The Monitor house

Monitor-8

The Monitor textile industry was established in 1949. The textile mill was built in 1948 and it was owned by AB John Eriksson and Co from Borås as a branch. The reason for selecting Tibro as the location for the mill was that Tibro had a lot of female labour. During a period of ten years, this business was run parallell to the one in Borås.

Some 75 sewers at mixed ages worked at the mill, all of them dressed in white overalls. The fifteen men employed at the time worked as machine surveyors, at the filing or at the warehouse. Primarily, the staff made shirts – ”the Monitor shirt” – but also pyjamases were made here.

Monitor-Eriksson-AB-1951The ground floor housed the office, the changing rooms and the canteen. For some years in the 1950s, kitchen staff were employed to do the cooking for the workers. Later on the canteen was used by those bringing their own food. The second floor housed the pressing and the laying and at the third floor you could find the sewing and inspection departments.

In the beginning, the major part of the shirts were one-coloured but at a later stage they were made in different patterned fabrics The materials were cotton, jersey and nylon. The so-called button-down-shirts were difficult to manufacture.

Also finer shirts with a folded collar were manufactured. One sewer didn’t produce a complete shirt but she did one part of it and she did piecework. A sewer did earn quite a good salary according to some sewers interviewed, but the work was monotonous and boring.

Some of the sewing was outsourced on seamstresses working from their homes. They were able to borrow a sewing machine from the mill.

monitor-sommerskorThe Monitor shirt factory was in operation until 1977. Then it went bakrupt after several years of financial straits. Some 60 sewers in the upper middle age had to leave. As the furniture industry was also in a decline, it was difficult to find replacement work for those who had to quit.

The mill was bought by Tulins from Örebro, which sold clothing and shoes in the mill premises. Five sewers from the shirt factory were employed at the superstore which opened the following year, in 1978.

At Tibro cabinet-making, sculptors have been used for various decorations. To secure a continuation of this profession, a sculptor education was started in 1980, 11 students from all parts of Sweden were trained under the direction of The Swedish Employment Service, AMS. They moved in to the premises of Monitor.

Now Inredia has moved in to the Monitor shirt factory, a meeting-place for interior design in harmony with the cultural heritage of Tibro.