More than 250 years ago, in 1746 art and business joined hands when the 23 year old artist, Jean-Henri DOLLFUS started a joint venture with two equally young entrepreneurs Jean-Jacques SCHMALZER and Samuel KOECHLIN. Capitalizing on the fashion trend at the time of painted fabrics and Jean-Henri's talent, they were the very first to manufacture hand painted Indian prints in Europe.
For many years the business was a fabric printing business only, and run jointly by the two brothers, Jean-Henri and Jean DOLLFUS.
Long before globalization became the buzzword that it is today, these men had an international vision for their company, exporting their fabrics to all parts of the world.
Near the end of the 18th century Jean-Henri DOLLFUS' nephew, Daniel DOLLFUS took over the reins of the business. In the spring of 1800, he married Anne-Marie MIEG and joined his wife's name onto his own, as was often the custom in those days. That same year he gave the company the new trade name of DOLLFUS-MIEG & Compagnie, or D.M.C.
It was while completing his studies in Leeds, England that Dollfus junior discovered the invention of the chemist JOHN MERCER - "mercerising" - the process of passing the cotton thread through caustic soda thereby modifying the cotton and giving its strength, longevity and silky appearance.
It was also in the 19th century that DMC established strong links with the famous embroiderer, Therese de DILLMONT. The friendship between this talented woman and Jean DOLLFUS-MIEG led her to move to Dornach, a town close to Mulhouse, where she founded her own embroidery school in close cooperation with DMC.
Therese's greatest success was her Encyclopedia of Ladies' Handicrafts, which was published in 1886 and translated and distributed to seventeen countries.
Both world wars slowed down production, and in 1961 the company merged with THIRIEZ & CARTIER BRESSON. The new company kept the trade name of DMC, with THIRIEZ & CARTIER BRESSON contributing the now famous horse's head.
Today the DMC Group remains an international organization manufacturing consumer threads, industrial thread and textile related products. The company's commitment to quality and creativity remains as strong now as it was in the 18th century. The Dollfus family's early motto remains alive today:
TENUI FILO MAGNUM TEXITUR OPUS
"From one fine thread a work of art is born"