Ulla-Karin Hellsten and her husband, Börje Norberg, together run the company Östergötlands Ullspinneri, the last spinning mill of its type in Sweden. The mill primarily produces wool yarn on a Spinning Jenny, but wool blankets are also woven there based on Swedish textile traditions, including the “BÄÄ” sheep blanket. What is unique about the company is its combination of design, solid knowledge of craft and a coordinated finishing process.
Ulla-Karin Hellsten is an entrepreneur who has tirelessly come up with new ideas to adapt the spinning mill’s operations to a modern society. During the 35 years that the spinning mill has been in existence she has organized over 50 exhibitions in various parts of the world. She has received a number of awards for Good Swedish Design. And above all she fulfilled her vision of maintaining a handicraft tradition.
In 2014 Ulla-Karin was appointed Honorary Doctorate at Linköping University.
Visitors are welcome at the spinning mill’s factory store and gallery. For hours, please see the website. In the Slöjdvillan study center adjacent to the spinning mill in Stora Åby, classes offered in various techniques.