“Restrictions and limitations are equals to possibilities and opportunities”, says Lars Beller Fjetland. While choosing his favorite gifts from Finnish Design Shop, he felt like creating some ground rules and decided to focus on gifts that cost 250 € or less. “Some new, some old, and some less expected ones!”
Hello Lars! What have you been up to lately?
“I became a father again in August, so I have had my hands full ever since. Travel restrictions made it possible for me to spend a lot more time with my family, which has been a real treat. It has also allowed me to really focus on research related to interesting materials and manufacturing techniques for new and ongoing projects.
There has been a steady supply of briefs and request, so I consider myself privileged to come out of this situation in good shape. A lot of projects are in the pipe-line at various stages of completion, and I’m sure that some of these will be launched next year. My studio is celebrating its 10-year anniversary in 2021, so I’m working on something special to celebrate this.”
Do you have any Christmas traditions?
“Having a Norwegian father and German mother has had a big impact on our Christmas traditions. We sort of cherrypicked the best of both worlds, added some new elements and ran with it. It was perfect.
Being at the point where I have my own little family, we mainly focus on creating our own traditions, still carrying on the very best elements from both family branches. The current situation will have an effect on our celebration, but we will still find a way of creating a lot of hygge in cozy Bergen. Finding and chopping down our own Christmas tree, fire in the fireplace, good company, lots of delicious food and wine and, if we are really lucky, we get some much sought-after snow.”
What’s the best gift you’ve ever received?
“This is, as you already know, an impossible question to answer! This being said, I recently received my very own one-of-a-kind, hand painted Kokeshi doll from Sketch Inc that was painted to look like me. It was commissioned and given to me by Roger Wall, the CEO of Spinneybeck.
I had no idea, so I completely cracked up in laughter when I unwrapped a doll size version of myself. The details were just spot on. Working on the KIN collection for Architectmade, I became quite obsessed with traditional Kokeshi dolls. Roger had noticed my infatuation with this tradition and wasted no time on reaching out to the right people who made it happen.
In a world where everything is instantly available by the click of a button, it stands out as the perfect gift: unique, thoughtful and completely hilarious.”
Gift picks by Lars Beller Fjetland:
Pidät: Bird Silo feeder
“This ingenious bird feeder is designed by the amazingly talented and oh-so-friendly people at Studio Tolvanen. There is almost something poetic about the concept of choosing a waste material that is a direct threat to all birds and turning it into something that nourishes them instead. I love eating breakfast while watching our neighborhood birds having a sunflower seed feast in the garden.”
The Wrong Shop: Poster
“The Wrong Shop offers high-quality prints and posters from some of the most relevant and imaginative designers and artists in their fields. Why not replace that tired, old IKEA poster with something that actually stimulates your mind and imagination?”
Georg Jensen: Bernadotte thermo jug
“This is quite frankly the ultimate thermo jug. It has an iconic design, perfect function and it is surprisingly durable. It is the only jug that you will ever have to buy, as it will most likely outlast you. Buy right, buy once, buy this. This timeless gem does not have to be hidden away in a cupboard when it is not in use.”
Iittala: The Aalto vase
“I know that this is a well-known classic, but there is a reason why this great piece never goes out of fashion. The Aalto vase is incredibly versatile in its use, and it will immediately elevate any interior with its soft and refined lines. This vase has a permanent place at my dining table, and the only thing that changes is its content. Buy this to a flower lover and they will be eternally grateful.”
Fiskars: Classic scissors
“‘Scissors?’ you might ask. Well, these are not just scissors; they are The Scissors. We all have that one friend or family member with blunt kitchen knives and a drawer full of broken scissors. This is the perfect gift for that special someone. It is one of my all-time favorite utilitarian designs and a must-have for any household.”
Artek: Aalto stool 60
“This icon needs no introduction. No home is complete without a piece from Alvar Aalto, and this stool is a great object to start from. It is in many ways the perfect product, as it offers so much function, visual beauty and, perhaps most importantly, it is built to last. This piece is on my personal wish list this Christmas, so fingers crossed.”
Edit: Design Stories Images: Sjur Pollen and manufacturers