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Posts Tagged ‘design’

The iconic Finnish glassware, iittala, is 100 years old. They have turned blue to celebrate.

The window in Esplanadi looked amazing when I wandered past.

iittala

iittala

iittala

iittala

iittala

Here’s to the next 100 years.

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When I was in Helsinki late last year I was disappointed to find the main Marimekko shop on Esplanadi closed for renovation.

I returned earlier this year and was very pleased to see the newly renovated shop. It is not quite as big as before, and it is no longer on Esplanadi, but further down Mikonkatu.

Marimekko

Marimekko

Marimekko

Marimekko

 

Marimekko

Marimekko

It can also be entered via the Kampi shopping centre. There are several other places to buy Marimekko in Helsinki, but this one has always been my favourite.

 

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The iittala shop in Pohjoisesplanadi has been hard at work making their Christmas windows.

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iittala Helsinki

iittala

 iittala Helsinki

iittala Helsinki

 iittala Helsinki

iittala Helsinki

Call in and make your selections. I’ll have anything from the green window.

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In Lonnrotinkatu, the street named after him, is the monument to Elias Lonnrot. From old traditional short ballads and lyric poems he created the Finnish National epic, the Kalevala.

Elias Lonnrot was a physician, philologist and collector of traditional Finnish oral poetry. As well as this, he was a professor of Finnish language and literature at the University of Helsinki from 1853 – 1862. He promoted Finnish as a national language and paved the way for modern Finnish literature.

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Maija Isola’s classic poppy design was born in 1964. Marimekko‘s founder had announced that Marimekko would never print a flower pattern. Maija refused to obey and, in protest, created an entire series of beautiful floral prints. One of them was unikko (poppy) now one of Marimekko’s most famous and popular prints.

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I remember buying this print more than 30 years ago to make cushions and I now have a tablecloths, umbrellas and carry bags in this colourful design…long may it live.

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Finland is famous for beautiful design. Helsinki is a great place to shop for textiles and one of my favourite shops is Lapuan Kankurit.

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The family business has been in operation since 1917 with the opening of their first textile factory.
They use only natural, high quality materials…flax, cotton, Tencel, wool and mohair. They know where their fibres come from and are familiar with each stage of production. I think it shows in their divine finished products.

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I particularly like their linen products. Flax is a great ecological choice. It is an economical plant when it comes to water consumption. Grown in countries with temperate climates, flax requires no irrigation other than natural rain. Compared with cotton, flax requires no defoliants and very little pesticide.

It is also delightful to use linen products.

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Don’t miss their shop at Katariinankatu 1 in Helsinki.

www.lapuankankurit.fi

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I have been buying Marimekko fabrics for almost 40 years. The company was started just over 60 years ago and continues to produce beautiful designs. The shop on Espanadi is one of the first places I go when I am in Helsinki.

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Marimekko was founded in 1951 by Viljo and Armi Ratia. The company has become known for its bold, colourful patterns used on fabrics, dinnerware and home decoration. Jaqueline Kennedy made Marimekko popular in America when she wore their dresses on the 1960 Presidential Campaign. Under the current CEO Maeimekko has spread all over the world , taking their brightly coloured designs far and wide.

The shop is beautiful and I can never leave without buying something. There is a new print, which is actually an old print brought back to celebrate Helsinki being design capital for 2012. The print was first designed in 1952. I think is looks surprisingly modern.

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At the back entrance of the shop is a delightful area for children to play in.

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The Marimekko shop is on the corner of Pojoisesplanadi and Mikonkatu.
Take a little bit of Finland home with you.

http://marimekko.com

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