Woolish is a uniquely Estonian brand through and through, with a legacy that extends far back through Estonia’s incredible history. The very first knit in Woolish’s historic yarn came from Hilda Valdre in the 1890’s. Hilda had a daughter, Daisy, who shared her mother’s love of knitting. Carrying on the tradition as a knitter for Uku - Estonia’s largest knitting cooperative - Daisy helped produce wool sweaters worn throughout the Soviet Union.
Daisy’s daughter - Külli - quickly learned the craft while sitting at her mother’s feet. Her most vivid childhood memory was of a house that smelled only of wool and a living room so filled with sweaters that you could barely see through them to watch TV. Külli actually dreamt of a career in dentistry (!) and had no plans to enter into the family business.
The powerful pull of her lifelong connection to wool proved too strong, however, and Külli eventually found herself running a successful business manufacturing sweater for Scandinavian countries, utilizing their national colours and designs.
Time and again, fate intervened to keep the family connected to wool. Once, when she couldn’t afford to buy an expensive and desperately needed new knitting machine, the Woolish nature of the universe once again revealed itself. Külli was randomly selected to appear on the TV game show Bingo Loto. Lo and behold, she ended up winning 10,000 kroons! A Woolish miracle! This incredible manifestation of Woolish’s wild and wooly destiny jumpstarted the company and pulled the wool over the family’s eyes once and for all. So to speak. :)
Külli’s son, Eigo, partnered with his wife, Anna, to take over the business in 2015. Together, they’ve pointed the brand’s knitting needles straight toward the future. The family still takes an active hand in channeling that undying Woolish spirit: Eigo designs much of the menswear and Anna, the womenswear. As accomplished collegiate athletes, both have extensive backgrounds in track and field (Anna’s father is an actual, honest-to-goodness Olympic medalist!). Their active, sporty lifestyle and athletic experience brings an entirely new influence to the brand - uniquely stylish designs that breathe and move with you while still reflecting the company’s proud traditions of comfort and quality. Just try doing yoga in any other brand’s wool clothing!
When you’ve worked with wool for as long as we have, you acquire a lot more than just goofy Woolish puns. Our knowledge and appreciation of wool runs blood deep; it’s a part of our very DNA.
As the fourth generation of Woolish-chosen craftspeople, Eigo and Anna happily accept that the magical “pull of the wool” is stronger than ever. In fact, the influence of the fifth Woolish generation is already being felt: the active pursuits of their three children - Georg, Kristian, and Markus - are often the inspiration for modern new design ideas.
From simple, familial beginnings in the 1890’s, to the ubiquitous fashion of the former Soviet Union, to Scandinavian success and fateful encounters with destiny - the Woolish story has both surprised and amazed. Now, Woolish is poised to become truly universal as our stylish and infectious earth-y spirit spreads far and wide - a natural part of each and every one of our elegant creations shipped abroad.
The name of the brand is new - but the heritage behind our clothes is a century-old tale of drive, inspiration, family, talent, experience, craftsmanship and pride. We did very well with wool in the distant past - just watch us now that we have electricity and high speed wifi!
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