About Our Nordic
AITI’s founder Ritva Kariniemi began her extensive career after moving from her native Finland to study at London College of Fashion in the late 1970’s. After completing her education, Ritva stayed on to work with designers such as Bill Gibb and Benny Ong. Gaining invaluable experience, she began designing for manufacturers known for supplying to popular high street shops.
In 1984, Extravert by Ritva Kariniemi was born. A collection which reinvented the use of Lycra in fashion by specialising in women’s stretch, drape separates and knits. After years of growing in popularity, Extravert was recognised and received the prestigious Queen’s Award for Export Achievement in 1991. Following Extravert’s success, Ritva had two self-named, standalone shops in Japan.
The name ÄITI, meaning ‘Mother’ in Finnish, was inspired by the personal experience of motherhood for Ritva. After establishing a career in interior design, she decided to return to her roots of Nordic Fashion and knitwear in 2016. The vision for AITI was simple: to create and produce timeless, yet wearable and affordable knitwear that will outlive fashion fads. Ritva embodies the Nordic Style with the use of sustainably sourced materials such as wool, cotton and cashmere as well as newer sustainable fibre blended yarns from highly regarded yarn suppliers. The collection often features co-ordinated scarves and shawls for a completed look.
Keeping in close contact with her factory, Ritva designs the clothing and co-ordinates the samples and production thus creating a closely curated collection of designer knitwear. The AITI pieces are understated, stylish, lovely to wear and affordable. The look is contemporary but timeless with a clean and simple silhouette that transcends seasons and appeals to women of all ages.