Tag "Marimekko"


I’m sure this will sound more than a little ridiculous, but I got a bit teary-eyed when I saw the new Weather Diary collection from Marimekko for the first time on Saturday night. You know how sometimes you have a picture in your head of exactly what something (a sweater, a chair, a plate…whatever) should look like, but it’s a little bit like a dream because it never actually materializes in front of you? I suppose that’s the moment when artists decide to create; to make real the thing they want to see. The rest of us wait for someone else to do it. I feel like Marimekko just did it for me. This is exactly what I wanted. Did I know that before I saw it? I can’t remember anymore.

The collection, inspired by Finnish weather patterns and named for islands in the archipelago, was designed by Aino-Maija Metsola. Over a period of several months, Metsola documented changes in weather along the Finnish shoreline through photographs (a number of which can be seen accompanying this interview), which then became sketches and in turn watercolor and ink illustrations. The resulting designs were printed on textiles as well as on Sami Ruotsalainen’s Oiva tableware. Collaboration between Metsola and Ruotsalainen centered around a the idea of dishes to be used for “simple picnics and cottage meals: crepes, wild mushroom soup, freshly baked coffee bread.”

Video direction by Ezra Gould at Cocoa for Marimekko

I feel like crawling inside of that video. Yesterday marked the official start of fall, and I couldn’t be happier. This is the best time of year as far as I’m concerned. Everything seems cleaner, fresher and more vibrant. There’s a sense of urgency to try to get done all of the outdoor things you can before winter comes (or before it starts raining), and a relief over not having to sweat under a blazing sun while it happens. I always think of fall as the beginning of the year, probably because I still associate it with starting a new year at school. It’s also my birthday season. The timing could not be more perfect…

Some words from Aino-Maija Metsola about weather:
“I like many kinds of weather, including rain and wind. Finding yourself in thick fog or a thunderstorm can also be a surreal experience. Of course, I’m not a big fan of unrelenting rain. Changes in weather are also inspiring if, like me, you’ve learned to dress according to the weather by living on an island. I don’t particularly dislike any weather, except perhaps too warm and drizzly winter weather. Every shower, drizzle or cloudburst is unique and beautiful in its own way. When it’s raining, everything seems to stop for a moment, which I enjoy somehow.”

Weather Diary, my favorites…


1. Rosala poster
2. Sääpäiväkirja teapot
3. Sääpäiväkirja bowl
4. Sääpäiväkirja dinner plate
5. Sääpäiväkirja salad platter
6. Hiittinen tea towel set
7. Sääpäiväkirja mug
8. Small Sääpäiväkirja bowl

The entire Weather Diary collection is now available. I’m going to have a very hard time figuring out which piece (pieces?) will be coming home to live with me! I don’t need a teapot, but I want THAT teapot. Same goes for the tea towels — aside from being good for drying dishes, they’d also be so nice made into pillows (!) or even in a frame. And all I can think about is wild mushroom soup and freshly baked coffee bread…


I have a problem with buying mugs. I love coffee (and tea, and spiced almond milk), and there’s just something about drinking it from a perfectly-weighted, beautifully-designed mug that makes the whole experience so much nicer. I’m not content to stop with a set of 8 matching mugs, though—no, I need to keep buying more and more mugs (usually in pairs, with the odd single here and there) and consequently finding more and more places to stash them. There are certain ones I prefer for weekday mornings, others that feel right on a Sunday, and the ones I gravitate toward when I’m being stupid and drinking coffee at 10:00 at night.

coffee mugs

1. Bono mugs by Catharina Kippel, Design House Stockholm

Of all of the mugs featured here, these are the only ones I own. Actually, I only own the two in the top row—I have four of each! For a short period of time several years ago, C&B was selling these mugs individually for a great price, so I stocked up out of fear that they’d break easily and then I’d be sad. Happily, they’re all still in great shape! When I have guests, these are the mugs I serve coffee in. They’re also the ones Evan and I use most frequently on weekends. I love love love them.

2. Black Dot mugs, Schoolhouse Electric

I’m obsessed with these mugs. Every time I see a picture of one on Jen’s Instagram, I am filled with lust and greed. Don’t they just look like they’d be so nice to hold?! The little ones are particularly well-proportioned. I love how creamy the white is…I bet they’d look really good in my kitchen.

3. Yellow Fire-King mug, Vint

I’m a sucker for bright yellow, and I love Fire-King glassware. I saw this mug at Vint last night and had to force myself to not buy it. It’s like drinking out of a lemon! Perfect for tea.
Vint is kindly offering a 16% discount for anything in the shop until 12/20. Use the code DOOR16 at checkout!

4. Black Harlequin and Gold Harlequin Thermo mugs, Ferm Living

I pretty much want everything at Ferm Living, these mugs included. I was concerned about the lack of handles at first (I have a few handle-less mugs, and I always wind up having to hold them with napkins), but then I realized they’re actually “thermo” mugs. They have a dual-wall design, so your coffee stays nice and hot inside, but the part that touches your hand is cool. Neat!

coffee mugs

5. Arne Jacobsen letter cups, Finnish Design Shop

Yeah, I know I just said I’m averse to handle-less mugs, but LOOK AT THESE. Worth the burns. (Or, you know, you could keep pencils in them. Or let your coffee cool down and stop being so impatient.) I first spotted these letter cups at Design Milk months and months ago, and I can’t stop thinking about them. The typography dates back to Arne Jacobsen’s signage design for Aarhus City Hall from 1937, and it still looks fresh and modern today. I’d love to have a digitized version of this typeface for my own use!

6. Tu Es La Vague cup, House of Rym

The entire House of Rym product line is beautiful. The ceramics are designed by Swedes Anna Backlund and Elisabeth Dunker (my favorite!). It’s probably not enough to just buy one cup, though, since they look so great when combined with a mismatched saucer as part of a mismatched set. So many pretty photos of all of the options on Elisabeth’s blog!

7. Stig Lindberg Bersa cup & saucer, Huset

Eternal wish-list item. Sigh. What is it with Swedes and ceramics? What is it with Swedes and everything? I’ve been dreaming about owning a set of Stig Lindberg cups and saucers for years, but they look so delicate. I’d probably drop them all in the first week and be sad forever. So pretty from afar, though.

8. Silkkikuikka Mug, Marimekko

Any mug with FIVE Ks in its name is good enough for me! I can tell you from experience that the handles on Marimekko mugs are perfectly positioned for maximum comfort. They’re a pleasure to hold, and small enough that your coffee doesn’t cool down too much before you get to the bottom.

OK, now I want coffee…

I finally took some photos of the new apartment that aren’t iPhone snapshots! We rented this place three months ago, and since then I’ve really been struggling to make it feel right and OK. Even though the building the apartment is more than 120 years old, the interior was completely gutted a year ago. It’s just such a sharp contrast to our fixer-upper Victorian house (not to mention just about every apartment I’ve rented previously), and it feels very hotel-like to me. I’ve tried to compensate by treating it like a dorm room!

I do like how the bedroom is looking, and really, even just having a separate bedroom is a wonderful improvement over our old studio. Evan and I often operate on very different schedules, so there’s no telling how many humans (or dogs) will be in the apartment or the house on a given day or night. Having a distinct area for sleeping makes everything feel a bit more normal for everyone.

Sorry all of these photos look kind of the same! The bedroom is really only about 10’x10′, which is pretty tiny. It’s hard to stand far enough away to really get good shots, but I tried my best.

The “reversed-socks” table is pretty cute, right? It’s from West Elm, but I think it’s discontinued because it was a floor sample clearance item. That awesome lamp is by Brendan Ravenhill, and the cloud pillow came from La Casita. The cross blanket, of course, is by Pia Wallén. Daniel and Valeria at Hindsvik made the big ampersand. Oh! And the bed itself is a discontinued model from IKEA.

I’m in love with that acid green-footed candlestick. I rarely go into Bo Concept, but I spied this guy through the window recently and ran in for a better look. It’s part of a whole collection. Don’t they look great all in a row? And yeah, I did try to spruce up the ugly built-in heating/air-conditioning unit with some neon washi tape. I don’t know if it’s helping, but it was a fun way to spend 30 seconds! That great print was made by my friend Lisa Congdon. I was with Lisa and Victoria when I bought that little bowl at Marimekko (the new flagship store in NYC is wonderful!). I keep my jewelry in it at night.

I keep meaning to blog about that “alarm clock.” It’s actually just a block of wood with no electronic parts! It was designed by Jonas Damon for Areaware (it comes in a bunch of colors now, too—when I bought mine this was the only option), and it’s really just an iPhone stand. You can run a cord through the back so you can charge your phone while using it like a flip clock! They have an app that you can download and everything. Very cool, especially for people like me who use already use their iPhones as alarm clocks.

I’m really, really happy with this shelving. We only keep a handful of books at the apartment at any given time (the big “library” lives at the house), but I was getting tired of having little stacks of books and DVDs gathering dust on the floor. The shelves are comprised of two sets of steel EXBY OXIE brackets from IKEA ($20 for two) and six EKBY TRYGGVE pine shelves ($3 each). Grand total? $58 for a pretty substantial amount of shelving that looks good and doesn’t take up most space. The brackets are so great. I’m sure IKEA will discontinue them soon since they’re one of those “sleeper” items that doesn’t get much notice, so I might have to stock up on a few more sets just in case.

And yes, the Morrissey poster! I bought it exactly 20 years ago at Rhino Records in New Paltz. It’s been hanging on my wall in the vicinity of my bed ever since. Much like the Smiths poster on the dining room mantel at the house, it’s a constant. I loved these things when I was 16 years old, and I love them now at 36. I think teenagers have an inherently good sense of what makes you feel good in your own space, and I’ve tried not to lose that as I’ve gotten older. Too often grown-ups get sucked into the idea that their homes need to look “adult” or sophisticated or whatever. Not me! I say bring on the giant Morrissey heads, the over-sized ampersands, and the stuffed cloud pillows.

Photos via Marimekko

Noora Niinikoski’s Tivoli knitware line for Marimekko’s Fall 2011 line was pretty spectacular. And also pretty wacky. When I look at the composed outfits, my first thought is that I want to wear all of it, including the red clogs, immediately. I’m pretty sure I’d literally look like a clown, but you only go around once, right? I tend to be extremely subdued in my dress (though contrary to popular belief, I don’t only wear black), mainly because I prefer to blend in to my environment rather than stand out. For some reason, the opposite extreme is also appealing to me!

I’m pretty sure the last time I ventured into the world of “funky” (OH, HOW I LOATHE THAT WORD) legware was a good 20 or so years ago (as evidenced here), but maybe it’s time to go down that road again. Am I old enough to have reached that point where I can look like an idiot but have it get written off as eccentricity? I hope so, because I’ve always wanted to wear a pom-pom scarf around my head like a turban. There is always the fear that I’d wind up looking like a giant infant, of course.

A few pieces from the Tivoli line are on sale right now at Kiitos Marimekko, and I am seriously tempted. Maybe just the knee socks…

I’m in love with the new Komeetta Collection for Marimekko’s Fall 2009 line.

The clothes are designed by Mika Piirainen, and use textiles designed by Marimekko mainstays Maija & Kristina Isola.

I really like what Tom Dixon has been doing since becoming the Creative Director of Artek several years ago (2nd cycle, collaboration with twentytwentyone, the amazing towers assembled for the 75th anniversary of Aalto’s Stool 60, etc.), but the “Artek White” line of Alvar Aalto classics really takes the cake.

Of course I love Aalto’s furniture in its original birch-plus-color form, but seeing them in this monochromatic state really makes me appreciate the sculptural quality of each piece in a whole new way.

What really did me in, though, was seeing this hot little number in person at the UES Marimekko Concept Store last Friday:

Ahhh, Finnish textiles and Finnish furniture, two great tastes that taste great together! Yes, it’s a Stool 60 in Artek White, upholstered with Varvunraita fabric from Marimekko. SO beautiful!

And yes, I did immediately think about painting a Frosta stool from IKEA white and upholstering it with a Varvunraita tea towel. $23 versus $425? Tempting!! I also suddenly feel like painting my Ånes bed white…

(all photos © Artek)