About us / Tietoa meistä

Who we are
1981 Helsinki was started in 2019 by Niina Klemetti and Paju Heinonen. We got fed up with the lack of sustainable clothing choices beyond vintage clothes. Don't get us wrong, we love vintage! We sell vintage at our store. The problem is that vintage gems are limited in size and style and not everyone can find pre-loved things they love. Our brand is focused on creating clothes that are unisex, ethically made and use up the least amount of resources possible.

We believe in slow fashion. We make small batches of clothes from recycled materials and sustainably produced materials. We make clothes that will last as long as the vintage beauties we sell, and our patterns are made to fit as many bodies as possible.

We chose the name 1981 Helsinki because we were both born that year. It was a great year: good music and oversized coats were everywhere. The style of that era also had a certain futuristic and minimalist vibe to it that we love. And a maximalist vibe as well, including pussy bows and extreme sleeves. We embrace both: we're minimally maximalist. That may not make any sense but it's ok, we're just doing what we love and hoping others love it too.

What we do
We design our own collections and prototype them together with pattern masters. We then source materials that work with our designs - be it 2nd hand fabrics, leftovers from fabric bolts, or sustainably produced new materials. We also are constantly searching for vintage clothes and accessories.

We make some of our clothes ourselves, and we also outsource the production of our clothing to local artisans. Everything we make under our brand name is made in Helsinki. We pay the makers a fair amount for their work, and nobody gets exploited in the production of these clothes.

Environmental policy

Our designs are based on wearability, durability, and sustainability. We create patterns that work with a variety of different fabric types and fit a variety of bodies, and designs that will look good now and in 10 years.

We also put a lot of effort into designing the pattern cutting layout for all our own patterns to minimize waste.

Our first choice for material is 2nd hand material or 100% recycled fiber. These materials can be difficult to find in sufficient amounts, so we do use new materials as well. When we source new materials, we look for the fabric bolt leftovers, organic fiber, and pay close attention to the recyclability of the material as well. We are constantly looking for new sustainably produced materials.

We produce our garments in Helsinki, Finland in small batches. Local small batch production means low impact in pre-consumer shipping - so far all our products have arrived to our store by public transport.

We aim to make only as much as we sell - this way we can respond directly to the needs and wants of our beloved customers and minimize the production of unnecessary things. A minimal amount of stored garments reduces our footprint in many ways.

As a small business we have a limited choice in shipping options for online sales. We use Posti and Matkahuolto for Finnish shipping and Posti for international shipping. You can find the environmental policy of Posti here in English and here in Finnish.

Everyday stuff
We aim for a completely paperless office. Our tags are printed on eco-friendly cardstock. Our logo tags are 100% organic cotton and vegan cork leather. We use energy-saving LED lighting in our store.




1981 Helsinki team

Elena Anipreeva: Kaavoitus & valmistus
Linda Viitanen: Kaavoitus & valmistus
Tuula Lönnqvist: Mallimestari & valmistus
Bottom row - Alarivi

Niina ”Klemis” Klemetti: Omistaja aka Boss Lady - suunnittelu & valmistus & markkinointi
Oksana Laine: Mallimestari & valmistus, Ompeluhuone Oxana
Paju Heinonen: Omistaja aka Boss Man - suunnittelu & neuletyöt & valmistus