When I first started writing this blog I thought I would share with you all the techniques and craftsmanship that goes into making a handmade brush but as usual I soon got side tracked and discovered an altogether more personal and inspiring story. I love triumph over adversity stories and the German brush maker Burstenhaus Redecker all began when back in 1935 when the now owner Gernot Redeckers father, Friedrich Redecker was going blind by the age of four. This struck a nerve with me as my own father was born partially sighted, fortunately things had progressed and my fathers sight was restored. Friedrich however was not so fortunate and was sent to a school for the blind where he learned the craft of making brushes that would support his family and be passed down a further two generations, he spent his life honing his skills and selling his brushes door to door. Friedrich had 3 sons and none of them followed into the business, after his death at the age of 72 (you don’t retire when you do something you love), his eldest son Gernot decided to take the remaining brushes and set up a market stall, he didn't know what else to do with them, by the end of the first weekend he had sold out. Since then they have continued to make brushes and develop it into an International business, but the original ethics of producing quality hand made natural brushes using ethical sourcing still remains.
Friedrich has certainly left a legacy for his family to build on and now his grandson Felix is continuing the family brush making tradition. The next time we use a Redecker brush whether it’s to sweep the floor, clean the toilet, wash our dishes, clean our computer, plant pots etc etc. It all began with one inspiring man who overcame his disability and learned a skill which enabled him to support his family for generations, Friedrich Redecker we salute you!
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