In this column, Avotakka’s editorial staff present their favorite products and interior design solutions that have proved functional. Avotakka’s AD Elina Henttonen went through Finnish Design Shop’s collections and chose seven treats for the dining area in her new home.
1. Equal seats for everyone
“In our new home, we will finally have room for a slightly bigger dining table. I want a round table for our dining room. That way, everyone will be able to see each other when they sit down. My other criterion is that the table should not have four legs placed in a rectangular shape, since we should be able to comfortably fit 5 to 6 chairs around it, depending on the number of people present. If the legs are placed too close to the edge of the table, they will always be in someone’s way, so one thick leg in the center of the table is a more practical solution. Sleek chairs offer a nice contrast to Viccarbe’s massive Burin dining table.”
2. Round as a button
“They say you should have a round rug under a round table. This particular rule is a bit tricky for me. I have never had a round table or a round rug prior to this, so it is hard for me to imagine how they would look in the room. Ferm LIVING’s neutral Eternal jute rug blends in seamlessly with virtually everything, making it an easy, timeless choice.
“A neutral jute rug blends in seamlessly with virtually everything, making it an easy, timeless choice.”
The optimal size for the rug is determined by adding 60 to 70 centimeters of space for the chairs to the measurements of the table, so this rug’s 240-centimeter diameter is perfect for the 120-cm table.”
3. Up and down
“GUBI did a great favor to Finnish design culture by starting to produce Paavo Tynell’s luminaires again. The prices of the original Tynells had reached astronomical heights over the years, but I’m willing to save my pennies for GUBI’s version.
This A1965 pendant luminaire is not only beautiful, but also a very practical choice to place over the dinner table. It features a glare-free diffuser and a counterbalanced elevator mechanism that allows you to easily adjust the height of the luminaire, depending on if the table is used for a study session or a party with friends.”
4. President of the fan club speaking
“I have a soft spot for Ilmari Tapiovaara’s chairs. For the past two years, I have used his Domus chair in my home office. I also used to own the Mademoiselle and Crinolette chairs, which I enjoyed for a while but then resold due to lack of space.
Recently, I spotted two 1970s upholstered Lukki chairs that had been thrown away on a trash pallet – an incredibly lucky find. I got permission to pick them up and bought three pre-owned ones for a good price from a recycling group. I plan to upholster them in cognac brown faux leather, so they will probably be the most beautiful dining table chairs in the whole world. I have had my eye out for a sixth chair for some time now to no avail, but I think this new production version could be it.”
5. Do you have a moment to talk about cabinets?
“Warm Nordic’s Be My Guest rattan cabinet has lovely, rounded corners. It would be a good fit for the dining table and chairs, and would also make a great tableware cabinet. I could use it to store napkins, finer cutlery, vases and a couple of candlesticks along with candles. This way, if you feel like celebrating something, the appropriate tableware is already at hand, and even the children can help you set the table for the occasion.
“I could use the rattan cabinet to store napkins, finer cutlery, vases and a couple of candlesticks.”
The color of the piece ties together the black furniture, the jute mat and the cognac leather of the dining chairs. The top of the cabinet is also a great place for displaying decorative objects – or clearing away all the small stuff that inevitably ends up on the table, such as your child’s unfinished craft projects, odd socks, broken toothpicks, hair ties and the charger that always seems to land somewhere else than where you last saw it.”
6. A real eye-catcher
“The round table simply screams for a centerpiece. With its elegant brass details, AYTM’s round Globe vase completes the carefully thought out interior of the dining space. I probably will never be the kind of person who buys a fresh bouquet of flowers for their newly cleaned home every Friday, but luckily the rich selection of dried flowers available solves at least half of this problem.”
7. Almost neon white
“To balance out all the round forms, I am planning to hang pictures on the walls. Their vertical lines will bring structure to the space. Paper Collective’s Composition 03 poster reflects all the shades and shapes of the room in a playful way. A tiny dash of pink heightens the senses, although I do wonder if I should look for another pink accent to amplify the color. We do not really have any white in our house, so all the white details of the piece jump out like neon colors in other settings.”
Avotakka’s AD Elina Henttonen pays little attention to trends or styles in her decorative choices. Her home is a perfect storm of stuffy classic oil paintings, 50s American diner decoration, French factory lighting, cheap Art Deco of the 80s, the antiquities and the modern.
Text: Elina Henttonen Images: Manufacturers