Crafts & Traditions

Bild einer Uhr der Lange Uhren GmbH, Glashütte

Source: Lange Uhren GmbH

Passionate Craftsmanship

Passion, energy, and a whole lot of „soul“ – these are the ingredients of arts and crafts „made in Saxony.“ Fine porcelain from Meißen, watches made in Glashütte, or Plauen Lace enjoy renown and repute around the globe. They represent exciting chapters of Saxony’s economic history and bear witness of passionate entrepreneurship. 


The Dresden master watchmaker Ferdinand Adolph Lange, for example, came to Glashütte in 1845 with a loan that had been granted by Saxony’s government under the condition that he was to create new jobs in the poorest „hamlet“ of the state. Today, „Glashütte / Sa.“ is not only the name of a town – it is also a quality seal for masterpieces of maximum precision which are still manufactured with a lot of manual work and premium craftsmanship by ten renowned watch manufacturers. 

Watches made in Glashütte are not only regular winners at international branch contests they are also leading the Top 10 of Germany’s luxury brands. 

Model mit Kleid aus Plauener Spitze auf der Berliner "Fashion Week"

Source: German Innovation Center for Embroidery (regd. assn.)


In the late 19th century, the Vogtland region, whose business community specialized in lace embroidery, was on the brink of losing out to its Swiss competitors. The production of lace was too expensive and, thus, became inaccessible to a larger circle of customers. In 1881, the Plauen entrepreneur Theodor Bickel succeeded in making a decisive breakthrough. He developed an automated technology which permitted the quicker and cheaper production of tulle lace and introduced it under the name „Plauen Lace“ to the global market. 

A success story that continues even today: „Plauen Lace“ is presented on the catwalks at the „Fashion Week“ in Berlin and graces the ladies at the Vienna Opera Ball. 

Im Atelier der Porzellanmaler der Staatlichen Porzellan-Manufaktur Meissen GmbH

Source: Staatliche Porzellan-Manufaktur Meissen GmbH (Meissen porcelain manufactory) / Lothar Sprenger


In 1708, alchemist Johann Friedrich Böttger tried to find a recipe for „making“ gold in a dark lab located in the fortress vaults of Dresden – and accidentally (re)invented European white porcelain. This caused his „employer, „ Saxony’s Elector August „the Strong,“ to found the first porcelain manufacture in Meißen in 1710. He desperately needed money to hold his baroque court, and porcelain – which had to be imported from Asia till then – was totally en vogue at the European royal courts. 300 years later, noble „MEISSEN® Porcelain“ is still treasured and cherished around the globe, even in China. 

„MEISSEN® Porcelain“ not only decorates coffee tables, but also fashion creations of Karl Lagerfeld. 


As miners, the inhabitants of the Erzgebirge Mountains always had a strong attachment to wood. After work, miners liked to pick up their wood carving knives and endulge in their hobby. What had initially begun as a mere leisure activity in the evening became a bitter necessity real soon. Because when the ore reserves came to an end, the miners had to look for a new source of income. Initially at a small scale, they earned an extra income with their wooden art. Toys from the Erzgebirge Mountains as well as figurines and pyramids became a Christmas tradition and quickly gained great renown and repute around the entire globe. Even today, virtually all towns and villages in the Erzgebirge Mountains have at least one or more artisans who are dedicated to a handicraft that is practiced not only occasionally or sporadically and out of tradition, but that distinctly characterizes an entire region and is an important economic basis even today. The Erzgebirgische Volkskunst® (Ore Mountains folk art) is still crafted primarily by hand – it’s only genuine if it’s from the Erzgebirge Mountains where it was born.

Nussknacker in der Bemalung, Erzgebirgische Holzkunst

Quelle: Tourismusverband Erzgebirge e. V.

Your Contact Person

Dr. Uwe Lienig
Industry, Innovation & Marketing
Phone: +49 (351) 2138-201 Fax: +49 (351) 2138-109

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