Fornasetti - How it's made

It’s often the places off limits to public view that hide the most spectacular and unique surprises — one of these hidden gems is the fornasetti atelier.

Founded by piero fornasetti in Milan at the beginning of the 1950s, this whimsical workshop is filled with ideas and objects that come to life everyday through the hands of skilled craftsmen.


Saturated in tradition, knowledge and passion for the italian brand, each artisan may work on a single piece for many months before it is finally finished. With a dedicated team working on woodworking, pottery making, painting, varnishing and archiving, the fornasetti headquarters is a laboratory of ingenuity, creativity and master craftsmanship, that — before now — remained a mystery.

The ‘painting’ floor features a team of skilled artisans who hand-render each of the fornasetti designs

An artisan may work for many months on a particular piece 

The varnishing studio is where pieces are polished and readied for final production 

Original design objects are each carefully handmade in the fornasetti workshop

Screen printing is done by hand in the atelier

A print of silver-painted fish dries on a rack before it is prepared for its final stages of production

Fornasetti fabric is woven in the studio; above, a butterfly print begins to take shape 

A famous fornasetti illustration depicting the face of the sun is carefully applied to the surface of a large tray

The print is applied to the tray and readied for the next steps of production 

In the archive, a fornasetti craftsman inspects the details of a print

An illustration of a hat is carefully looked at through a microscope