NK Interior’s design initiative Together, and the associated scholarship, is a central part of the Made in Sweden collaboration and exhibition, which celebrates and highlights the strength of Swedish design, with a focus on sustainability, quality materials, and local production. During Stockholm Design Week 2024, this year’s Together designers will showcase leather items created in collaboration with the historic Tärnsjö Tannery. Designers Lisa Hilland, Pia Wallén, Maxjenny, Anki Gneib, Sami Kallio, Jonas Bohlin and Julie Amira, as well as the 2023 Together scholarship holder Olivia Åhman, have created leather items that will be presented exclusively at NK Interior.

”Together has received an amazing response from both the design industry and the design-minded public. I am thrilled to see how the number of applications for the Together scholarship has skyrocketed”, says Kadi Harjak, CEO of NK Interior and continues:

”It feels very exciting that this year’s collaboration is with one of Sweden’s oldest and most reputable design companies, which in the spirit of Together and Made in Sweden stand for sustainable, local production and Swedish quality of the highest class, I am so grateful for everyone who has been involved in the Together project and the enormous enthusiasm, commitment and joy they have manifested. I hope that the Together project can inspire even more designers and companies to join in to further expand this movement.

Tärnsjö Tannery has a long history dating back to 1873. Today, Tärnsjö is one of the world’s leading providers of vegetable and sustainable tanned leather and represents an outstanding saddlery craftsmanship. As early as 1988, the decision was made to only use vegetable tanning with bark extract and only water-based finishing products. The result of Tärnsjö’s tanning method is a natural product with a beautiful and timeless aesthetic expression that continues to soften and patinate as the years pass. Being part of this year’s Together – which emphasizes sustainable, local production – was a matter of course for Tärnsjö Tannery.

”When NK Interior’s CEO Kadi Harjak contacted us, we were very excited because we have a fully integrated factory in Tärnsjö where everything is produced under one roof. We developed the right leather, colors and the right surface treatments based on the designers’ wishes, and then let our craftsmen manufacture the product in our saddlery. Swedish, sustainable, and locally produced”, says Ulrika Andersson, CEO of Tärnsjö Tannery.

”We believe it is very important to promote and preserve design, production and craftsmanship in Sweden. Therefore, this project was incredibly creative, fun and exciting. The designers have created their objects together with our experienced and knowledgeable craftsmen in our saddlery in Tärnsjö. We also had a close dialogue with the designers and made suggestions regarding leather, color, and surface treatments. This resulted in fantastic pieces of works in beautiful leather and with solid craftsmanship, says Ulrika Andersson.

Participating designers in this year’s Together and the leather items they created together
with Tärnsjö Tannery:

Julie Amira– Grammy
”Grammy is a desk lamp carefully crafted from high-quality leather, inspired by the timeless elegance of the gramophone. The design of the shade, inspired by a simple pattern, emphasizes the stitching work to create this flower shape. This is a detail-orientated product where every stitch has its own importance in creating a quality finished product. The aim is also to showcase the knowledge and craftsmanship, in this case, the skills of Tärnsjö’s saddlers and the beauty and uniqueness of the leatherwork.

To counteract the wear and tear trend, the Grammy has a strong connection to sustainability. The leather used is from Sweden and the intention is to transform the elegance and quality of the lamp into an enticing story that encourages long-lasting bonds.

In collaboration with Tärnsjö, we are deepening our commitment to sustainability by redefining material procurement practices. Grammy exemplifies the integration of craftsmanship and environmental awareness and provides a different point of view on enduring design and conscious production practices.”

Lisa Hilland – Pirouette
”I wanted to create a braided structure from high-quality Tärnsjö leather used for reins and saddlery for horses, where the braiding itself creates an ornamental, centered pattern that floats in the air. Although the crafting process is complex, with braiding performed by skilled saddlers and artisans from Tärnsjö Tannery, the result is a light and naturally organic design.

The name Pirouette comes from one of the most difficult movements in horse dressage: a skill that takes years to master where the horse focuses its energy on turning around its hind legs and creating a circular movement pattern – which is reflected in the design.”

Anki Gneib – Piaff
”Horses have a special place in my heart. As a young woman, I worked as a groom with both trotters and jumpers. Hours have been spent cleaning and caring for the horses’ equipment and preparing the horses for their training. The Piaff room divider is a tribute to Tärnsjö Tannery’s roots and expertise in saddlery and the love of horses.”

”A pouf that is not only a piece of furniture, but also a work of art and a perfect piece of communication. My childish fondness for art that dominates the room is deeply rooted. For me, it is an indispensable nutrient, vital to my existence. I am constantly in search of this, always hungry for more. Growing up with the designs of the Memphis group and Ettore Sottsass, as well as Gaetano Pesce’s iconic ’Big Mama’ and spacious surfaces, I have formed an opinion that furniture should be more than just functional. They must make a statement, be seen and take their place.

In collaboration with Tärnsjö tannery, we are redefining the concept of luxury. For the modern, younger generation, luxury also includes environmental awareness and forward thinking. It’s about ecology in all aspects, both social and technical, is a fusion that I strive for in my design.”

Pia Wallén – First Aid Bag
Working with color and shape, Pia Wallén has used her iconic crosses – strongly associated with her design – to create a bag. The bag is made from Swedish vegetable-dyed leather, with thicker leather on the outside for stability and a much softer one on the inside.

”Through the use of maxi crosses, the bag is both minimalist and maximalist in its design. Red leather felt natural because it signals both danger and love at the same time.

In these troubled times, I wanted to continue to work with the symbol I have been working with for a long time in my design language. The cross is always relevant, but it is especially fitting in these troubled times and in this year’s Together collaboration.

I intuitively felt that I wanted to design a bag. A bag for me is a companion, even sometimes a ’savior in need’.”

Sami Kallio – Pixel stool & bench
Sami Kallio has created a bench in solid smoked oak and Tärnsjö leather, and a stool in solid ash and Tärnsjö leather.

”The purpose of this furniture was to explore braiding and new geometries in an experimental form. By using different directions and distances, the idea was to be able to braid in a new way through an innovative construction. This unique construction and flexible braiding technique can be used in different widths and materials to create variation and contrast.”

Olivia Åhman – Leather chair
For last year’s Together scholarship holder Olivia Åhman, it has undoubtedly been a great experience to participate in the collaboration with Tärnsjö Tannery, and to show her work at NK Interior.

”Leather chair originates from Copper chair where the play with gravity and weight from an aesthetic point of view has been a leading factor. The importance of being able to sit comfortably, even though comfort may not be expected from the shape of the furniture.

The Together scholarship and the collaboration with Tärnsjö have given my furniture new opportunities to explore materials and techniques. In the Leather chair, the focus is on the details. Through different dimensions, seams, and colors, both the form and the conditions of the material are highlighted. Time will show the beauty of letting furniture age.

I am driven by a constant state of learning and the possibilities to influence and facilitate by giving form to function. In my design, the connection between function, form, material and user is always of utmost importance. The form must not take over the original purpose – if it is functional, it is beautiful.

Last spring I graduated from Konstfack (University if Arts, Crafts and Design) and have since then had the opportunity to intern at Claesson Koivisto Rune in Stockholm. Being a designer means facing new challenges every day and to constantly learn. I consider this to be a lifelong adventure and an opportunity for development. I look forward to what is to come and hope to contribute to our bright design future.”

Jonas Bohlin Larv
Even though Jonas Bohlin’s iconic lamp Larv was not created in this year’s Together collaboration, it is an exquisite example of how vegetable-tanned Tärnsjö leather can be used in the most creative and experimental ways. Larv was designed by Bohlin in 1986, and it is a versatile lamp that can be placed on the floor, hung from the wall or ceiling, as well as placed on a stand or alongside other objects. In the coming year, Larv will be sold exclusively at NK Interior.

During Stockholm Design Week, on Monday February 5th, Kadi Harjak will present Made in Sweden and Together alongside Tärnsjö Tannery and the participating Swedish designers and brands. All Together pieces will be displayed at the NK Department Store and the shop windows will feature Made in Sweden with designs from Axel Wannberg, Folkform, Bodafors Möbler, Ringvide and the new design brand Enkei lights, which is launching a new, groundbreaking circular lamp during Stockholm Design Week.

In addition to these, Made in Sweden will also showcase works by Sekt, Sloydlab, Ingridsdotter, Gemla, Sara Ullvetter, and Lisa Hilland/Sami Kallio, among others.

For Hi-Res images, please visit Grand Relations Image Bank

For further information and interview requests, please contact Karolina Klingvall, Senior PR consultant, Grand Relations karolina@grandrelations.com | +46-76 065 65 45


About Tärnsjö Tannery
Tärnsjö Tannery has around 45 employees. Together, these people have extensive knowledge and experience in vegetable tanning and saddlery. Every year, Tärnsjö Tannery produces 700,000 square feet of the finest possible leather, using only vegetable tanning methods and hides from Swedish farms. A large proportion of the leather is shipped to customers in many different industries all over the world, but a growing proportion also goes through Tärnsjö’s saddlery production and is refined into products both for customers and for Tärnsjö’s own collections. The business has been run at the same location in Tärnsjö since 1873. Production methods have changed and modernized the craftsmanship tradition that lives on and is passed on from generation to generation.

Sustainability at all levels permeates the company. Tärnsjö has been a completely chrome-free, vegetable-based tannery since 1988. Only 5 percent of the world’s tanneries are 100% vegetable – and Tärnsjö is one of them. Tärnsjö does all its tanning with mimosa bark and uses only water-based colors for finishing. In addition, the tannery is TUV-certified, which means that all leather is tested and approved not to reach limits for harmful substances. In 2019, Tärnsjö Tannery switched from oil to fossil-free energy, reducing the company’s carbon dioxide emissions to the air by 93 percent. Tärnsjö buys only Swedish hides from slaughterhouses in the local area and takes care of the residual products in production and sells it for the production of gelatin and biogas.

Learn more at tarnsjogarveri.com