What is made in Lithuania
Lithuania is a small country of 3 million people. It’s geographical location and natural resources have contributed to the local skills that help to produce their unique products today. Here are some of them.
Linen bedding, clothes and towels
Prior to the spread of cotton, linen was the only fabric available in this entire region. This knowledge of making noncotton fabrics has been preserved until this day. Now Lithuania is widely recognised for its ability to make high-quality linen clothes, bedding, kitchen accessories and even toys for children. Processed linen plant is probably most commonly known for its natural fibers that retain heat in a colder environment and stay cool in summer. It is also twice as strong as cotton, can absorb up to 20% of its weight in water before feeling damp and has an unusual natural ability to fight the growth of the bacteria.LinenMe.com
It is not necessarily a replacement for cotton, due to its limited elasticity properties which make linen products look wrinkled. But this is accepted as a natural linen charm and is actually expected. Overall it is a great addition to the household, with a positive impact on health especially for babies and people with allergies or sensitive skin conditions.
Being a country covered by forests, Lithuania has a lot of people with woodworking skills which date back for centuries. Amongst them, a skill of making wood furniture is undoubtedly the most popular these days. A lot of small and medium-sized factories either making their own designs or producing for the more famous furniture brands. Even IKEA is tapping into this now by recently opening their largest factory there too. Solid wood furniture is another niche where you can find some interesting and unique surprises. One of the examples could be a small company called “Sendvario Baldai”, which is worth mentioning for two reasons. Firstly, it is making only solid wood furniture which follows the blueprints from the 18th century. Secondly, to keep it as natural as possible all wood is preserved with a natural preservative like a beeswax instead of the usual polish. According to the team at the company, solid and natural furniture is in demand worldwide, but it seems to be especially popular in Germany.
Natural linen and wooden toys
The new generation of parents worldwide seems to be increasingly concerned about a potential contamination and toxicity of their children’s toys. Thus small Lithuanian makers, who have access to natural raw materials, have stepped in to provide linen dolls and other wooden toys. They are very different from what one might usually find in the toy shop and tend to appeal to the families who are embracing things made from natural and organic. Wooden toys are also increasing in popularity because of their novelty factor. It is a very different playing experience for a child and their parents. These toys are on the revival across the world, and the wooden toy making skills have remained only in few European countries. Having a plentiful supply of managed forests also helped Lithuania to become the leader in wooden toy making today.
Saunas and Hot Tubs
These guys are taking their hot tub and sauna experience to the new level. In Lithuania, just like in all Scandinavian countries, sauna is often a party experience for a group. Of course, it is much more fun outdoors, somewhere by the lake. And interestingly, the small detail of temperature outside is not that important: such sauna is enjoyed all year round. That explains the innovation and variety of options available. It is not just about the standard wooden sauna house, from Lithuania you can also get one on the wheels. That way you can take it to any place you fancy. Another popular export these days is the hot tub. Anyone can get it delivered to their home (anywhere in Europe) with “plug and play” instructions. Uniquely from most of other hot tubs you have seen before these run on a wood-burner, just stuff the logs in and enjoy the experience. No electricity or plumbing is required.
It seems that Lithuanians are utilising their heritage and access to local natural resources to create health conscious products. To be completely honest, it is not something that I expected when I started this research. I hope to find more pleasant and fascinating discoveries on my next guides for other European countries.