Today I'm promoting a little shop in Finland.
My name is Eva Kyrklund and I'm 40 years young. I live in Finland, east of Helsinki, in the archipelago of Pellinge, the birthplace of Tove Janssons Moomin-characters (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moomin).
It's a beautiful area surrounded by the sea, with long traditions with fishing & building boats. Busy area in the summer with summer guests, calm and quiet out of season.
My mother tongue is Swedish, and approx 6% of the population in Finland speak it as well, but the majority speaks Finnish. Quite a few street signs are found to be in both languages, especially along the coast.I grew up living in Helsinki, but got fed up with the busy city life a few years ago, and moved close to nature and the sea, without the sea I cannot live...
I've always had a passion for creating & exploring things, and I guess it was quite clear that creativity was my future.
My mother was born in 1932 and I grew up hearing stories from the war, how she was sent to Sweden away from the war, and her fascination for magazines about Hollywood film stars. When ever there was an old movie on TV we watched it, everything from musicals to Alfred Hitchcock.
My father moved to Italy and remarried when I was quite young, but me and my sisters visited him quite frequently. He knew quite a lot about history, so we drove around quite a lot south of Rome visiting historical places that I had read about in my Latin class...
At our summer cottage our neighbour had a little farm with chicken, goats, geese and sheep. I was petrified by the aggressive geese but I loved the sheep. There was one lamb that got rejected by it's ewe, it was named Neiti Sievänen ("Miss Cutie"), and I got to feed her with a bottled. She was very affecionate, but it turned out she had leukemia, so she had a short life. This lamb left a deep trace in my memory, and I have loved sheep ever since - hence the choice of material for my creations... I have a diploma in Crafts and Design since 1997, and took some additional studies recently, specializing in wool as a material.
The name of my shop, "Villa Ylle" is based on a play on words, in Finnish it means "wear wool" and in Swedish "villa wool". I get inspired my vintage movies that are beautiful scenes of craftsmanship and ideas, as well by the archipelago, it's wooden cottages superstitions and traditions. Nostalgia i general... Besides making and selling products I teach crafts too, mainly for adults.
I know nothing worse than poor quality and it upsets me every time I've bought something that doesn't last...That's why I take pride in making durable products, all felted products are wet felted with soap and water.
My greatest drive is curiosity, I love to explore new possibilities and materials. Thanks to my students who ask me a lot of questions I discover new possibilities within my area. And there's nothing more rewarding than a satisfied student & customer!
I've ended up doing quite a lot of volunteer work too for the local homestead farm society, but it seems to pay off in the long run, you get new connections and possibilities that way too.. The society's page www.pellinge.net/phf/phfeng.htm
To quote my favourite author:
“Love. Fall in love and stay in love. Write only what you love, and love what you write. The key word is love. You have to get up in the morning and write something you love, something to live for.”