Somewhere in the wonderful landscape of Finland you can find not only Moomins, but also other beautiful creatures and magical things like drops, clouds or rabbits. More precisely you can find them by EK for Kids, a brand for unique and cute objects for our little ones.
Today I have the pleasure to introduce you the founder and owner of EK for kids – Emilia Åman.
Emilia is 36 years old, married to Joni Åman and mother of two kids Robi (11) and Milana (7). She is designer, graduated from Savonia University of Applied Sciences, in 2006. When you ask her about her hobbies, she would definitely say and laugh – “I’ve started to bake again after a long pause. Last I made a blueberry pie and berry kissel. This autumn I’ve also started to play badminton with my husband. Badminton is a good sport to decrease stress” But not only baking makes Emilia smile and feeling happy. She loves the four seasons in Finland, especially when winter turns into spring. Now the fall is turning into winter and snow is slowly raining behind her window.
The most important for Emilia is her family and vacations together, the best time in the year is Christmas, of course, when she spends time with her family after the busy December.
Her favorite place in the city is the Kuopio harbour, because it is the best place to be. Mostly during summer time of course. There is a big market place and a Wine Festival held in Jyly, and ships that go for an 2-hour cruises across the Kallavesi lake.
There are many places to visit in Finland. It is a wonderful country! If you don’t find Emilia there, search in all the warm places, like in the south of France, because she really liked Nice, when they stopped there during the UEFA Euro Championship in 2016. And after holidays in France it is nice to be home again and to relax on the new sofa, that is so big that the whole family fits to it (including their cat called Maradonna). This is the best place to enjoy some favorite songs. Maybe Lady Gaga’s and Bradley Cooper’s “Shallow” or one of her favorite musicals like “The Sound of Music” while admiring the fresh tulips in the vase next to sofa.
Photo credit: @EK for kids – Emilia Åman
How did you get the idea of creating your own family company?
After graduated I got a job in a multinational clothing-retail company where I worked as a store Visual Merchandiser. I saw the fast-fashion industry very nearby and felt like this is not a place for me or my ideology. I got two children and started to find furniture to my kids room. After not finding the one I wanted I started to design my own, with help of my husband. First I made Piilopaikka-teepee (Piilopaikka means hiding place), then the house bed and later Rabbit Chair came to life. This way the EK for kids was born. I shared pictures of my products in social media and soon I had orders coming in. I had to give up my day job and started as an entrepreneur in 2017.
Why a bunny chair? Is there a special story about it?
Bunnies have always been very inspirational animals to me. I used to have a bunny shaped pillow as a cuddly toy when I was a kid. Without that toy I wouldn’t go anywhere. When in school I used to draw bunnies even made a bunny from clay. Bunnies bring me joy and comfort! The first sketch from The Rabbit Chair is from year 2017 drawn with black pen beside A4 sheet.
Photo credit: @EK for kids – first sketch of the bunny chair
Photo credit: @EK for kids – the bunny chair with Emilia’s daughter (left), Emilia with the bunny cuddle toy (right)
Where do you get your inspiration?
The best moment to create something new is to listen to good music, having no rush to anywhere and lots of empty paper and sharpened pens around you. I get inspired by different kind of color combinations in nature and in cities and stores. I also like to touch different kind of surfaces and textures.
The journey from a sketch to a fully ready product is usually very long. The first “round” of the Rabbit chairs are now sold out and the next one is coming. Product design is an on-going process, so there are going to be some changes in next chairs too. The new Rabbit Chair is ready to travel long journeys, so it goes into a flat package. Maybe some new colors are coming too, laughing.
Is there a nice story connected with EK for kids you would like to share with us?
My daughter has been modeling for me for many years and always it has been a struggle to get her to stand still. The last pictures we took in a beautiful kids room that my relative had been renovated. All the pictures had to take in a hurry, cause my daughter couldn’t think anything else, but just WHEN she finally can eat the muffins that were on display, laughing.
Photo credit: @EK for kids – the bunny chairs & table with Emilia’s daughter Milana
What do you wish for you and EK for kids in the coming years?
I hope I can design more and more new beautiful, timeless and long-lasting furniture for kid’s room. All kids needs a good design, right?
Thank you dear Emilia for this wonderful interview, funny insights and interesting story behind EK for kids.
We wish you all the best for the future sending you a lot of sunny greetings from France.
Arminka aka Petit Sourire
In collaboration with EK for kids