January Pattern – Moonglo

We start our focus on historic iconic Formica® Laminate Patterns by going back to the beginning. Moonglo represents the very first pattern created in partnership with a designer.

Formica Moonglo Samples in Four Colors

Morris B Sanders, the designer of Moonglo, was inspired by the moon’s light reflected on the surface of water. He saw waves and ripples – sometimes angular, sometimes soft – and used that inspiration to help Formica Group launch the Moonglo patterned laminate in six colours in 1948.

While some may consider this the first pattern launched by Formica Group, that’s not entirely true. Of course, the product was initially used as a substitute for the mineral mica in electronic components, which is how the surface got its name. But by the 1920s, the material was found to offer a durable solution to clad popular products such as radios. While black and brown were first used on the radio exteriors, a dark woodgrain would later follow and could be considered the first “pattern.”

From there, a green marble laminate was used on soda fountains, followed by Realwood, Pearl and Linen. But by the 1940s, Morris B Sanders was making a name for himself as the designer of one of New York City’s first modernist townhouses, followed by an exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art (MOMA) in 1946. Formica capitalised on his popularity by working with him to create Moonglo – officially the first pattern developed in partnership with a designer, and the rest, as they say, is history.


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