Have a look at a map of Iceland and you will see a small town South of Reykjavik, called Selfoss. Doesn’t sound very interesting? Well, you couldn’t be more wrong! Because in this town there is a very exciting project being undertaken by two very passionate, hard working people.
Selfoss is harbouring a secret of absolute talent, but don’t worry, the secret is out and we can all indulge ourselves and our children in some stunning, Icelandic knitwear, just don’t forget where you heard about Ylur first, as they are about to get very big in 2017!
Once you have seen Ylur’s beautiful knitted garments that founders and owners Fanney and Arnar are working very hard to design and create, you will understand why they are starting 2017 with a bang in Paris when they will attend Playtime Paris! Of course, who wouldn’t want to show off such stunning clothes!
So, I’ve introduced you to some great knitwear over the past few months but what is it about Ylur’s items that make them stand out?
Well, they are made from Alpaca wool! For those of you who have never come across this type of wool before, here are a few reasons why you may just fall in love with it for your little ones:
“All our products are made from silky Alpaca wool. The Alpaca’s incredible softness, combined with strength and durability make it the perfect material for children’s clothing.”
By choosing the Alpaca wool, Ylur stays clear of allergenic and harmful materials. The mild colours and timeless design make up lovely, long-lasting clothes, perfect for passing on to siblings or even future generations.
I wanted to find out more about Fanney and Arnar, the people behind the name, and they were kind enough to take time out of their extremely busy schedule to speak with me.
Hi guys, really lovely to talk with you. Firstly, we need to know if our readers all over Europe, USA and beyond can get hold of Ylur?
We have been attracting some attention from abroad, mostly from Europe and USA, but our main market is still in Iceland. Our products are available in five shops around Iceland, one in London and one in Hørsholm, Denmark. Then there is www.ylur.is our online store, and we ship worldwide.
That’s good to know! Does all the hard work and magic happen from your home?
Our home is also our workshop, we don’t have an actual physical store but we love having people over that want to look at our products and see how we work. We knit the main pieces in a manual knitting machine and then sew them together by hand. There is also a lot of handknitting involved and because every piece of clothing is handled many times by each of us, by the time it is finished, we have developed a bond of some sort with each and every item.
That is incredible craftsmanship! Where did this passion for creating come from?
YLUR was created in 2013 by Fanney Svansdóttir after the birth of her daughter, Rán. Fanney, who has always been creative, began to express her desire to design and create beautiful garments through knitting. Inspired by her grandmother, Fanney is carrying out the legacy of a long line of Icelandic women who have handcrafted garments for their families for centuries. Fanney’s grandmother; Fanney Jónsdóttir, always had several projects going at any given time.
So, this is a gift that you (Fanney) were born with as opposed to studying to achieve it?
Yes, it just happened naturally. Someone close to me saw Rán wearing one of my designs and then asked me if I could make one for their child. I guess things just evolved from there to where we are now.
You both work almost in sync with each other! How does it work out living and working together?
We actually got married this Autumn so we are business partners and a married couple at the same time!
Fanney, I can see that your nan was a real inspiration to you, only in your work or also in life?
She was an inspiration in all aspects of life. She was incredibly talented and hard working and taught me many things that I benefit from when designing and creating garments.
I get the sense that your motivation is your art rather than business and you seem to be emotionally attached to what you create and conscious of how you create it?
Yes, We don’t actually do seasonal collections, we are a slow fashion brand and we are trying to let things just flow naturally, day to day. We manufacture all our products ourselves from our home in Selfoss and we try our hardest to be as environmentally conscious as possible and our goal is to create garments that are practical, sustainable and not dependent on fashion trends or gender roles.
Thank you for letting us into your world of Ylur! We are excited to see what 2017 has in store for you!
Sarah is a 36 years old British mum to 4 daughters, a blogger on IG @the_wormcatcher, a freelance writer for various online magazines and has just finished her debut crime fiction novel 'A Presence of Absence' which is a mix of Nordic noir and brit crime. So watch this space!
Completely in love with all Nordic genres from literary to film, design to food and music to clothes (for Kids) Sarah loves researching and writing about Nordic talents.
Having 4 daughters she is constantly inspired to dress them in Nordic kid's fashion and will now share this with us!
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