Designer spotlight: Saana ja Olli

Designer in de schijnwerpers. Omdat we het leuk vinden om af en toe iemand in het zonnetje te zetten. En omdat we trots zijn op de ontwerpers en bedrijven waarmee we samenwerken. Omdat ze zulke mooie dingen maken en ontwerpen en ecogewijs zo lekker bezig zijn. Vandaag Saana ja Olli.

We love putting the spotlight on people whose work or talent we admire. Because we love working with them, because they make beautiful stuff and have eco minds. Today it's Saana ja Olli time.

tell us a little bit about yourself

We met in forest festival in summer of 2004 and started dating. During the years we both ended studying textile design and in autumn 2008 we decided to design a pattern together. We both have quite different aesthetics that we do, but from the beginning our collaborative design process started working really well. We got really good feedback from our first products and decided to continue working together as Saana ja Olli.

This has been an interesting journey.

the products you design are made locally and as ecofriendly as possible. It's not always easy to find ecofriendly solutions, have you encountered difficulties? And why is it important to you to do it the green way?

In the beginning we made a lot of detective work to find the closest sources for first quality hemp fabrics. It took 9 months and many, many turns to find best and closest manufacturers. We also tried many sewing places in the beginning. Now it's great that we know and can trust the quality of our subcontractors, and things work really well. 

From the beginning we wanted to keep our production transparent and as close as possible. We got bored of companies using sweatshop labor in their production and pretending to be ethical, and wanted to exercise our right to do things differently. 

We enjoy living in Finland and have got free education, health care and stable infrastructure from our native country, so we wanted to employ local professionals rather than produce our products in some distant single-party dictatorship. 

When you know who makes your products and that they get proper wage and benefits from their work, you can be proud of your work and respect yourself. It's everyone's duty to act in a way that preserves biodiverse world for the coming generations.

your new collection Maailman synty is inspired by the Finnish wallrug tradition, please tell us more

We have been fans of Finnish wallrugs for many years, especially the more avantgarde ones with simple patterns and structures. Wallrugs are high quality craft and time-consuming to make, so we wanted to bring their aesthetics into a different and a more affordable screen-printed form. 

what is your ultimate dream for the future?

To be free and and to be still able to make a living out of our own design work. We enjoy modest and simple life. 

is there anything else you would like to share with us?

Have a great winter!