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Lapuan Kankurit Akira Minagawa
Lapuan Kankurit KESAKUKKA tablecloth-blanket and towel napkin-turquoise
Lapuan Kankurit METSALAMPI towel white-green-rainy blue


It all started with a Finnish jacket. Akira Minagawa, known for his brand minä perhonen, had his life’s course changed forever after one innocuous purchase in Rovaniemi nearly four decades ago. The jacket he found in a local store became a symbol of the kind of designs Akira wanted to aim for: not high fashion, but quality craftsmanship for the everyday life.
– While walking alone in the extremely cold cities of Lapland, I was touched by the kindness of the people and learned about the beauty of everyday design, Akira reveals.

Akira’s style is often described with words such as romantic, naive and imaginative. Akira himself doesn’t submit to a particular style – to him, everything starts with his own memories, which he wishes to bring to life.
– I create with the feeling that I am bringing the fantasies in my mind out of my hands and into the real world.

Jaana Hjelt, the co-owner of Lapuan Kankurit, has admired the Japanese designer for years.
– As soon as we chose playfulness as this spring’s theme, mina perhonen came to my mind. His style fits perfectly with its cheery and colourful tones – it’s just what the world could
use more of right now.

Akira’s designs for Lapuan Kankurit, METSÄLAMPI and KESÄKUKKA are exactly that: whimsical designs full of colour and joy. The more abstract of the two, METSÄLAMPI (“forest pond”), which represents the Finnish landscape with its bountiful forests, mountains and bodies of water, was conceived a day before his visit to Lapua.
– For some reason, the picture of a forest and a lake divided into two parts, with straight lines representing trees and curved lines representing water, suddenly came to me. It was a coincidence that a simple picture of water gushing from a mountain came into being, but it was a moment that made my heart dance.

The gorgeous KESÄKUKKA (“summer flower”) is a testament to Akira’s wonderously vivid imagination. The design features an imaginary flower he painted while picturing it blooming casually and happily on the streets of Finland.

Both Akira and Jaana are happy with the collaboration.
– Good things cannot be created without trusting each other through empathy and respect. These are two important elements that have allowed us to quickly become comfortable with each other and trust each other. That makes me happy, Akira says. Jaana’s answer echoes with the same sentiments.
– We immediately felt a kinship with him, seeing how incredibly passionate he is about his work. As he said so himself after our first meeting: it feels like we’ve been friends for a long time already, she shares.

It has been many years since Akira’s first, fateful trip to Finland that started him on a path filled with awards, acclaimed collaborations and global renown. And still today, it is possible to pass Akira by in Finland, even perhaps while he’s waiting for a train to take him back to
– Since the first visit Finland has been like home to me, and a place where I can always return to rest my mind.


Text Jenna Suomela Photo minä perhonen / Katja Lösönen

KESÄKUKKA linen tablecloth - blanket | Lapuan Kankurit

METSÄLAMPI towel | Lapuan Kankurit





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