Finel – beautiful colorful enamel products from Finland

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Finel is a trademark under which Wärtsilä and Järvenpää Emali sold enamel metal items such as bowls and pots starting in the early 1950s. At first the designs had to be bought from abroad but soon Wärtsilä’s subsidiary company Arabia assigned well known designers to make new models.

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Designers such as Seppo Mallat (pots and pans), Antti Nurmesniemi ( the Pehtoori coffee pot), Heikki Orvola ( a water kettle) and most famously Kaj Franck designed practical, durable and beautiful houseware by applying a strong glass like cover to cast iron goods. Kaj Franck would come to win awards in Milan for his enamel line of different sized bowls.

Later on illustrators Raija Uosikkinen and Esteri Tomula designed strong patterns for the enameled products that Kaj Franck and others had made – Ritari (Knight), Punahilkka (Red Riding Hood), Vegeta and Neptune were some of their illustrations. You can find all of the patterns here. Items are most often marked Wärtsilä Finel Made in Finland.

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Steel quickly replaced enamel as a widely used material in the late 1970s and not much has been made with it since then. The home goods department of Wärtsilä including Arabia was sold to Hackman Oy in 1981 which in turn was bought by Iittala and then the Fiskars Cooperation in 2007. Finel was sold to Boris Höglund in 1994-1997 and it is now run as a family company, with focus on bathroom and kitchen fittings. Recently they started working with the young upcoming designer Sebastian Jansson on new indoor and ourdoor designs.

Finel - the history of the enamel company

Facts and inspiration from Deko, Wikipedia and Laatutavara.

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