Holger Nielsen 1939 Pedal Bin
When his wife, a hairdresser, needed help furnishing her new salon, this young Danish metalworker built three sturdy and practical trash bins, operated by a foot pedal. When he later won a car at a raffle, but could not drive it since he had no license, he decided to sell it and invest the money in his factory workshop. This enabled him to start manufacturing his bins industrially. They soon became popular in doctors’ offices, since not having to use one’s hands to open the lid made it hygienic, an advantage that also appealed to more and more private households. Sales soared. The brand broadened its offering to a range of household products that are sold worldwide today. What all the – still family owned – company’s products have in common, is that they exist in only one version, following the company’s philosophy of creating an ‘essential’ product. Longevity, simplicity and a color range of black, white or shades of gray are part of its strategy to provide products that fit into many homes and ’have a chance to last a very long time’. The company name may be onomatopoetic, mimicking the sound of the lid closing, but it is also the Danish word for the seesaw mechanism used for the pedal opening.