As we worked on the RAND collection, the design team looked to Scandinavian aesthetics for inspiration. We added an urban beat to give a tempo to the collection, and looked closely at the Scandinavian capitals of Stockholm, Oslo, Copenhagen and Helsinki. The clean architecture, the wide horizons, the green oases and the cities’ closeness to water came together in four creative, striped designs which set the tone.
When we created the RAND collection, our aim was to produce a crisp, Scandinavian look which will work well as a base in many homes. The light, clean expression is a common theme, and we have used colours as effectively as possible. Stripes can be used anywhere, from narrow hallways to spacious living rooms. It’s a look where the elegant touch meets modern colourways in tune with the zeitgeist.
Enthusiastic and friendly meetings, laughter and tears of joy – that was the backdrop to our work as we developed the Signatur wallpaper collection. This makes the warmth that greeted the launch of the collection and the work of Joy Zandén, Lillo Wikstrand, Ylva Källström-Eklund and Dagmar Lodén extra special.
Dagmar Lodén (1904-89) was a well-known artist, textile and interior designer. She was a talented painter in oils, with a delicate touch. Jointly with her husband, Kalle Lodén, she received several public commissions in Stockholm in the 1930s. When Kalle died, at the early age of 39, Dagmar moved with their two children and her mother to the town of Leksand in the province of Dalarna, where an artists’ colony had grown up around the Jobs sisters, creators of amazing patterns.
Ylva Källström-Eklund (1933-88) was born in Stockholm. Her father worked as a manager in the pharmacy sector, while her mother was a housewife in the newly-built functional-style family home. Ylva started drawing as a young girl, and submitted her drawings to newspapers and competitions. In the 1950s, she studied at the Beckman School of Advertising and worked as an advertisement artist. This was the time of school band jazz, when young musicians recreated the New Orleans jazz of the 1920s with the enthusiasm of punk rockers. It was the time of batwing chairs, army duffle coats and dreams of Paris.
Lillo Wikstrand (1911-95) was born in Stockholm, but spent her first nine years in India, where her parents worked as missionaries. Lillo’s mother, Gertrud, loved handicrafts and Lillo grew up surrounded by embroidery. Thread yarn was sent from India to Lillo’s aunt, Elisabet Wisén-Jobs, who was famous in Sweden for her flower embroideries. The meadow flowers of Sweden were particularly close to Lillo’s heart. She trained as a physiotherapist, but her passion was embroidery.
Sometimes, good things come out of something gone wrong. When Joy Zandén tried selling her textile patterns in 1950’s New York, no-one showed any interest. As if in an Audrey Hepburn film, she wandered Fifth Avenue, visiting shops with her pattern portfolio, but failed to sell anything.” Very nice, very nice” was all she was told by advertising agencies and boutique staff. What a missed opportunity for the Americans! Joy returned home and the patterns were set aside. It was only 60 years later, when her daughter found the worn tube in her mother’s basement, that the patterns came to light again. Inside the tube, her daughter found an amazing treasure of patterns.
We’re back in Ulricehamn after a fantastic weekend in Copenhagen, with a media viewing and launch party for our latest collection, Familj. The press release party was held at Lisa Grue’s wonderful studio at Köttbyn in Copenhagen.
The home and it´s interior decoration are growing in importance as our reality is becoming increasingly global. But to find one's own expression in today's immense supply can sometimes be quite difficult. Trends come and go, but how do we relate to them?