The largest sewing festival in Finland, Ommel 2019, gathers large numbers of hobbyists and professional sewists together in Espoo in early June. There will be over 60 exhibitors and more than a 100 collaborators. Approximately 5 000 visitors are expected over the weekend.
Do-it-yourself and sewing as a hobby have been on the rise for several years now. Do-it-yourself, or DIY, means the possibility of making your own individual choices, of making clothes to fit your own measurements and preferences. A sewing enthusiast can at the same time make more ecological and responsible choices and also fight against the culture of disposable fashion plaguing the clothing industry. When you have taken the time and care to choose your materials and sewed the garment yourself, you also want to take better care of it and wear it as long as possible.
The community aspect of sewing has interested people throughout the decades. Sewing clubs and Martha meetings have been joined by sewing communities on social media, where members share photos, videos and instructions while also challenging others to try new things. The largest Finnish sewing group on Facebook has over 36 000 members, and there are several active groups with a few hundred or thousand members.
” Social media is making the textile industry and sewing as a hobby visible in a brand new way. You can find new friends that share your interests in the sewing groups and you get to meet them live at Ommel 2019. We have dozens of volunteers helping to make the festival a reality and most of them have been found through sewing groups on social media”, says Jenni Salminen, the chairperson of Ommel ry.
A festival just for sewists
Ommel 2019 is a sewing festival with a strong communal aspect for all sewists from beginners to professionals. The event combines a fabric and sewing supply market, a three-day sewing retreat, and educational contents such as courses, lectures, and workshops. This second time there will also be exhibitors from Sweden as well as from Finland.
Entry to our festival is free. Workshops and lectures are also free and you don’t have to sign up for them in advance. The sewing retreat and courses are paid. A part of the program will be streamed live with the financial help of the City of Espoo. City events Espoo is organising shuttle from the centre of Helsinki to the festival,
“This event is special for sewing enthusiasts because everything at the festival is about sewing. When the theme is clearly defined, it brings all visitors together. It will also be easy to strike up a conversation with a stranger when everyone has a common interest. That makes the atmosphere at the event exceptionally warm”, says Salminen.
The first festival in 2018 brought together 3000 sewists. The event is organised by Ommel ry, a non-profit association formed in 2017 that is comprised of both sewing enthusiasts and entrepreneurs.
Information about the event can be found at https://www.ommel.fi/en/ommel-2019/
Chairperson of Ommel ry, entrepreneur
+358 45 697 4480