Inlaid linoleum Pattern through and through

is a type of linoleum with a multi-colored pattern through the full depth of the floor covering. Large volumes of this material were produced at the beginning of the 20th century. For the architects of this era (Peter Behrens, Bruno Paul, Albin Müller, Josef Hoffmann, Henry van de Velde, Richard Riemerschmidt etc.), the design of linoleum patterns was an exciting warm-up exercise.

“Anker-Marke”, design 4101, codename: Stendal, Delmenhorst Linoleum Factory.

Inlaid linoleum was produced from Walton cement with the addition of wood flour, pigments and fillers. Various, very fine-grained linoleum bases were applied individually to the jute fabric, using sheet zinc templates with apertures (small holes) corresponding to the pattern, and layered onto each other to create the desired multi-colored linoleum sheet. In the next step, the base material was compressed on a hydraulic flat-bed press, the so-called “inlaid press”. The compression process was followed by a “smoothing” step on a second flat-bed press. In this process, paraffin wax was rubbed into the patterned side of the linoleum, or the patterned side was treated with a paraffin oil mist and smoothed again.

Schlüsselmarke, inlaid No. 4710, pattern and colors durable throughout, Bremer Linoleumwerke Delmenhorst.

Because the pattern extended through the entire layer of the linoleum sheet, the flooring pattern would not disappear even with heavy wear. Fine geometrical or floral elements were mainly used for the patterns, in many cases also architectural large-scale patterns in two or more shades or multi-colored carpet-like motifs (“Persian carpets” had up to 18 colors).

Origin: Roland A. Hellmann, Bauwelt 34/07