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  • Photographer: Jesper Anhede

Fred about woodworking, craftmanship and conservation

Sustainability, history and going “back to basics” !

“Working with wood affects your body and soul,” says Hjo-based lumberjack and craftsman Fred Lagnemar. He runs a new business, “Ur skogen, i handen”, which offers courses and workshops both in Hjo and out in the forest itself. Tourists and residents of Hjo alike are welcome to learn about and try out woodworking and carpentry, and to get “back to basics”. That means using hand tools and simple techniques to make something that can be used at home. A branch found in the forest could be transformed into a spoon. It’s sustainable manufacturing which is good for our health at the same time.


The love to wood 

In the midst of society’s digital revolution, Fred wants to go back to our roots and to the tangible, focusing on our hands and giving our heart and thoughts the space to wander freely. “I believe this is the direction we need to move in,” he says. Fred loves to work with wood, both as a craftsman in his new business, but also as a carpenter at K-Märkt, a local business. K-Märkt is one of many crafts businesses in Hjo, a joinery with a focus on preserving buildings. “We work a great deal with local customers, since people in Hjo are generally pretty interested in building preservation and care about the old buildings in town. Maybe it’s not that surprising given all the fantastic wooden houses in Hjo.” 


Photographer: Jesper Anhede


Building preservation 

We asked Fred about his thoughts on building preservation. For him, the most important thing is sustainability, but he also takes a holistic view. “When we restore a building, we need to take into account the building’s history, that is, how a building may have changed over the years, as well as keeping the building’s outdoor and living environment in mind,” he says, “We also try to be as sustainable and authentic as possible when it comes to our choice of materials and tools. For example, you should use axes when working with wood and timber on buildings from the Middle Ages.”  


Photographer: Jesper Anhede


Traditional handicrafts 

Fred loves traditional handicrafts, regardless of whether he is working on large restoration jobs or smaller carpentry projects. “I feel good working with wood, and I want to share that with others.” So, from summer 2022, beginners and experienced woodworkers are welcome to visit Fred’s workshop in the historic Stadsgården in Hjo, or join one of the courses out in the forest. You will learn how to use hand tools, carve with knives and chop using an axe. This sustainable activity will nourish your soul and give you the chance to go “back to basics”!