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Brand To Know: AALTO International

Get to know the Finnish label whose street-meets-structure aesthetic is winning the hearts (and wallets) of fashion's coolest.

Out of the many luxury fashion brands on the market, one that comes from Helsinki, Finland, is hard to come by. For AALTO International, being based in Paris meant bigger opportunities, and they were not wrong.

Bringing the Finnish youth culture to the world was something that resonated with founder Tuomas Merikoski, something he made happen in the year 2014 with his knowledge and background of working freelance with fashion houses Louis Vuitton and Givenchy.

Merikoski’s work always revolves around contrast and cultures, with his latest one based on the “crazy Finnish secret side” of love, reinterpreting it into exaggerated sleeves, extended hemlines and bright colours. He’s also a big fan of architects Oscar Niemeyer and Alvar Aalto (who we highly suspect is the inspiration behind the brand name, but we could be wrong) which often shows through his well-structured designs. Contrast comes in many different forms for the brand, ranging from mixing masculinity and femininity together to a blend of Eastern and Western cultures. His collections are usually filled with deconstructed silhouettes, asymmetrical pieces and layered over one another.

AALTO has collaborated with artists on many occasions, with illustrators like Sami Saramäki, Jouko Lehtola Foundation or choreographer Ima Iduozee. Merikoski has also mentioned in an interview, that he is a designer and not an artist, therefore it is wonderful to collaborate with people who can view things in a different perspective. It’s interesting to see how he gives back to the Finnish community and how keeping in touch with his Finnish roots has turned into the highlight of his brand and the identity, which really is what makes them so unique.

The brand’s youthful and luxurious pieces have caught the likes of celebrity Hailey Baldwin as well as street style stars like Veronika Heilbrunner, Reese Blutstein (better known as @double3xposure) and Olga Karput. For now, their pieces are available on their website and locally at Club 21.

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