The story of Eton begins with founders David and Annie Pettersson. During the Great Depression of the 1920s, the family sawmill was forced to close. David instead began working together with wife Annie, who ran a small dressmaking business from their home. The company began to expand and was established as “Skjortfabriken Special” (The Special Shirt Factory).
As the business began to expand, more and more orders came in from overseas, and the couple remarked that the current name “Skjortfabriken Special” was less than ideal for the international market. After a trip to England, they developed a liking for the name Eton, launching “The Eton Shirt” shortly thereafter. By the 1950s, the shirt had become so popular that the company itself was renamed in its honour.
During a routine visit, the then CEO of Eton discovered a crease-resistant material hidden away at one of the company’s suppliers. The material was rather rubbery and utterly unsuitable for dressmaking. The clothing industry as a whole was, perhaps unsurprisingly, sceptical towards this new material, whereas Eton were convinced that therein lay the future of shirt production. Together with a number of textile specialists, this singular material was developed into Eton’s secret formula for non-iron shirts, becoming an immediate success.