ITEM: Where do you get inspiration for design, colors and new items?
AH: I follow design medias, magazines and blogs. We also find inspiration and ideas from different design fairs, such as Stockholm Furniture Fair and Milan Furniture Fair. I never use trend forecasts, but base my decisions in everything I see and experience, both in real life and in design medias.
ITEM: How does the new collection take shape?
AH: I usually think about what we need and what we don’t have in our current selection of furniture. Sometimes we find designers who have already created items that are perfect for our collection, and sometimes the design process is much more time-consuming. Luckily we have the privilege to work with very talented people, both designers and craftsmen.
When creating new sofas, my father and I are a great team. He has worked his whole life with upholstered furniture, and I complement his knowledge of structure and form with my design expertise. When we work together, I always learn new things from him, just like he learned from his father.
ITEM: How do you know what the customers want next?
AH: A few years ago, we started to sell the Hakola collection in our own webshop. This has resulted in direct customer response, as we are in contact with our clients ourselves, not through a retailer. We get a lot of feedback, and I always use that feedback as the starting point when designing new products and collections. Functionality, comfort and ease of care are the most important aspects when choosing new furniture. In addition to great design of course!
ITEM: How do the craftsmen of Hakola influence the design process of new furniture?
AH: When the design is ready on paper, a whole new phase begins. The carpenters, upholsterers and seamstresses have an essential role in the process. Designers and craftsmen work together to create quality furniture, where the construction of the frame is equally important to the color and appearance of the finished product.
With all this heritage and skill, Hakola is now known for great design, commitment and superior quality.
Words: Essi Rämä
Photography: Riitta Sourander