Artist Mari Jalava

Clean nature and the silence of the forest empower and inspire. Every single one of the pieces designed by Mari is a work of art, laden of thought and emotion, the calmness of nature. Who is the woman behind the art?

Out of a passion for making things by hand

After completing my studies and receiving a diploma in crafts and design in 1996 I got a job in the wardrobe of the Finnish National Theatre. My roots kept calling me home to Kangasniemi, though, and in 2011 Jalavilla was born – out of a passion for making things by hand.

Alongside with running my business I have acquired more craft skills on various courses: painting in oils and water-colours, willow weaving, working with concrete and papier mâché etc. I received a diploma in product development in 2013.

My work is driven by a lust for invention and a strong will to discover new solutions. Helping my customers is very much a matter of the my heart.

Artist Mari Jalava

The birth of felt jewellery

I have always loved three-dimensional shapes. I roam the woods and sigh in ectacy over the soft roundness of lichen-covered rocks, admire tussocks of moss and stroke grey tree stumps and roots.

I used to design three-dimensional surfaces and decorations already as student. At the time I brought them to life with various sewing techniques. I had tried felting a long time ago and the spark was still there at the back of my mind. So I took a felting course just to realise that this is what I love – I was spellbound by felting. After years of unwittingly searching for it I had found my form of expression. An ancient technique that allows me to realise even my wildest designs beautifully.

A woman seduced by wool

When I see heaps of showy wool and beads of different colours in front of me I am filled with fervour to get my hands on them. Discovering new ideas and making them visible are very much a matter of the heart to me. Combine all this and my love of working with my hands, ever since childhood, my neatness and eye for detail and you will see that I give my all to every piece I make.

One felting project produces masses of ideas for more and more products. There is an enormous number of chains of ideas, trials and errors – a lot of time and thought – behind what is now my jewellery.