Suomen Silkkituote Oy (Finnish Silk Ltd) is established by Otto Berner. After studying weaving in his native Switzerland, Otto visits Finland and notices a gap in the market for silk linings, undergarments, etc.
Finnish Silk Ltd builds its headquarters in the Vallila neighborhood, located in the central- northern section of Helsinki, the capital of Finland. Otto continues in his commitment to producing the highest quality products and therefore, will only send his fabrics to Belgium to be dyed.
Finnish Silk Ltd officially changes its name to Vallilan Silkkitehdas Ltd (Vallila Silk Ltd) on March 10, 1944. The company continues to focus on creating silk linings. Around this time, Finland emerges victorious after fighting in three successive wars beginning in 1939. As the country's post-war economy prospers, Vallila Silk grows as well.
Vallila Silk moves into home interior fabrics. The work premises expand considerably as half of the weaving machines are dedicated to producing drapes for Finnish homes.
Otto's son, Rudolf 'Rudi' Berner begins his career at Valilla. With the help of Swiss weavers, the Dreher fabric is created and becomes a significant part of the collection. The 1960s also sees a trend towards thicker and heavier fabrics.
Fabrics designed in-house begin to be manufactured. A successful collaboration with Edward Terzibasiyan, a well-known print-fabric designer begins.
American artist and designer, Howard Smith joins Vallila. His big and bold designs give a colorful new vibrancy to the collection, which is an instant success and help to establish the Valilla brand. The collaboration between Smith and Vallila extends well into the 1970s, resulting in groundbreaking designs like the now classic Makeba and Miriam, which continue to be manufactured.
In 1971, the company stops weaving operations and moves into wholesale. Creation Baumann fabrics are imported and the emphasis on printed fabrics increases.
A third generation of the Berner family is added when Rudolf's daughter, Anne Berner, joins Vallila and begins to develop the interior design arm of the company.
On November 11, the company changes its name to Vallila Interior to better reflect what it does. Howard Smith designs the new Vallila logo, which with minor alternations, is still in use today.
Verhoshoppi Co is acquired and a subsidiary company, Decorama Ltd, is established to focus on the contract business.
Anne Berner takes over the management of Vallila Interior.
Interia International is founded as an export company to focus on contract and retail business opportunities around the world. Likewise, Vallila expands into the emerging markets of the Baltic countries and Russia. In 1995, Vallila's first 'shop-in-shop' is launched with great success.
Vallila grows steadily into one of Finland's best known interior design brands. As Keha and Decohouse are acquired, the company grows and expands to include wallpaper, furniture, lighting and carpets. By the end of the decade, the company reaches a turnover of 35 - 40 million Euros, has over 20 shop-in-shops throughout Finland and employs approximately 130 people.
As a result of the consolidation of all its subsidiaries, the company is a major turn-key provider and emphasizes on strengthening its brand and developing its export market.
The demand for Vallila's products is worldwide and export operations grow significantly. The Vallila brand continues to develop with the launch of several new product lines. Mathias Berner, becomes CEO. Anne Berner takes on a new role as the Chairman of the Board.
The Vallila Corporation centralizes its warehouse functions in a new logistics centre in Tuusula. The online shop Vallilastore.com expands to the entire EU region. Vallila opens a store in Stockmann department store, central Helsinki.
DESIGN & FUNCTIONALITY
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