrels of boiled linseed oil until saturated, and hung up to dry at room temperature for fourteen days. Then they were taken down and painted by hand using large brushes with a mixture of boiled linseed oil and special varnishes, followed by another fourteen days of drying.
It was later in this same decade that the first rubberized fabrics were introduced, and Carl A. Grundén in his quest for the best quality fabrics for professional fishermen began using them as soon as they were proven to be more durable and more comfortable. They quickly found favor with professional seamen because they stood up to abrasion better, were more comfortable than oil cloth and smelled a lot better. This rubberized fabric also allowed for much faster production times, which meant that this small factory on the West coast of Sweden was able to produce more of their high quality products and make them available to more people who needed them.
In the 1950’s, PVC-coated fabrics were first used. PVC coatings have been changed and improved over the years, but they are still the leading choice of raingear for most outdoor industrial professionals. If you are standing under a fire hose hour after hour, there is still nothing better than PVC-coated fabrics for ultimate protection.
Today, Grundéns Regnklader A.B. still honors the original goals of Carl A. Grundén, and we continue to manufacture waterproof clothing using the highest quality materials and workmanship. Our products have been continually tested in the toughest laboratory known to man – outdoors, by hardworking men and women, on all major bodies of water around the world, often in extreme high latitude weather.
Grundéns protective clothing is best known for its rugged performance within the commercial marine industry. Discover what many already know – Grundéns professional rainwear was and is the best you can wear, own and use day after day. There is no other personal protective gear that stands the test of time like Grundéns of Sweden.