Can an entrepreneur stay on maternity leave?

MORICO believes in the power of a collective: founder Tytti Alapieti can stay on maternity leave with confidence when a group of freelancers who believe in the revolution of sustainable and ethical clothing was found around. 

 

Although the MORICO winter collection 2020 Hiding Sun will not be launched until one weeks from now, the plans of Tytti Alapieti, the founder and creator of the slow fashion brand, are well underway in the 2021 seasons.

Soon, however, the sketches must be dared to be passed on to others, as Tytti is facing a revolutionary life change. By the same time the Hiding Sun winter collection is released, Tytti will become a mother.

Many entrepreneurs may not be able to take maternity leave at all, but Tytti has arranged things so that she can stay completely in the background for a while. It is possible because the tasks previously under her sole responsibility are now shared among several professionals.

“I'm grateful that I've found people who share the love of slow fashion and ethical clothing. Of course, there is excitement when there is such a big life change ahead and the future can no longer be planned as before. However, I am confident that all the dreams and important things can be combined and do not exclude each other,” Tytti smiles.

MORICO by Mori Collective slow fashion designer Tytti Alapieti

Tytti wearing the Wanderer Dress - Kaarnikka from Hiding Sun Collection

Sustainable clothing is a co-creation of like-minded artists

In general, the MORICO collections are designed and manufactured close to the next season. This autumn, however, both this winter, next summer and winter 2021 have been made at the same time.

Thanks are due, among other things, to the brand's trainee, Johanna Siuruainen, who is studying textile design. She has designed textiles for the 2021 winter collection in addition to the jewelry and t-shirt prints that will be launched in a few months. Siuruainen's designs are a beautiful mix of playful colors and different materials, and implementation methods.

“Johanna is amazing! Her ideas fit together really well with ours and bring continuity to our previous collections. We hope that the cooperation with Johanna will continue,” Tytti says.

Friends of MORICO have added their golden touch in the prints and patterns of the label from the very beginning. The Kultakero print of the new Hiding Sun winter collection has been designed by Tytti's snowboarding companion, an illustrator, and a graphic artist Suvi Suitiala. The Crystal Seeker, The Dark Matter, Huurre, and Helle patterns familiar from previous summers are made by an illustrator Eija Vehviläinen.

“It’s great that there are talented illustrators in our circle of friends who want to design patterns for us. In a small business, it’s wonderful to share ideas and do things together with others, and then see the result, which is something you couldn’t even imagine yourself,” Tytti says.

A collective is the business model of the future

The sustainable clothing company, founded by two fashion designers, Tytti Alapieti and Jenni Koli, has in five years become a team of several different artists and designers as well as marketing and sales professionals. They are all united by an interest in slow fashion as well as a love for nature and snowboarding.

After Jenni became a freelance designer and Tytti went on maternity leave, Milja Horneman, who is responsible for business development, and Samuli Salmikivi, who is responsible for day-to-day operations, will look after the ethical line of sustainable and organic dresses, jackets, and pants.

Milja has long been the backbone of the company as a sparrer and support in business development. Now, she has also become one of the owners of the brand.

“Visualization has always been important to me, and now I can see from the very beginning until the end, how beautiful and ethical clothes can arise in respect of the environment and the community in which they are created,” Milja says.

While there is plenty to do for others on Tytti’s maternity leave, Horneman believes the change is an opportunity to develop a small business as well. 

“Fortunately, we have already found more factors, with which the development will certainly succeed,” Milja says.

Samuli takes over online orders, warehouse and store maintenance, and customer service. The first, is the Christmas market, which will move completely this year to the online environment, the brand’s own online store and retailer platforms.

“I am an artisan, so my interest in the MORICO brand comes from my values. This is the first time since my school that I have become a part of a fashion company,” Samuli says.

Ethical, sustainable and organic clothing is the only way

Samuli Salmikivi is fascinated by responsibility but also by timeless design. He is also interested about the future of fashion.

“I also want to go to the moon and back,” Samuli says and refers to the MORICO brand's motto – slow fashion to the moon and back.

Jenni Koli, a founding member who designed the swimsuit patterns for the summer 2021 collection, continues with projects related to the visual look of the MORICO brand.

According to Jenni, slow fashion is the only right way in the clothing business.

“The world is drowning in textiles and disposable culture needs to change. Clothes should be treasures that you want to treat well. When you buy a new one, buy quality. Always consider before shopping,” Jenni reminds.

The fashion entrepreneur demands solutions for the recycling of the Finnish maternity kit

Tytti is delighted that flea markets now have almost all the necessary children's clothing and accessories.

“There are also many wonderful children's clothing brands in Finland that have responsible production and sustainable, organic or recycled, materials,” Jenni says.

Although Alapieti herself has acquired everything she needs from flea markets or borrowed from friends, she considers the Finnish maternity kit to be an ingenious invention.

“The responsibility of maternity packaging and the transparency of the origin of products have been increased in recent years, and hopefully this aspect will be emphasized more in the future. However, more solutions should be found for the recycling of maternity kits,” says Tytti, who studied for a master's degree in clothing and textile technology at the Tampere University of Technology.

MORICO by Mori Collective slow fashion designer Tytti Alapieti Hiding sun new collection