The Makers | Linen production in Lithuania
We’re in love with the beautiful linens we have sourced at reste. Our tablecloths, napkins and aprons are handmade by Not PERFECT LINEN, a small family business based in Vilnius, Lithuania.
Traditional flax growing and linen production techniques are a significant part of Lithuanian heritage. Made from the fibres of the flax plant, linen is valued for its high absorbency and its exceptional coolness in hot weather. The Lithuanian climate has always been perfectly suited to growing quality flax. Today, Baltic linen is highly appreciated by textile experts all over the world, and many globally-known brands produce their linen in Lithuania.
Producing linen from the seeding to the cutting of flax to weaving the fabric is a long and laborious process. Because it takes up so much time, over the years the process has become a way of life for many and it has become a central part of Lithuanian culture and mythology. Many folk songs are based around the process. There is even an annual festival in the village of Budraiciai to celebrate the importance of flax and linen, with artisans and craftsmen attending from all over Lithuania to share their experience and sell their handmade items.
Not PERFECT LINEN was founded by Simona Rimkiene “I grew up in Lithuania, surrounded by fabric. My mother was always sewing, creating and designing; however, I initially pursued a very different path – getting a degree in law. After working as a legal consultant for five years, I found myself spending more and more time sewing with my mother. This led me to the decision to leave the corporate world to start my own textile company.”
This life-changing project soon became a family business and an eco-friendly one at that. All the products are 100% linen, a natural no-waste product, made from the flax plant and supplied by local manufacturers.
So why the name? “ I always get questions about the name of my business”, says Simona “I call it not PERFECT LINEN because the imperfect nature of the fabric was what inspired me to start working with it in the first place. The real beauty of linen is that it’s not perfect – if you keep trying to iron it, you will definitely miss the beauty in it. Linen needs to be used, and it gets better with age.”
Words courtesy of Simona Rimkiene. Photos courtesy of Justė Saulytė.
(Apologies, these products are no longer available)