Founded in the early 1980s by Gerdur Kristjansdottir, Icelandic Design has always been a labor of love. Gerdur, a native of Reykjavik, Iceland, comes from a long line of well-skilled craftspeople in knitting and embroidery, and her passion for that history comes through in the clothing she designs. Gerdur learned the trade of knitting at the age of seven from her mother who used to make the entire family’s clothes and wool socks to stay warm through the harsh Icelandic winters. Summers would find Gerdur sheering sheep on her uncle’s sheep farm. The shorn wool would be spun by a neighbor and turned into lovingly-constructed warm wool sweaters for the coming winter.
Icelandic Design’s goal is to create ‘wearable art’ and this is done through the care and training of small, localized workforces close to the source of all of our materials. We seek to employ knitters who can mostly work out of their homes so they can stay close to their families. We’ve developed long-term relationships with many of the knitters in other countries, such as Nepal, Peru and China, who manufacture for Icelandic Design.
After over 30 years of pouring her heart and soul into the brand, Gerdur decided she was ready to move on and wanted to ensure that Icelandic Design would be taken over by a company with a history of good business practices and a commitment to producing high-quality apparel. Sportif USA fit that bill and will continue to work with the Icelandic Design team and factories to create well-constructed knits for women who enjoy fine fashion. Icelandic Design is now a part of a family of brands that date back to 1965 and have been family-owned and operated from the start.