3 x knitspirational boutiques in Helsinki
Cosy wool knits are getting a stylish makeover from three Finnish fashion brands.
1. Comfort first
Three years ago, textile designer Pauliina Leisti (see opening photo) founded Alina Piu, an anagram of her first name, to fill a gap in the market – and her own wardrobe. “I noticed that most knits in stores were made of oil-based synthetic fibres that don’t wear well and are bad for the environment. I wanted to make high-quality pieces that are long-wearing and ethically produced,” she explains.
Starting with knitted scarves and beanies, she added timeless dresses, cardigans, and tops to the collection this autumn, which now fills the shelves and racks of her newly opened store on Annankatu in downtown Helsinki. alinapiu.com
2. Cashmere for good
Specialising in luxurious cashmere and cotton basics, Arela was founded ten years ago by designer Maija Arela, who now runs the company with daughters, Anni and Viivi. A sleek range of garments is available at the shop on Uudenmaankatu, where personnel offer tips to lengthen the life span of the knits and raise awareness of conscious consumerism. arelastudio.com
3. Rare breed
Founded by entrepreneur Heikki Timlin, Alpa makes knitted jumpers and accessories from soft and durable alpaca fibre, which is warmer than regular wool. All Alpa garments are designed by Timlin’s sister Ainomaria Haataja and produced in Europe in small batches. Alpa’s pop-up store will be open at the Sokos department store in Helsinki until the end of December. alpa.fi
Compiled and written by Laura Iisalo
This article is published in the December 2016 issue of Blue Wings.