As Patternsfrom Agency is celebrating its 1st anniversary as a design agency in March, it is good timing to look back and see what has brought us here. After all, we do have quite a long history behind, which dates back to 2012. Enjoy reading!
Patternsfrom Agency today is pretty much a result of hard work of us, agent sisters Kristiina Tergujeff and Jenni Moberg. As friends since childhood, we had been following each others professional development: Kristiina studied textile design and was working for retail business of home textiles whereas Jenni had been exporting Finnish design as a design agent and entrepreneur. As former Girl Scouts, finally in 2012, we decided to take real actions to investigate the possibilities to support Finnish textile designers. The journey had begun.
Our first project idea was to hook up Finnish textile designers with Russian textile manufacturers. People living in North-Western parts of Russia are familiar with Nordic style due to traveling in Finland, we assumed. Also, those manufacturers could possibly work as subcontractors for Finnish textile brands. We searched and received external financing, and launched Projekt Posadka with a session with 22 participants in January 2014. Out of those participants we found the first designers and portfolios with which we approached the manufacturers.
During Project Posadka we studied simultaneously also the expectations of the designers: if we would launch a design agency at some point, would there be interest among designers to it? What services are needed the most? What could be an additional service?
Quite soon we realized that the agency needed some branding. Also, due to sudden political turmoil in Russia, it was better to concentrate on other markets. In March 2015 we launched our own website with brand Patterns from Finland.
Patterns from Finland -era
With the new brand we were eager to conquer the world! Already in the summer 2015 Patterns from Finland made its first international appearance at Nordic Buzz fair, which was organized jointly with Formland fair in Herning, Denmark. Soon after we were in Moscow, Tokyo and Frankfurt presenting Finnish textile design for various home textile professionals. Oh the joy of meeting our first real customers!
We had also national appearances. People could enjoy our patterns at a startup event Slush Helsinki and light art festival Lux Helsinki. We organized a pattern making workshop in Helsinki there anyone could be a designer.
As we were aware of the importance of an IPR strategy, we created one for Patterns from Finland. Very soon we realized that major re-branding is needed, as our application for a EU-trademark did not go through. How to utilize the homepage patternsfrom.fi and still be different from the other Finnish design studios?
Patternsfrom Agency was born
The Patternsfrom Agency brand was launched at Heimtextil 2017. That same year we launched our three pattern concepts and the very first trend estimation. The concepts Classy, Lovely and Whimsical get new mood boards and color charts every year for us being able to provide coherent patterns fitting upcoming trends.
Based on our discussions with the customers, we kept delivering production ready pdf-data files. As our designers do not use element banks, each pattern is unique. The patterns are designed to one of the three pattern concepts in sets of three patterns. We can provide cost efficient solutions for exclusive patterns, as our customers choose their market and product category in which they use the pattern.
As an agency, we do not sell only single patterns, but we are capable to coordinate bigger collections, even with a short notice, as we have a nice stock of patterns already. Likewise, we can coordinate color palettes to fit the upcoming trends in home textile industry. We have references from brands around the world selling bedding, curtains, tablecloths, wallpapers etc.
Designers and trainees
Without great designers we would not exist. Currently we have ten designers in our roster: Ilana Vähätupa has been there during the Projekt Posadka times. The others are Ammi Lahtinen, Hanna Ruusulampi, Maria Tolvanen, Tanja Kallio, Tiina Taivainen, Noora Hattunen, Miira Zukale, Anna Kuukka and Nonodd Design Studio. We appreciate highly the professionalism of Kahandi Design, Sari Taipale, Nina Ruokonen and Johanna Rautiainen, who have been our clients before, but have chosen to move forward, and search challenges outside of our agency.
As there are much more talents out there that we can have in our agency, we have offered a possibility for some designers to join us to various trade fairs. This service is not only for the fair appearance, but the designers get support to find their own style and latest home textile trends. Ari Kostamo, Johanna Rautiainen, Nonodd Design Studio, Miia Kajaani, Outi Santaniemi, Eva Rahikainen, Mari Suhonen, Elina Malmberg and Suvi Pouttu have all trusted us to sell their pattern design services.
We organize portfolio reviews for designers on a regular basis, and have met 33 designers in them. Based on the portfolios and the general feeling, we invite people to join the agency either as a visiting designer for a certain trade fair, or for a permanent position.
Even if we have not been searching for trainees actively, we have had a possibility to work with some. Students of Metropolia University of Applied Sciences Katariina Hannukainen and Marke Hongisto have been truly helpful addition. Also Moemi Matsuoka and Haruka Aoki from Fukuoka Women’s University have done their part for making customers to understand Patternsfrom Agency in Japan.
Exhibitions and events
During the years we have been exhibiting at 15 international trade shows. Our annual appearances are at Heimtextil and Japantex, with the third trade show varying year by year. Besides of these we take actively part into events that fit our busy calendars and we consider interesting. Such events include keynote speaker sessions, the very first Ommel-fair with our test lot of fabrics as well as decorating bowls for Empty Bowl -event.
We are looking forward to see a bright future ahead of us! We continue with our chosen path to be an open and trustworthy agency. Our aim is to deliver its best for both the designers and the customers.