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Object Timeline

1986

  • Work on this object began.

2006

  • We acquired this object.

  • Work on this object ended.

2013

2019

  • You found it!

Window Blinds, Open Sky, late 20th–early 21st century

This is a Window blinds. It was manufactured by Woodnotes. It is dated late 20th–early 21st century and we acquired it in 2006. Its medium is paper yarn and cotton, metal bars on top and bottom of panel and its technique is plain weave with bands of grouped warps and lino weave to hold warps in place. It is a part of the Textiles department.

The original idea behind the Finnish design firm, Woodnotes, was to combine artistic creativity with inspiration from two basic Finnish materials: wood and paper. All of the products by Woodnotes utilize paper yarn that is spun from durable kraft paper. The amount of paper used in the textile varies between 70–100%, with cotton as the secondary fiber. Although the product line has grown over the years to include furniture, home accessories, carpets, blinds, partitions, and upholstery fabric, Woodnotes still holds true to its original idea of creating products from paper yarn.
Woodnotes was founded by Ritva and Mikko Puotila in 1987. Ritva is a noted Finnish textile artist who has received numerous awards for her work as designer and textile artist. Prior to co-founding Woodnotes, she worked as a textile designer for Tampella, then the largest linen manufacturer in Finland. Tampella also manufactured paper yarn for insulating cables, which was where Ritva learned the various technical and visual aspects of paper yarn.
Paper has been used in textile making for centuries—most notably in Japan as part of the kimono tradition and in the creation of textiles by NUNO and other contemporary designers. In 2002, the museum acquired Fluctuation by textile designer Akihiro Kaneko, which combines polyester and paper and represents the importance of the finishing process to the overall look and texture of the final textile. Woodnotes textiles, on the other hand, are significant in the quantity and durability of paper used to ultimately create an “everyday” beauty for the home expressed through a clarity of form, technique, and material.
Open Sky is one of a group of four Woodnotes textiles being considered for acquisition. These textiles reflect the best qualities of Finnish design in general and give the museum’s collection further depth in textiles from this country.

This object was donated by Woodnotes. It is credited Gift of Woodnotes.

  • Textile, ca. 2015
  • 60% merino wool, 25% baby alpaca, 10% hand-loomed cashmere, 5% silk.
  • Courtesy ED by Ellen DeGeneres.
  • 28.2016.3

Its dimensions are

Warp x Weft: 120 x 300 cm (47 1/4 in. x 9 ft. 10 1/8 in.)

Cite this object as

Window Blinds, Open Sky, late 20th–early 21st century; Manufactured by Woodnotes (Finland); Finland; paper yarn and cotton, metal bars on top and bottom of panel; Warp x Weft: 120 x 300 cm (47 1/4 in. x 9 ft. 10 1/8 in.); Gift of Woodnotes; 2006-36-2

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<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url=https://www-6.collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/18707275/ |title=Window Blinds, Open Sky, late 20th–early 21st century |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=22 October 2019 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>