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History

Bernhard NordmeyerIt all started with the production of dowry linen. A wedding without a well-stocked linen chest was unthinkable in the “wealthy” families. The very concept is derived from the preferred customers of the time. They inhabited manors or castles and hat little opportunity to acquire or produce goods for their exalted requirements.

As the desire for individual identification and evidence of ancestry played an important role, the dowry was preferably ornamented with a nobility or family crest.

This was the origin of picture weaving, initially on manual looms. Nobility crests were woven into table linen in a technically very complicated procedure. Obviously only the most valuable linen was suitable as a raw material here for.

With the beginning of the age of mechanical weaving mills, Nordmeyer & Kortmann produced finest quality linen fabrics, as well as table and kitchen linen made from pure and half linen in the notable Bielefeld quality. The term “Linen from Bielefeld” stands for excellence worldwide since the beginning of the 19th Century.

A particular focus was more than ever the production of table linen with included coats of arms.

Members of nobility throughout Europe and overseas, as well as embassies and hotels were among the ever-growing clientele.

The consideration of specific individual needs of our customers, combined with the highest quality and elaborate implementation is the primary concern of family Nordmeyer, operating business in fifth generation.

The company was founded in early 1862 by Bernhard Nordmeyer and Kurt Kortmann. Since 1880, after the demise of co-founder Kortmann, the company is in sole possession of the family Nordmeyer.

The sons of Bernhard Nordmeyer, Otto and Erich Nordmeyer, continued operation after his death in 1901. As Otto Nordmeyer deceased in 1927, Erich and his son Gerhard, who joined the company in 1928, maintained the business. Gerhard Nordmeyer managed the linen weaving factory located in Bielefeld for 50 years in third generation. He was committed to the tradition of linen, thus was his dedication. Born May 1st, 1906 he was educated at a prestigious weaving institution in Sorau/Niederlausitz.

Gerhard NordmeyerIn 1940, Dipl. Ing. Günther Nordmeyer, son of Otto Nordmeyer, joined the company. He operated the business together with Gerhard Nordmeyer for 20 years until his retirement in the early 70s.

In the Second World War the premises were destroyed during an air raid. Gerhard and Günther Nordmeyer, grandsons of the company founder, rebuilt the business afterwards. Focus remained on damask tablecloths amongst dowry linen, while the notion of quality always stood in the foreground.

The present owner and managing partner of Nordmeyer & Kortmann, textile merchant Bernd Nordmeyer, son of Gerhard Nordmeyer and great-grandson of the company founder, joined the business on January 1st, 1961 and still remains in office.

In 1985, when damask-weaving was no longer probable in Germany, the decision was taken to outsource the production of the damast linen to more profitable countries such as Italy and Ireland, both of which have their own long-standing traditions of linen weaving.

In 2008, Birgit Nordmeyer, daughter-in-law of Bernd Nordmeyer, became the 5th generation of Nordmeyer to lead the company. Her vision is to follow up on the family’s tradition of linen weaving, but explores new distribution channels, such as the internet for online sales and marketing. She also re-developed former company-designs. Mid of 2014 she left the company.

Birgit Nordmeyersuch as the peacock-design, together with German weavers to present fine goods - made in Germany.

Nordmeyer & Kortmann continue to specialise in the consideration of the bespoke requirements of their customers, combined with the best raw material qualities and careful execution into exclusive products.