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Now that we are closing the 4th year of the ”letti” -pattern (VIMMAprint by Maija Louekari), I am smiling and amazed at the same time. What is that braid I see here and there, almost everywhere.
On a best day, 2300 pairs of leggings with the ”Letti”-pattern have been sold. Twenty-three hundred! On that day (and a few following days) Vimma had a packaging frenzy. Vimma home was filled with young, quick fingers, and everyone worked hard so no one would be left without. And still someone did. The beauty of the pattern is there will always be someone new with a new order, no matter how much you try to do your best and the production is increasing.
In the very beginning we had to fix a lot of the butt seams of the ”Letti”-leggings. There were batches that just would not meet the Vimma quality requirements.
”They were our growing pains. Of course it was unfortunate we could not meet the trust and expectations of our customers, but we decided to make our product three times stronger”, says the CEO of Vimma, Marjut Rahkola.
When you wear the ”Letti”-leggings 24 hours a day, you feel a change of colour seems appropriate. As a result, the original black and white print got new and different colour schemes on the side. The good thing is that Maija’s eye for colours always comes up with new colour combinations, of which Marjut picks out her favourites and tones them to her liking. ”Thinking about new worlds and ideas I have always trusted a hunch, an inner instinct of what will be the new hot thing tomorrow.”
The excitement for ”Letti”-pattern is created by customers, Vimma did not deliberately plan it out this way. It’s a series of very fortunate events. ”Maybe it also involves a desire to be a part of something big and united”, Marjut ponders.
The story of ”Letti” is just as old as that of Vimma. At the same time when new ideas about a brand for children’s clothing were brought to life at a playground bench, visions of a very own Vimma-print were thrown in the air. Playing with her children at that same playground, Pattern designer Maija Louekari, caught the ball Marjut threw at her.
“When Marjut told me she was planning on creating her own clothing brand for children, I told her immediately I would be interested in creating patterns if she was interested! I sketched the braids of my daughter, Stella, for the ”Letti”-print. There it is, illustrated the moment of a mother and daughter with a hint of motherly love slipped into the braids. Now, years later we have seen Stella’s braids worn by all people, big and small, all around the world.”
”When the first teaser was released and we started modelling the ready braid pattern for legs, arms, head and everywhere, it was perfect from the first moment”, Marjut remembers.
The CEO has watched the hype, that has evolved around the braid pattern, in awe. ”Though I understand the fascination of the ”Letti”-print and I love it myself, it is not the foundation of the Vimma identity. We have plenty of other amazing patterns. Any designer has a good chance to challenge this at any given moment. By its success, ”Letti” has, in a very short time, made things possible for Vimma that would have otherwise been impossible to make come true, and I am truly grateful for that.”