images courtesy of Nootka

An Interview with Lisa Olsson, Founder of NOOTKA

Written by Decirée Josefsson by Sandra Myhrberg

Outside the tunnel vision of blinding city lights.

The constant development and excitement to be bold and confident is a statement of Nootka”

Nootka is a Swedish based jewelry brand with an inspiring design that manifests the shining raw beauty of nature. With high enthusiasm in sustainability, humble resistance in relation to the fast fashion market which is experiencing strong growth, they are a leading light for generations to come. To reduce their environmental impact all of their items are handcrafted in Stockholm, using recycled 925 silver. Moreover, they are breaking the traditional ways of designing by not producing collections based upon seasons. Proving that their jewelry is timeless and can be worn over again. Longevity is the sentiment behind every unique piece which ensures long lasting memories to be created together with Nootka.

What’s captivating about jewelry from your point of view?
Unaffected by era there's an ageless beauty with an intricate personal value. Recurrently connected to a deeper association as an extended arm and version of self. Compared to a garment of clothing that easily is exchanged throughout seasons. Statement pieces seem to be lasting and worn more stable throughout time, instead of an asset for replacement.

In what ways is Nootka working to be sustainable?
To avoid duplicating structures we do not produce new items every fourth season. However, that does not by definition mean that a company has to keep up the tempo to be relevant. Because of what our customers have demanded I’ve for example chosen to restock the chunky ring into the latest collection. Showing that fashion doesn't need to develop in symbioses with speed to be relevant.

How do you wear your jewelry?
I wear them as if it was a piece of me rather than an object and it gives me confidence. Heels for example can redefine the overall impression of one's appearance and frame of mind. For me, it’s the tiniest detail of silver that completes the whole look and sets the mood for the day.

To pursue a dream takes courage and patience, could you guide us through the different stages of creating Nootka?
I have always felt the need to be creative for my soul to fully experience happiness. In my early years, I did a lot of needlework and it felt almost like an individual right to do such. When the idea of Nootka first came across, it started out with a millions of questions to answer to fully understand the whole process. How do I craft jewelry? Moreover, run a business and create a brand out of it? While scouting and browsing ideas, later on I felt that I gained enough knowledge to dare to try. To never know exactly what the outcome might turn out to be,
makes it even more interesting to always keep on going. If I would've known before, how many fires needed to be extinguished along the way, I might not have taken as many risks along the way, ending up at this stage of the journey where I am today. I’m grateful that I believed in myself and always kept on going.

Where do you find inspiration?
As for others, it’s easy to get stuck with tunnel vision in the blinding city lights of our society. I, therefore, turn to nature to remind myself to look up from the mass and stay present in that exact moment. Nootka-Sound is a beautiful postcard-like district in Canada and has been a great baseline for both the name and the design of the brand. Rather than a specific object, the energy of nature is more what’s behind the inspiration for my artwork. The details in structure rather than material.

Do you have a place where you go to re-boost your energy?
I’m originally from Malmö and my parents have a cabin in the countryside close to Skåne. Even if I don’t visit often enough, that place, which I call home, deeply calms my soul in stressful and hectic periods of life. Sometimes I hardly notice when working. During those times I often turn to this place to reset my energy and stay present for that time being.

Would you consider yourself free in your creativity?
I feel young in this project, constantly trying to not be too concerned about the future. Instead, take care of the light-hearted playfulness occurring in those moments of creating. The constant development and excitement to be bold and confident is a statement of Nootka, which I hope won’t get lost along the way. As I mentioned before one never knows exactly how the outcome might turn out to be, which makes it even more interesting to always keep on going.