The Weavers of Lapua

By Sandra Henderson / Published by Alpine Modern
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More than a hundred years ago, the great-grandfather of Jaana Hjelt’s husband, Esko, opened a wool and felt boot factory in Lankilankoski, Finland, where the Ostrobothnian winters are freezing cold.
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Still in family hands, Lapuan Kankurit today values responsible and environment-friendly processes and pure natural materials. Multifunctionality of their products is important to owners and forth-generation weavers Jaana and Esko Hjelt. In their book, blankets can also be tablecloths or space dividers. Their high-quality textiles are made to bring beauty and happiness into a family’s everyday life for generations.

Lapuan Kankurit Corona Uni poncho 

Lapuan Kankurit Corona Uni poncho 

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy
Lapuan Kankurit Keto blanket and Corona Uni hot-water bottles 

Lapuan Kankurit Keto blanket and Corona Uni hot-water bottles 

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy

Lapuan Kankurit’s fine wool products weave together the story of Finnish handicraft traditions, innovative techniques, and the artwork of top Scandinavian designers. And so the legend continues.

A weaver at the Lapuan Kankurit factory 

A weaver at the Lapuan Kankurit factory 

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy

A Conversation with Jaana Hjelt

Jaana and Esko Hjelt, fourth generation weavers and owners of Lapuan Kankurit 

Jaana and Esko Hjelt, fourth generation weavers and owners of Lapuan Kankurit 

bPhoto: Lapuan Kankurit Oy/b

Born: 1968 in Lapua, Finland. 

Lives: After studying and working in other cities for ten years, I came back to Lapua. 

Work: I do what I love. I run a weaving mill—Lapuan Kankurit ("Weavers of Lapua")—with my husband, Esko. 

Fun: I love to just stay at home with the children, to spend time without any timetables. But we all also love to travel and meet new people. That’s what I do for fun and for work! 

Working on right now: Now it’s the "exhibition season," which means traveling around Europe and attending fairs. It’s great to show our latest collection and hear the feedback. 

Favorite place in the world: Home. This may sound boring, but because of my busy life as an entrepreneur, weekends at home are the best. Saturday evenings at home with family: good food, sauna, sitting, and talking with the kids about all the joys and sorrows of the past week.

Lapuan Kankurit Misteli series 

Lapuan Kankurit Misteli series 

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy
Lapuan Kankurit Kaste apron  

Lapuan Kankurit Kaste apron  

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy

Motto: Now it’s a perfect moment. 

Inspiration: My husband, Esko. It’s great to have someone next to you who is seeking innovations. He always gets ideas for textiles, and we share the same passion to create something new and beautiful for homes. Together with our designers, we make a great team.

Lapuan Kankurit Helmi towel, white linen 

Lapuan Kankurit Helmi towel, white linen 

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy

Treasured possession: My grandmother’s handcrafted textiles. 

Never leaves the house without: A smile. What else do you need?

Lapuan Kankurit RUUT tablecloth 

Lapuan Kankurit RUUT tablecloth 

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy

What’s next for Lapuan Kankurit: We also would like to expand a bit more from home textiles towards apparel . . . Our designers have already made some great bags. I just love them and can’t wait for production to start. 

See the beautiful products Jaana and Esko Hjelt are weaving at lapuankankurit.fi. We also sell select Lapuan Kankurit products online and at the Alpine Modern Shop on Pearl Street in Boulder. △

Lapuan Kankurit outlet 

Lapuan Kankurit outlet 

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy
Lapuan Kankurit TAIVAANVALKEAT wool blanket 

Lapuan Kankurit TAIVAANVALKEAT wool blanket 

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy
Lapuan Kankurit Corona Uni scarf 

Lapuan Kankurit Corona Uni scarf 

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy
Himmelist Eija Koski for Lapuan Kankurit. Vähäkyrö, Finland 

Himmelist Eija Koski for Lapuan Kankurit. Vähäkyrö, Finland 

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy
Lapuan Kankurit Corona pillows 

Lapuan Kankurit Corona pillows 

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy
Lapuan Kankurit Usva Mesi and Corona Uni 

Lapuan Kankurit Usva Mesi and Corona Uni 

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy
Lapuan Kankurit Siru towel 

Lapuan Kankurit Siru towel 

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy
Lapuan Kankurit Usva tablecloth and Poro towel 

Lapuan Kankurit Usva tablecloth and Poro towel 

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy
Lapuan Kankurit KOIRAPUISTO wool blanket 

Lapuan Kankurit KOIRAPUISTO wool blanket 

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy
Lapuan Kankurit Kaarna scarf and Iida pocket shawl 

Lapuan Kankurit Kaarna scarf and Iida pocket shawl 

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy
Lapuan Kankurit Misteli blankets 

Lapuan Kankurit Misteli blankets 

Photo: Lapuan Kankurit Oy

Alpine Modern

@alpine_modern

Alpine Modern is a design and lifestyle brand based in Boulder, Colorado. Our story begins in 2013, when we opened the Alpine Modern Shop in downtown Boulder. From there, we dreamed big and created a beautiful quarterly print magazine about architecture, design and elevated living in the mountains around the world. Alpine Modern Issue 01 launched in November of 2014. We opened our first Alpine Modern Café in Boulder in August 2015 with the desire to create a physical space for the community to gather for a new elevated experience. Today, you can also shop thoughtfully curated products from known modern design brands as well as small maker labels at our Alpine Modern online shop at https://www.alpinemodern.com. Building on the love we received from readers of our printed magazine, we launched Alpine Modern Editorial (alpinemodern.com/editorial) this spring, where we continue to publish "slow content" about incredible cabins and splendid mountain homes, interviews with architects and designers, portraits of makers in the mountains, and musings on walks in the woods and alpine cooking ingredients. We are sharing with you a selection of Alpine Modern stories and Curations here at Dwell.com. Say hello to Alpine Modern via concierge@alpinemodern.com or talk to us on social media, where you find us under @alpinemodern.

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