ANNANSTANS Limited Collection

A kaftan in blue and gray and cushion covers with modern prints in gray, red and green from ANNANSTANS collection.

ANNANSTANS Limited Collection

Unexpected encounters

ANNANSTANS has a modern, urban expression, but not because of a machine. The pieces are crafted by hand, so each one is unique.

In ANNANSTANS, meaning “elsewhere” in Swedish, the contemporary concepts of designer Martin Bergström find new expressions through social entrepreneur artisans in India, Romania and Thailand.

Individual, with a meaning

ANNANSTANS collection is where handicraft merges with modern design, resulting in new, poetic textiles, cushion covers, ceramics and more. The individual products were never intended to coordinate in a conventional way. Martin Bergström, ANNANSTANS designer, says: “It’s more like a family than a collection. The items match and they don’t match.”

Scarves, cushion covers and textile covered boxes with abstract prints and irregular shaped ceramics and baskets from ANNANSTANS collection.

“I was inspired by silence and remote islands. I wanted to create something you can’t really put into words, like daydreams and memories existing elsewhere… Collages and silent poetry.”

– Martin Bergström, Designer
Cushion covers with abstract prints and hand embroidery in green, grey, black and red from the ANNANSTANS collection.

Modern meets traditional

Martin Bergström began creating all the ANNANSTANS prints with hand-drawn sketches inspired by nature. A digital printing technique that consumes much less water than other methods, transferred them to the textiles, making the design statement also an environmental one. Artisans from Indian Rangsutra social enterprise then hand-embroidered the ANNANSTANS cushion covers, adding a unique contrast to Martin’s striking designs.

Handmade ceramic bowls with irregular shapes in dark blue and green created for the ANNANSTANS collection.

Unique textures

Thai social entrepreneur Doi Tung has been an IKEA partner since 2012. The artisans say that so far, the ANNANSTANS products have been the most complex, but also the most rewarding and involving to co-create. They developed the unusual, “rough”-looking texture, paired with a carefully selected glaze, to achieve a distinctive effect that’s subtly different from piece to piece.

A new way of weaving

At Industree in India, the handwoven, renewable natural fibers from the banana plant are a speciality. But rather than their usual neatness and precision, Martin wanted an organic and haphazard look that would showcase the beautiful, natural material. Mani, a Master artisan, had to experiment before she could achieve the desired “imperfect” effect. She even coined a term for this novel technique – “crazy weave”.

An artisan weaving a banana fiber basket with an irregular new weave for the ANNANSTANS collection.

“I called it what it is – ‘crazy weave’! I like this type of topsy-turvy weaving. The basket pattern and finish look really nice and they were so much fun to make.”

– Mani, Master artisan and trainer at Industree

More than a collection

ANNANSTANS collection stands out for its collaborative, socially-minded values as much as for the quality of its design and hand-finishing. ANNANSTANS was a collaborative effort between IKEA product developers, designer Martin Bergström and talented artisans from four different social enterprises in India, Romania and Thailand. Each member of this international team contributed with their own ideas, skills and experience to create a highly distinctive collection.

A wooden mushroom from the ANNANSTANS collection is being hand-turned by an artisan.

Woodturning skills

For ANNANSTANS collection, Martin wanted to develop a hand-turned wood product that would feel individual, authentic, natural – and, of course, pleasing to look at, together with the artisans at Mesteshukar ButiQ, a small workshop outside Bucharest, Romania. MBQ is a social enterprise and IKEA partner that promotes Roma craftsmanship and inclusivity through high-quality, handmade products.

A handmade wooden mushroom decoration made by social entrepreneur artisans for ANNANSTANS collection.

Designed for your senses

Mushrooms are a frequent motif in Martin’s work. The form is instantly recognisable, yet exudes an air of mystery that fits perfectly with the themes of ANNANSTANS collection. The wood used to make the ANNANSTANS mushrooms comes only from well managed resources, as with any IKEA product. A small part of forest, living on inside your home.

Partners with social entrepreneurs

Read more about how and why we work with social entrepreneurs around the world.