October 10, 2011

Finnish Icon: Marimekko

Time for a Finnish icon.

Maybe you've heard of Marimekko. Maybe you have seen the patterns but don't realize what it is. Or maybe you already live in it's crazy style. But I certainly know what I am bringing back with me this year. Marimekko tableware, fabric, bedding, bathroom decorations, clothing, I love it all.

How awesome and unique are these prints?!? (source)
If only we had a house to decorate it all with :)

But when we do, my semi-vintage style will be fronted with hints of Marimekko design here and there. And why not get the 'original' while we are here?!

Food would taste that much better off of these (source)

Marimekko was founded in 1951 in Helsinki by husband and wife team Vilijo and Armi Ratia. It originally started as a oilcloth factory that, unfortunately, didn't quite make it. The couple regrouped and converted the factory into a garment plant and convinced a few artisctic friends to help with graphic designing. The line started producing wildly colorful fabrics and was eventually turned into clothing, bags and interior decorations to help sell the textile. And there you have it, the most iconic designs out of Finland was born.


 Highly successful in the 60s and 70s, Marimekko somewhat declined in the 80s and early 90s after Armi Ratias death. But the company was bought by Kirsti Paakkanen in the early 90s, after which the brand started growing, strengthening and profiting exponentially. Concept stores can be found worldwide and the brand and famous bright prints are sure to be timeless.

Fashion icons like Jackie Kennedy and Sarah Jessica Parker in Marimekko (source)

Nothing like adding a little punch of color to your wardrobe and house!

And I just found out there is a factory outlet less than an hour away. Booyaa! I know what I'm getting for Christmas. Now, how much can I smuggle back to the U.S....
And that is about as 'girly' as I get on here :) That was kind of a "More You Know Monday", right??

I've got a great little piece in the works. So expect a fun travel tid bit later this week. So, start your week off with a good ol' heart warming feeling! And have a great Monday!

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  1. Yeah, those prints really are fabulous. Have a great week!

  2. Awesome prints! Now I have to figure out where to buy them in the United States...

  3. Wow...love Marimekko!

    Almost forgot that I wallpapered one of our kid's bedrooms years ago using a fabulous Marimekko design called "Bo Boo".

    What fun...hope you do another post on what you find at that outlet!!

    Happy Monday!

  4. OMIGOD! I LOVE Marimekko - but always thought it was Japanese!!!! How embarrassing ... but I say in my defence that I'm way down the other end of the world ...

  5. I've never heard of Marimekko but I'm definitely going to check it out now! Some of those prints are awesome. Can't wait to see what sort of clothes there are!!

  6. You are heading a long way from truck nuts with this post aren't you. Actually my eyes needed some soothing patterns after last weeks posting. I will be sure to pass this post to my vintage crafting friends. (They are not vintage, just their crafting - thought I'd better clear that up)

  7. @iZombie - Marco? haha
    @Lora - you too, thanks!
    @Angela - you can have a look at their website, or I bet ebay has stuff for sure too
    @Patty - how cool is that?! I bet it looked awesome, and super 70s. Too cool. I will for sure have to do another post when I head to the outlets!
    @Red Nomad - I had heard of it before, but was not familiar, and totally thought it was Japanese too!! So you and I are in the same boat. Glad you love it!
    @Erin - such awesome stuff for the house. Even just the fabric. You'll have to check it out!
    @SFlaGuy - I thought everyone could use a little down time after that last picture, haha. Haha, thanks for clarifying, I just thought they were really old, lol.

  8. I'm shocked that declined in the 80s. haha

  9. I have seen this before - how cool! I didn't know it was Finnish!

  10. Those prints are beautiful!! Please do a post once you buy anything from them!

  11. Oh my they are just so pretty!!!Loving their cups!!! However, I bet some of their dresses are the ultimate girly items :-) Have fun shopping!!!!

  12. I like the middle one, top row of the first picture.

  13. Love the colours and the patterns! So very cool.

  14. My art knowledge is awful, but this reminds me of the style that Cake album covers are done in.

  15. I recognize the look and the name, but didn't know the two together:) I like it! Finnish pride!

  16. Don't miss shopping at Iittala and Arabia, either!! (I need to figure out where to buy the Moomin collection in the States... I grew up with those books!)

  17. @Copyboy - haha, seriously! They should have eaten this up that decade.
    @Meg O - hey, maybe it was a 'the more you know Monday' lol. Aren't they so unique!?
    @Summer - I sure will, I really have to get to that outlet!
    @Missy - Aren't those dishes great. What a subtle way to have it all in your house. Thanks girl!
    @Joshua - Great choice! I am partial to the lower right hand side, the ultimate bright 80s look. Pretty much always my go to :)
    @Deidre - very creative minds here, for sure!
    @A Beer - Wow, no, that was pretty good. Not a bad comparison. You would have definitely passes Art Appreciation 101, lol.
    @Meri - Haha, I should just yell that when I see the patterns at store. Finnish Pride!!
    @Hockey - There is an Ititala outlet soooo close too! They are both great. Just harder to take back with you in a suitcase ;) Ohhh, thanks for the tip on Moomin, I will have to look into those!

  18. ive never heard of this stuff, but i sure have seen it!!!!! how cool it comes from finland?!?!? you definitely have to bring a bunch back to the US! :)

  19. Suddenly I want to start covering my house with these designs..... and not just because they are so colorful that just by waking it up would either make me think of hundreds of rainbows, or would make my eyes bleed.....

    Somewhere in that comment there is a compliment, I swear!

  20. I love it! I love the european patterns!

  21. Love the patterns--and the dresses--don't even get me started! Vintage always adds flare to a bouquet, or a couch...your body! Have a Terrific Tuesday :)

  22. Am I the only one who maybe, actually, kinda likes it? Don't kill me...actually, dont tell my husband, lol!

  23. Wow, at first I was like WHOA holy crazy prints! And then I saw the dishes. I am hooked. And of course Jackie O and SJP look good in anything. That does not mean those dresses would look good on me though. They are definitely bold!

  24. @Megan - and when you say bring, you mean smuggle massive amounts and make a profit, right :)
    @JOutlaw - haha, somewhere, I will keep looking...Nah, it is pretty bright and vintage, but awesome, lol.
    @Sarah - haha, it is pretty Euro, that's for sure. Just enough to give it that edge.
    @Morgan - love me some vintage flair too. Glad you like!
    @An Irish - heck no, I like it too. Just have slashes of it in the kiddos room, could be fun!
    @Kyria - Haha, well they aren't always for clothes, people hang the fabric like art. So that would be neat. And yes, they always look good in everything. Bold is the perfect adj for them!

  25. I LOVE Marimekko!!
    And my Danish mother-in-law is actually Finnish (adopted during the war) so she is quite proud that I have it in my home!


Whoomp, there it is!