The history of Varemessen
Varemessen's remarkable journey through time has truly been characterized by outstanding development, and we can proudly state that over 980,000 customers have been part of this fantastic story from 1935 to the present day. From its humble beginnings at Kordilgade 2 in Kalundborg to the digital transformation in 2020, Varemessen has been an icon of dedication and innovation.
November 17, 2020, not only marked the launch of Varemessen's online presence but also a turning point where the legacy of the past met the demands of the present. Grethe's courageous decision in 1990, after her husband's passing, steered the company in a new direction, focusing on quality clothing for fashion-conscious women. Tanja and Chris took over the reins in 2020 and changed not only the logo but also the way Varemessen interacted with the world.
The digital door that opened that day symbolized not only change but also a continuity of the legacy from the past. Varemessen not only became accessible to a broader audience but also became an icon of tradition and innovation in a new era of commerce. Varemessen's history is an inspiring tale of courage, commitment, and passion. From Knud Buur Knudsen's visionary start to Tanja and Chris's digital expansion, Varemessen continues to write its own legendary story, inviting visitors into a world of quality and unique experiences. Welcome to the exciting universe of Varemessen!
1935 - Varemessen is founded
On 25 March 1935, Knud Buur Knudsen founded Varemessen, a shop that sold its own products, located at Kordilgade 2 in Kalundborg. This milestone moment marked the beginning of a story of his dedication to trade and the creation of a unique place where his personal wares were presented to the delight of the local population. With Varemessen, Knudsen not only created a place for trade, but also a strong link between himself and the people who would visit his shop and appreciate his goods. This significant action became part of his legacy and contributed to the local history of Kalundborg.
1936 - The first image
Varemessen enters a new era, now proudly bearing its first authentic logo and officially transforming into a well-defined brand. This milestone marks an exciting development where Varemessen is not just a place, but also a recognizable identity that symbolizes quality, unique products and a devotion to trade. With this newly conceived expression, Varemessen rises to new heights as an actor that not only offers goods, but also a unique experience that connects customers with the essence of the brand that Knud Buur Knudsen has created.
1960 - Varemessen in pictures
In this photo from 1960, you can catch a glimpse of Varemessen, which can be found on the left side of the photo. This wonderful little slice of Varemessen gives us an insight into a time when trade and socializing flourished in this unique place. It is like a window back into history, where you can sense the contours of the timeless atmosphere that characterized Varemessen at this time.
1967 - A new employee
A young and ambitious Fynbo (a person from the danish island Fyn) named Hans Erik Jørgensen joins Varemessen's ranks. At just 27 years old, Hans Erik is already ready to take on new challenges and contribute to the company's development. His enthusiasm and dedication to trading becomes clearly visible when he begins his career at Varemessen. With his keen business insight and commitment to the company's future growth, Hans Erik sets about creating his mark on Varemessen's history, which would later shape the company for decades to come.
1972 - Varemessen from the outside
This photo from Varemessen shows the characteristic illuminated sign that adorns the facade. This unique sign casts a brilliant glow over the surroundings and acts as a magnetic point that draws attention to itself. It is as if the light itself dances on the facade and invites visitors into a world of possibilities and experiences. It is a glimpse of the special atmosphere that defines Varemessen and makes it a place that is not only about goods, but also about a unique aesthetic and an experience of pure magic.
1972 - The plane disaster in Dubai
A heartbreaking tragedy struck on March 14, 1972, when Knud Buur Knudsen and his beloved family were taken from us in a terrible plane crash in Dubai. This painful event shook not only those who knew them personally, but also those who had been inspired by Knudsen's commitment and dedication to Varemessen.
In this unexpected farewell, the world lost a visionary entrepreneur and a devoted family. Knudsen left behind a legacy that would continue to shine like a star in the sky, as a reminder of his contribution to the world of commerce and his deep connection to Varemessen. His spirit will forever live on in the hearts he touched and the impact he had on the community around him.
1972 - Varemessen changes hands
After many years of dedicated service, it was Hans Erik, a faithful employee, who stepped in as the successor to Varemessen. Together with his devoted wife, Grethe, he took up the baton and led Varemessen into a new era. This transition was not only a change of ownership, but also a continuation of Varemessen's history, where the passion for trade and socializing remained unwavering. Hans Erik and Grethe's involvement was a continuation of the spirit that Knud Buur Knudsen had created, and they became guardians of Varemessen's unique heritage and future.
1979 - The new image
After taking over Varemessen, Hans Erik and Grethe decided to breathe new life into the company by changing the logo. This decision marked the beginning of a new era for Varemessen, where their personal visions and ideas were incorporated into the visual expression. The logo change became a symbol of renewal and continued commitment to creating a memorable experience for customers, while at the same time honoring the history and roots of Varemessen.
1980 - Control the numbers
In this photo clip from a newspaper article, the married couple Hans Erik and Grethe, the proud owners of the Varemessen, are seen with a headline that reveals their remarkable action: Preservation of Old Cash Registers from 1935. This significant gesture sheds light on their commitment to the history of Varemessen and the deeply felt respect they have for its heritage. The image of the married couple is a reminder that behind this simple expression of preservation lies a wealth of information that binds the past together with the present, and which manages to shape the future of Varemessen.
1988 - Home textiles
In this photo from 9 May 1988, we see Hans Erik Jørgensen standing beaming in his new business premises, which is now dedicated to the sale of home textiles. Hans Erik radiates pride and commitment as he stands surrounded by a carefully selected collection of textiles. This moment captures the beginning of a new era in Varemessen's history, where the passion for interior design and quality becomes a central part of the company's identity. Hans Erik's energy and focus testify to his targeted efforts to offer something unique to his customers and to continue Varemessen's development as a destination for unique goods and experiences.
1990 - Hans Erik Jørgensen dies
In 1990, Varemessen and its community were touched by a deep sadness when Hans Erik Jørgensen passed away after fighting a long-term illness for a year. His untimely passing left a great void both in the company and in the lives of those who knew him. Hans Erik Jørgensen was not only a key figure in Varemessen's development, but also a treasured personality who had left a mark on the community and the trade world with his passion and dedication. His legacy and influence would continue to live on as a reminder of his commitment and contribution to Varemessen and the community of which he was a part.
1990 - Sold! & Bought again
In the year 1990, after Varemessen briefly changed hands and was on the new owner's course for just 3 weeks, Grethe Jørgensen intervened decisively. The new owner, a 90-year-old Copenhagener with many years of experience and good ideas, could not manage the task and wanted to close the business. But Grethe Jørgensen stood firm and refused to let 20 years of devotion and hard work go to waste. She paused briefly, her eyes filled with emotion, before continuing, “I couldn't bear the thought of seeing our loyal staff out of work. They weren't just colleagues, but an extended family who had created something beautiful together. "
With tireless determination, Grethe chose to buy back Varemessen and sought strength in the collaboration with an employee, Lisbeth Kjærgaard, who had been part of the company since 1986. Together, they continued to shape Varemessen's future, strengthened by their shared dedication and willingness to preserve the company's heritage and spirit. Their determination and commitment created a new chapter in the company's remarkable history.
1992 - Varemessen from the outside
In this photo from 1992, Varemessen reveals itself from the outside with an updated appearance, where modern signs and logos adorn the facade. This visual change marks a time of renewal and an up-to-date identity for Varemessen. The facade radiates a contemporary sheen, and the modern elements add a new layer of aesthetics to Varemessen's well-known exterior face. This image captures the moment where tradition meets progress and contributes to Varemessen's ability to remain relevant and inviting to visitors in a changing world.
2000 - Varemessen closes
In 2000, Grethe made a sad but well-deserved decision to close the Varemessen and enter a well-deserved retirement. After decades of dedicated work and commitment, she chose to close this chapter in her life and enjoy the fruits of her hard work. The closing of Varemessen marked the end of an epic journey that started with her husband's vision and was shaped by her own leadership and passion. Grethe left behind a deep legacy of memories, strength and courage that would remain as an inspiring image of her efforts and contribution to both Varemessen and the community she was a part of.
2016 - Grethe dies
In 2016, sad news was received when it was announced that Grethe had passed away after a short illness, at the age of 73. Her sudden passing left a great void in those who knew her and the community she had been an integral part of. Grethe was not only a dedicated business woman, but also a beloved personality who had marked Varemessen and its history with her strength, determination and passion. Her obituary was a reminder of the contribution she had made to the business and to those around her, and it served as a tribute to a woman who had helped shape the Varemessen's legacy and development.
2020 - Tanja and Chris take over
In 2020, a new beginning will be inscribed in Varemessen's history, when Tanja and Chris reopen the company online. This courageous act revives a precious legacy and brings to life the spirit of quality and devotion, a legacy that Grethe once personified. With a clear objective to offer women's clothing of the highest standard, Tanja and Chris bring Varemessen back to life and preserve the special atmosphere that Grethe and her husband once created. What makes this revival even more remarkable is that Tanja is the granddaughter of Hans Erik Jørgensen and Grethe Jørgensen. This fact adds to their initiative an extra dimension of personal connection and deep respect for the rich history that has led up to this moment. The reopening of Varemessen online will not only be a platform for trade, but also a living monument to dedication, style and quality – a continuation of the legacy that now connects across generations and continues to enrich the history of Varemessen.
2020 - Varemessen goes online
On 17 November 2020, Varemessen opened its virtual doors and could now be visited online for the first time. This remarkable step marked a new era for Varemessen, expanding its presence into the digital space. With this online presence, Varemessen became accessible to a wider audience who could now explore and enjoy the quality products and unique experiences that Varemessen had to offer, wherever they were. This exciting development testifies to Varemessen's ability to adapt to the trends and needs of the times, while continuing to deliver the high standard for which it had always been known.
2020 - The new image
After taking over Varemessen, Tanja and Chris made the decision to renew the logo. "The new logo is elegant and reflects in several ways the direction we want to take Varemessen in," says Chris Rosenberg.
This change in the logo not only marks a visual renewal, but also a symbol of a new vision and course for Varemessen under their leadership. The new logo will be a visual interpretation of their goals and ambitions and underlines their commitment to preserving Varemessen's heritage while shaping its future.
2023 - Significant clothing business
In 2023, Varemessen shines as a significant clothing store with an impressive presence and influence in the fashion world. After reopening in 2020 as an online clothing destination, Varemessen has managed to expand its reach and attract an ever-growing customer base from both Denmark and Sweden.
Tanja and Chris' visionary leadership has been crucial to the company's continued success. Their ability to unite the past with the present and create a bridge between generations has given Varemessen a unique and authentic identity. Tanja's personal connection as the granddaughter of Hans Erik Jørgensen and Grethe Jørgensen has added a deep resonance to the company's history, contributing to its unique appeal.