Mifuko was founded in 2009 by us, Mari Martikainen and Minna Impiö, two Finnish designers.
We are friends since studying Textile Art and Design at the University of Art and Design Helsinki.
In 2008 I lived in Kenya with my family and Mari came to visit us. Together we were exploring the markets in Nairobi and inspired by the handcraft skills of the artisans. We got an idea to combine our design skills with the traditional techniques found in Kenya to create sustainable design with a personal twist.
It has been great to have a possibility to build a long-term relationship with the artisan groups in rural areas and cities. For me it is important that through Mifuko we can create and design in a way that is sustainable and contributes positively to the world.
It’s been a great journey since 2009 when we started Mifuko with Minna. We met first time in 1996 and studied together in University of Art and Design Helsinki, now known as Aalto University.
I love constantly develop new designs with Minna and working closely with our talented artisans to test new materials and find new ideas.
It’s important to me that my work has positive influence and through my work world can be a better place to all of us. Materials, techniques and collaboration with producers and designers is my biggest inspiration.
To me work with Mifuko means creative and fun co-operation between different countries and cultures and of course, creating a social impact!
Our story: Work of hands and hearts
In everything we do we are guided by our core values: being unique, joyful and socially responsible.
Meeting with artisans is most important part of our work, seeing the work of hands and hearts. When we visit Kenya we arrange meetings with the artisans and openly discuss where we have succeeded and where to improve. We also tell the artisans about the feedback we get from our customers which is truly rewarding. We want to encourage them to tell us about their wishes and challenges they face related to their work in order to improve the way we work together.