Love for handicrafts broke visitor record at Finnish Craft & Design Fair | Suomen Kädentaidot
Finnish Craft & Design
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Love for handicrafts broke visitor record at Finnish Craft & Design Fair

Press release  19.11.2019

15–17th of November the Tampere Exhibition and Sports Centre attracted 55 436 handicraft enthusiasts during the 3-day Finnish Craft & Design Fair. That makes 4 440 more visitors than last year – a record year too. Next year, the happening will celebrate its 25-year anniversary. The festive themes will be skill, handy crafters and artfully crafted designs.

– The success of the Fair and the fabulous visitor numbers confirm earlier research data, stating that handicraft and diy boost our well-being and act as a counterbalance to this modern society’s rat race. The event confirms the Finnish craft & design tradition. Its stresses the importance of diy and ethically manufactured Finnish products. We respect the old, while constantly creating something new. Doing things together, a good atmosphere and the importance of crafts & design resonated through the exhibition centre these three days, says project manager and HR-manager of the Tampere Trade Fairs concern Jasmin Saadetdin-Rikkinen.

A range of competitions and acknowledgements form an important part of representing the craft & design industry. This year the Taito-Finlandia -award went to costume designer Pirjo Valinen, known for her paper costumes. Other finalists were art historian Mari Varonen, ceramist Risto Paatero, goldsmith and designer Petri Pulliainen, and textile entrepreneur Paapii Design.

The Artesan of the Year 2019-award went to Jenni Vanhanen for her rya rug designing programme. The other two finalists were glass jewelry design student Sari Roivas and carpenter Jarno Nikander. Winner of the Novelty Product of the Finnish Craft and Design Fair are Vuonue’s plasticless sock yarns Pentti and Wilhelmi.

2020 celebrations dedicated to skill

Finnish Craft & Design will fill the exhibitions centre again next year from 13-15th November 2020. According to Saadetdin-Rikkinen, during the anniversary year, skill and skillfulness will be especially highlighted.

– Skill and skillfulness are this fair’s key concepts. There wouldn’t be Finnish Craft and Design without the incredibly gifted craft entrepreneurs, who exhibit at the fair. Equally important are our visitors, who come to buy unique artisan products. Together they form the base of our anniversary theme.

Two new competitions for the fair: Finnish Sock knitting Championships and Handmade future

Knitting needles jingle against the clock on Sunday, 15th November 2020, during the Finnish Sock knitting Championships at the Finnish Craft & Design Fair. Contestants knit or crochet one sock within a time frame and receive points for speed, style, artistic influence and technical achievement.

– We’re absolutely thrilled about getting to organize the Finnish Sock knitting Championships 2020 together with the Finnish Craft & Design Fair. It will be the third time we organize the event and the fair’s anniversary atmosphere will make a fantastic setting for this wonderful competition, says Jaakko Mattila, owner of the Koukuttava Kässä-Pussi store in Orimattila.

In honor of the upcoming anniversary year, we also recently launched the Handmade future competition. The finalists’ works will be on display during the Finnish Craft & Design fair and the award ceremony will be on the opening day 13th November 2020. The competition is organized together with the Association of Craft Teachers TOL ry and the Association of technology teachers TAO ry. You can find the competition rules on the Association of Craft Teachers’ website.

The Finnish Craft and Design Fair, held for the 24th time, is the largest fair in the arts and crafts industry in Europe, with over 700 exhibitors and approximately 50 000 visitors each year. Tampereen Messut Oy and Taito Pirkanmaa ry co-organize the Finnish Craft and Design Fair.