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A collection where textile and ceramics meet

Lena Mäcs lives in Insjön and is the fashion designer who became a ceramicist. She has made a fantastic ceramics collection inspired by our classic patterns. The products are sold in our store in Insjön as well as in NK, Stockholm. 

Hi Lena! Tell us about yourself and your background.

I was born and raised in Tunsta, a village that’s a part of Insjön and Dalarna County. In the 80s I moved to Stockholm to study fashion and design at Beckmans College of Design.

After my graduation I worked as a freelance designer both internationally and for Swedish clothing companies. In 2017 I felt that I wanted to try something new and started studying ceramics in Leksand. It was a fantastic education and today I work as a fulltime ceramicist in my studio in Insjön. To go from fashion design to ceramics was both a small and big step. The design process is the same, but the technique is different and it’s fascinating to shape it with your own hands.

I also work with other materials parallel to the ceramics. I design and manufacture jewellery and accessories that’s also inspired by my background and sometimes I still work with clothing design.

How would you describe your style?

My style is direct and intuitive. It’s important that my pieces are tactile – you should be able to feel them both with your fingers and your mind. Size, proportion and the end finish is really important. The material I work with is stoneware and I develop my own glazes. I experiment and fire my pottery several times which contribute to the uniqueness of each object.

The thought behind the collection for Insjöns Väveri is that it, unlike my other collections, should be clearly inspired by Dalarna but still reflect my own style. Each small bowl and vase should have its own soul and expression. When you buy something, I’ve created I want you to feel that no one else has this particular piece that you own.

What do you associate with Insjöns Väveri?

The weavery has always been there and is a natural part of Insjön. I worked there during summers in the 80s when I studied at Beckmans. There were busloads of people that went there to buy something nice for their loved ones, gifts for weddings, graduation presents or for themselves. The quality and tradition were well-known. I think I still know every single name of the tablecloths.

What did the process behind the collection look like?

It was important to me that the ceramics would feel like Åhl (Insjön). Although it’s in my genes I started doing thorough research. The first thing I did was to go to the weavery to soak up the atmosphere, look at different set-ups and areas of use. I gathered photos from Åhl and the local folk costume, looked at traditional paintings, textiles, and folk paintings from Dalarna. The style here in Dalarna is quite rustic which I like very much.

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