About a month ago I was contacted by an old school mate who is nowadays living in Raanujärvi, which is about 60km west of here. She pretty much knocked me out when she asked if I would be interested in going to the Hankyu department store indoor Christmas Market in Osaka this year. I went: "WHAT? " and she calmly replies "Yes, in Osaka, Japan, they might like to see your shawls there."
By now I have to tell you this is no ordinary Lappish school mate from wayback wayback when. The friend who was calling was Katsumi, a Japanese woman about my age who had met her Finnish husband while living in Japan, and they had decided to come see about a life in Lapland as their studies ended over there. As if that wasn't bad-ass enough they decided to settle in the small village of Raanujärvi (also happens to be where my father-in-law grew up) and start building their own house from scratch.
By now, they have settled with kids and are working on some very interesting craft, wood and snow related projects themselves. Katsumi blogs about her life over here and has had a book publised on her blog , if you're interested in learning more she runs a homestay at Raanujärvi village school for which the website is here. (Japanese only, sorry).
Well, talking to Katsumi, things led from one thing to another, and to make a long story short I will be representing Lapland in Osaka. And I'm so stoked about it I don't think it'll fully hit me til I'm on the plane!!
There will be six ladies from different parts of Finland there, alternating weeks, and apparently the Finnish Christmas market is the cornerstone of setting the Christmas mood for the customers of Hankyu.
In addition to selling my products I have the privilege doing a daily workshop for the duration of my stay (Dec 8-15). So if you're round Osaka in December, please stop by! We will be making hand knitted bracelets and necklaces suitable for men and women alike at the Hankyu Christmas market;)
With me to Osaka I am taking what I've started calling my Osaka series, a collection of wool shawls, hand knitted roving beanies to match and assorted wool accessories.
Will surely be posting more shots of these on my Instagram feed in the coming month. Stay tuned!