History

Decorative & Artistic Handicrafts A. Kangasniemi Ky

A. Kangasniemi Ky was established in 1995. The company has operated at its current location since 1998. Owner of the business, Ari Kangasniemi, is a self-taught handicraft specialist, who mainly uses reindeer antler as his working material. Ari spent his childhood and youth working around the culture of skills and handicrafts. In the 1960s and 1970s, making handicrafts was not a profession, but moreover an integral part of Lappish life, and tools were made ourselves by hand.


In 1981, Irene was taken on as an apprentice with bone work master Veikko Piipponen in Rovaniemi, and since this time, in addition to other tasks she has decorated and engraved antler products for a number of years. Irene has training in a number of fields in handicrafts and art. Irene’s grandparents on her mother’s and father’s side of the family were reindeer owners, and her grandfather was a famous for castrating reindeer with his teeth.


There are very few handicraft makers in Lapland who make products using reindeer antler, including Swedish, Norwegian and Russian Lapland. The reason for this may be because reindeer antler work was earlier primarily for making utensils that were not available from shops. The reindeer husbandry culture has also changed over the years, so that for example, the introduction of the snowmobile has displaced the tools needed for reindeer husbandry such as the reindeer sled and harness. Earlier, items made from reindeer antler were utensils used daily, which were taken on long trips when moving herds of reindeer from one place to the next.

ari ja irene kangasniemi hornwork rovaniemi lapland

ari puukot kangasniemi hornwork rovaniemi lapland

Irene and Ari Kangasniemi want to cherish the old tradition of reindeer antler working with their business. They want to tell tourists and workshop visitors about using reindeer antler as a handicraft material. Reindeer husbandry is still one of the most traditional sources of livelihood in Lapland, and there are about twice as many reindeer in Lapland than people.

Irene and Ari also make products for today’s needs. A wide range of different products may be made from reindeer antler, and we often help our customers in designing the perfect gift. As the material is unique, the products made from it are also one-of-a-kind.

 

 

irene tyoskentelee taidekasityo kangasniemi hornwork lapland

Ari’s nephew, Jukka Kangasniemi, works in our company.He graduated after completion of his artisan apprenticeship in May 2014 in the Study Programme in Handicraft Design and Production.Jukka feels that apprenticeship is an excellent way of learning the profession of making traditional handicrafts.“Learning by doing combined with the courses provided by the Sámi Education Institute is the best way to learn the secrets of antler working”, Jukka tells.

jukka kangasniemi kangasniemi hornwork lapland rovaniemi

Tourists are also very welcome to our Lappish log home, built by Ari in 2001. We enjoy telling visitors about the Lappish way of life and housing. Our company is located on the old road running along the Ounasjoki River, a place easily visited by snowmobiles in the wintertime. We will chat with visitors about life in Lapland while savouring coffee, tea or blueberry juice comfortably surrounded by the sound of silence.

We hope you and your customers will enjoy being with us, and we welcome you to come and enjoy the Lappish way of life.

Irene ja Ari Kangasniemi


www.loghouse.fi