It's officially Sweden Week in Seattle and Swedish label The Local Firm is teaming up with Blackbird to celebrate the arrival of Princess Madeleine with a contest!

Blackbird is giving away a pair of The Local Firm shades to the two Blackbird Blog readers that send in the most creative responses to a very fitting question: What is Sweden's greatest contribution to the world?

We encourage you to be as creative as humanly (or digitally) possible with your submissions, whether you make a YouTube video, paint a picture, write a haiku, short story or essay, record a song, or use any other creative outlet to pay homage to the country that brought us social democracy, quality death metal, and the memory foam matresses.

Only two rules apply:
1. No full frontal.
2. Written entries are to be under 500 words.

All entries must be submitted by midnight Pacific Standard Time on 17 May (which happens to be Sweden's neighbor, Norway's national independence day). The entries will be voted upon by the Blackbird panel and the winner will be announced on the blog. First prize is the pair of The Local Firm shades of the winner's choice as well as a mix of delicious Swedish edibles. The runner up will receive the second pair of glasses, and both of the two best entries will be displayed on the Blackbird Blog for the world to see.

The Local Firm, which will hit the Blackbird sales floor this fall, is a Swedish label designed by Richard Hutchisson and Axel Nyhage who carry joint experience from labels such as Acne Jeans, Whyred and Tiger of Sweden. Founded in August of 2007, the label puts a progressive edge on street fashion of the Eastern Bloc with intelligent, artful design.

Email submissions to james@blackbirdballard.com or send them to us via USPS at

2208 NW Market Street, Suite 320
Seattle, WA 98107