Finnish Design Shop in Turku draws on the surrounding forest for its organic design

Turku’s Finnish Design Shop incorporates wood into its exterior and interior aesthetic

Interior display shelving and exterior of Finnish Design Shop in Turku
(Image credit: Left, Mikko Ryhänen and right, Anders Portman)

The new Finnish Design Shop in Turku, on the west coast of Finland, draws from its environment with a sustainable design incorporating the surrounding forest and wood. Located in the middle of a nature reserve, the new logistic centre, showroom, office and wild food restaurant effortlessly blends into its environment.

A façade by Avanto Architects mimics the rich hues of the forest, while interiors by local design studio Joanna Laajisto incorporate solid pine and ash into the design. Chef and foraging specialist Sami Tallberg also draws from the surrounding forest for the café and restaurant food, with ingredients such as birch sap, mushrooms and berries maintaining a focus on local and seasonal cuisine.

images of the space


(Image credit: Mikko Ryhänen)

The online Nordic design store has sought both an authentic atmosphere for employees and a striking connection to nature for visitors in the new space. An emphasis on preserving forest biodiversity results in the Finnish Design Shop compensating for its carbon emissions by buying and preserving forest in Finland.

‘We compensate for our carbon footprint by protecting forests that are under danger to be cut in Finland,’ says Teemu Kiiski, CEO and owner of Finnish Design Shop. ‘Currently, only an alarmingly small proportion – six per cent – of Finland’s forests is permanently protected, which is why the habitats of many species are endangered. We see our company’s sustainability as an ongoing, never-ending process, in which we want not only to use the latest findings of forest and climate research but also to study ourselves in order to understand and to find the most effective ways to preserve forest biodiversity.’

images of the space

(Image credit: Mikko Ryhänen)

It is a philosophy reflected in a design that puts transparency, equality and respect for nature at the forefront. ‘We explored a large number of existing buildings in the Turku area for our operations, but we found nothing that we could use,’ Kiiski adds. ‘As Nordic design is largely about wood and forest, it felt natural that those should be elements of the view from our windows. Forest also serves as a calming element in busy office life.’

Natural forest undergrowth and stones excavated from the site were incorporated into the area’s landscape, a theme that continues inside, in the offices and restaurant. Laajisto’s interior design encompasses both wooden furniture and colourful pieces from the Finnish Design Shop’s own collection. ‘Forest is a strong element in the Nordic lifestyle. It was also a source of inspiration for our new logistics centre and showroom,’ says Kiiski.

finnishdesignshop.com (opens in new tab)

images of the space

(Image credit: Anders Portman)

images of the space

(Image credit: Mikko Ryhänen)

images of the space

(Image credit: Anders Portman)

images of the space

(Image credit: Mikko Ryhänen)

Hannah Silver joined Wallpaper* in 2019 to work on watches and jewellery. Now, as well as her role as watches and jewellery editor, she writes widely across all areas including on art, architecture, fashion and design. As well as offbeat design trends and in-depth profiles, Hannah is interested in the quirks of what makes for a digital success story.