Twenty five years ago, we got acquainted with Ecuador. Today we have whole villages working for us: over 700 women knitting our garments. Our own label INTI was born in 1992. We live in Ecuador half the year, the other half we spend in The Netherlands, visiting stores, events, fairs and companies. Our collection is available in around 120 stores throughout The Netherlands.
We love to work with stores and sales points that match us and our story, like Kuyichi, Vielgut (Eindhoven) and Nukahiva (Floortje Dessing’s stores). We believe in these good matches. We work with companies that, like us, have a passion for sustainability and people, and that have a heart for our handmade garments and materials. For example the wollen blankets we make for Katja Schuurman’s Return to Sender (watch the video here!)
Our materials and garments are made of the highest quality baby alpaca wool form Peru. Each knitter gets to keep a small amount of this exclusive wool for their own use. The rest is carefully weighed and processed into INTI items. Our approach is to make beautiful things, and enjoy doing that. And making beautiful things takes times, which is why we only make one collection each year.
The women we work with live in rather desolate villages. Their husbands often work in the cities and are away during the week; the children are at school. Working on INTI items gives these women a sense of purpose and their own source of income. They are free to plan their workload according to their needs and wishes. This resulted in some very lively communities of women exchanging instructions, experiences and techniques, checking stuff ad working together. Some of them have been knitting for us for over twenty years now. We think that is very special and a beautiful way of sustainable business.