We love to be outdoors – even in the autumn and winter – and to feel the brisk wind nipping at our noses. And besides that, we also love to be cuddly, cozy, and warm on our outdoor adventures. That’s why we’re over the moon to see that the gorgeous leg warmers from Miriam and her label Sommer & Kinder are moving back into the online shop. Since they are made by hand, the quantities are quite small.
We asked Miriam a couple of questions about herself, her work, and her products:
Who are you and what do you love about your work?
I’m Miriam, I studied fashion design, and – after the birth of my first child – I started my own business under the children’s fashion label Sommer & Kinder. That’s where I turn my passion for knitting into reality!
What is your favorite material and why?
I only use natural materials, primarily Merino wool, and for summer I also use organic cotton. Wool exudes something so cuddly for me – I think that makes it perfect for kids!
What do values like sustainability and social responsibility mean to you?
Wherever possible, I try to keep an eye on sustainability in my everyday life and in my work. We have our products produced here in Germany – that way I can be sure that the working conditions are fair. Our clothing is timeless and many items are available in neutral colors. I have woolen trousers here that were worn by my daughter, then by my son, then by my youngest daughter. The quality is good, the clothes really last a long time. And I also try to teach my children to be careful and mindful with all their belongings, without encroaching on their childlike nature too much – at least I hope so!
Why do you produce by hand? Wouldn’t another way be a speedier ticket to success?
I made all the beanies I sold in the beginning by hand on a hand knitting machine. That’s mainly because I really enjoy doing it. I love this work in my little studio, and this way I can also cater to everyone’s color preferences. In the meantime, however, the quantities have increased and that’s why I’m working together with a small traditional knitting mill in Germany. But there as well, every seam is placed by hand, stitch for stitch, onto the link pins; machines can’t do that. As a matter of fact, all our clothes are handmade, except for the fabric. There is always someone sitting at the sewing machine, which is where the working conditions come into play.
Morel, Blue Spruce, Barberry, and Gingko – the leg warmers from the 2020 Autumn/Winter collection
What was the wildest thing you ever did? Or when was the last time you felt wild and free?
Right now I am making one of my childhood dreams come true by learning to ride a horse! When I’m galloping I feel pretty wild and free!
Are there any childlike qualities that you have retained to this day? What is one thing that has always stayed with you ever since you were little?
Actually there’s a lot (some good and maybe some not so good!). One thing I love, especially at Christmas time, from all the way back when I was very little, is noshing on cookie dough – I did that with my mom and now I do it with my kids!
What are your hopes for a sustainable future?
I would like us all to consume less. It’s relatively easy for me. Of course my kids want to have everything they see and everything that other kids have. Here in Berlin’s city center, there is tremendous choice. I feel that if we were to compensate people in every country in the world adequately for their work, we would think more carefully about what we really want to buy, which would greatly benefit us all and our environment.
What has been your experience with Wildlings?
I’ve had Wildings for as long as there have been Wildlings, and so have my kids – and I love them. Over time, they’ve just gotten even more beautiful!
Thank you for the interview, Miriam, and
Run wild - Anna, Ran & Team Wildling
Cover photo: Wildling Shoes/Sandra Dienemann