Friends as entrepreneurs
Leena and Sini in front of Kehräämö in summer 2013.
The beginning of Ruukki Kehräämö
Life is full of surprising encounters that can change the direction of your entire life. That's what happened to two young women at the gate of Helsinki's Rajasaari dog park in the spring of 1987. This meeting of two big natter brothers and their mistresses began a lifelong friendship. And years later, a unique company was also born, the likes of which there is no other in the whole world.
Years passed and the friends lived their lives on their own terms. In 2004, Sini brought the first alpacas from Chile to Finland, where, however, there was no possibility to further process alpaca wool. The wools were sent all the way to England to be spun, because there was no spinning mill in Finland suitable for fine and fat-free alpaca wool.
This gave rise to the idea of owning a spinning mill that spins fine quality fibers. At the same time, the friends' long-term dream of a joint company also came true. Leena's family lived in the charming and unique iron village of Mathildedal, where they acquired premises for spinning machines and a small shop.
Mathildel's village alpacas in 2014.
The premises were found in an old carpentry workshop. A herd of almost 40 alpacas was pastured in the central location of the village, and since then alpacas have been part of Mathildedal's charm.
10 years of spinning operations
The operation was started in 2012. The purchase of spinning machines was a bold leap into the unknown, because neither Leena nor Sinikäm were professionals in the craft industry. But through trial and error, the friends have managed to use spinning machines to create artisan yarns, each production batch of which is completely unique. People in the craft industry all over Finland are in love with the yarns, and today there are also knitting instructions designed by a professional that can be used to knit the most wonderful alpaca sweaters yourself.
Finnish Handicrafts trade fair stand in 2022.
At the same time, Ruukki Kehräämö's own clothing collection began to take shape, which today bears the name Alpaca Royal. Alpaca Royal gets its name from its very high-quality raw material (Royal level alpaca fiber <18µm) and luxury-quality comfort. The Alpaca Royal collection has many loyal users in Finland and now the journey is headed towards the Central European market.
Last year, Ruukin Kehräämö turned 10 years old. This year, we are organizing various events for both our partners and our customers, where you can learn more about our activities and support the important work of the Quechua Benefit organization to improve the well-being of Peru's indigenous peoples and alpacas.
Responsibility has been the supporting ideology of friendship since the beginning, long before it became trendy. Ecological, economic and often forgotten social responsibility are the principles by which we act in all decision situations.
There have been challenges over the years, such as Leena's injury and the pandemic, but they have also been overcome with creative thinking and bold solutions. The whole entrepreneurial story of the friends is best described by creative madness, which is nevertheless based on strong expertise and hard work.
"We hope to see you all at our upcoming parties, which we will announce a little later in the spring. Happy Valentine's Day to everyone and believe in what you do, and everything is possible."
- Leena and Sini
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