Tuesday 14 October 2008

A little bit of history

Today I'm taking you on a tour in Villa Cooper, the house where my sewing club Järvenpään Käsintekijät has its shop since this summer. This log villa was built at the same time and by the same team as Sibelius' Ainola, in 1904. The architect for both houses was Lars Sonck, a famous Finnish architect. The cathedral of Tampere is also by him, so I have known his work already as a little girl when I lived in Tampere.

This villa was originally Villa Enckell, built for the daughter of the Järvenpää Estate, Sigrid Ehrström, and her husband Carl Gustaf Enckell. They were members of the artist society by the lake Tuusulanjärvi. The couple gave up their villa, and in 1919 or thereabouts the villa was moved to the present location, to be used as an eating house for the workers of the plant improvement farm of the estate. However, the estate went bankrupt like many farms at that time, and in 1931 the carpet manufacturer Edward Cooper and his wife Agneta bought the building. It was renamed Villa Cooper. In 2004, when Agneta Cooper died, the town of Järvenpää became the owner of the villa.

There are a couple of corners left in the original state, and the hand made items our club has for sale are exhibited on the original tables and shelves of the Cooper home. This was the office of Edward Cooper:

On the wall of the office are examples of the weaving skills of the carpet manufacturer, portraits of some famous personalities:

The next picture shows the big dining room with the dining table. The room is very dark, as the walls are untreated, round logs.

This is a closer look at the long row of windows.

The upstairs rooms are not in use before the renovation is completed. There will be office facilities for the club and the floor will not be open for public.

The books here arefrom my talented daughter Kaija, who has not seen this house yet.

This closet is next to the bookshelf, it is filled with toys now.

And this last picture completes the tour in the dining room, in the background is the office again.

I took some more pictures of the kitchen and the maid's room, but they will have to wait for next time.

The house is now open for the public at weekends when our shop is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; and the members who are working there as salespersons can give information about the villa and its history.


  1. This is truly beautiful and very interesting! I love Kaija's books displayed there. Are they for sale then? Do you have your meetings there?
    I love the outside of the buliding too.. that roof!

  2. That is wonderful Ulla! I love the way the wood is left unpainted- it looks so beautiful and cosy and so in keeping with the landscape. I had to click on the details in the pics. I love the way the angels are watching from the windows. Thank you for showing it. I know so little about Finland so it's wonderful to see it through your eyes.

    What sweet looking books your daughter makes. Are they blank or tell a story?

  3. Thank you for such a wonderful tour of Villa Cooper. I feel like I've been in a small part of Finland myself. What a delightful experience!

  4. This is so interesting Ulla. The house is beautiful, like some I have seen in Sweden. You are so fortunate to be able to spend 'quality' time there, not just as a tourist passing through.


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