We love Winter - wrapping up warm, putting on our boots and heading outside for long walks before heading home to a log fire.We recently discovered the beautiful handcrafted knitwear of Anna Söderström, inspired by the Swedish countryside and made in her London studio. We asked Anna to share her story with us...
What gave you the idea to start your business?
I started knitting when I was pregnant four years ago because I had such morning sickness that it was the only thing I was able to do. Turned out I was good at it and when I couldn’t find patterns I liked I started making my own.
What inspires your designs?
Sweden, where I come from, and specifically the island of Gotland. At the moment I’m studying a collection of colour patterns that are thought to originate from the island.
Why is handcrafting so important to you?
Because making things with your hands is important. It just is. When the craft is genuinely a purpose in itself it brings together people of real skill and enthusiasm and it shows through in the finished piece. Without that you are playing a game with a lot of losers in it, whether it’s the consumers, the suppliers, the workers or the planet. It’s the same with food.
What is the best advice you were ever given?
Only work with people you like. When you set out on a project you never know where you’ll end up, but if you are surrounded by people you like and whose work you admire, it’s likely you’ll at least end up somewhere interesting. And of course for every supplier who really wants to see you succeed, you have a better chance when things are tough.
I have a collaboration with Paxton Chocolate called The Chocolate Sheep (www.thechocolatesheep.co.uk) which might sound a strange combination, but the result is really quite interesting. The idea would never have occurred to us if we didn’t have a meeting of minds and a personal appreciation of each other’s work.
What do you do when you're not designing?
I run, visit friends and sleep when I get the chance.
What would you have been in another life?
An explorer. The kind that slashes her way through unchartered jungles and crosses oceans in a hot air balloon.
What are your favourites from the Seven Boot Lane collection?
We've teamed up with Anna to giveaway the perfect Winter Warmers gift set to prepare you for the cold winter months ahead, which includes a pair of Seven Boot Lane boots and a choice of snood or scarf and wrist warmers from Anna. All you have to do is let us know what you love most about Winter for the chance to win by posting your answers on our Facebook page, tweeting them to us or emailing us at email@example.com with "Winter Warmers" as the subject line. One winner will be chosen at random on 20th December.
Anna is also offering all Seven Boot Lane customers and fans 10% off her entire range online so you can treat yourself or someone else for Christmas! Just quote the code 7Boot13 at the checkout when shopping online at www.annasoderstrom.com.
Need some inspiration? Check out our Winter Warmers Pinterest board here to see some of the things we love about Winter. Good luck!
Terms and Conditions:
There is no entry fee and no purchase necessary to enter this competition.
Closing date for entry will be midnight on Friday 20th December 2013. After this date no further entries will be permitted.
No responsibility can be accepted for entries not received for whatever reason.
Seven Boot Lane reserves the right to cancel or amend the competition and these terms and conditions without notice. Any changes to the competition will be notified to entrants as soon as possible by us.
No cash alternative to the prizes will be offered. The prizes are not transferable. Prizes are subject to stock availability and we reserve the right to substitute any prize with another of equivalent or greater value.
The winner will be chosen at random by Seven Boot Lane from entries sent to us and to Anna Söderström.
The winner will be notified by email within 7 days of the closing date. If the winner cannot be contacted or does not claim the prize within 14 days of notification, we reserve the right to withdraw their prize and pick a replacement winner.
The promoter’s decision in respect of all matters to do with the competition will be final and no correspondence will be entered into.
By entering this competition, you agree to be bound by these terms and conditions.