The Clothes: More of the brand’s pop-inspired, signature cheerful and bouncy prints on bell-shaped shift dresses, boxy sheaths, caftans, blousy tunics, puckered top tie-front sundresses, and floppy bucket hats. It was impossible not to smile, looking at big polkadots and blown-out poppies and daisy petals. Patterns ranged from abstract to more structured. In the abstract category, giant painterly Van Gogh-esque swirls melted into neutral ivory and purple pastels. Scritch-and-scratch tick marks and fish scales in white and black were systematic in execution. One pattern looked like a mélange of horizontal Marimekko factory scraps sewn together to produce a happy, tropical collage. Marimekko is particularly dexterous at combining colors to evoke a general uplifting emotion.
The Hair & Makeup: Winged out swaths of green, pink and yellow, “bright and crisp colors,” that were a cross between “eyeliner and eyeshadow,” MAC Pro Makeup Artist Lyne Desnoyers told me backstage. MAC Acrylics, an opaque eyeshadow paint, was applied extending from the inner corner of the eye, following the crease, but leaving the entire center of the eyelid bare. Like a Pantone x MAC collaboration.
The Soundtrack: Bright and instrumental.
The Vibe: Like everyone drank happy juice. Ebullient and relaxed, with models smiling and walking comfortably in Marimekko x Converse sneakers, it felt like a nostalgic welcome-back to a heritage brand.
The Front Row: Mickey Boardman, Cameron Silver, bloggers like Keiko Lynn and Kelly Framel.
Celebrity We’d Most Like to See Wearing this Collection: Any cute mother and daughter pairs. Suri Cruise and Katie Holmes, Jennifer Garner and Violet Affleck, Michelle Obama and her daughters.
WTF Moment: This is more of an ‘Aww’ moment. Photographers cheered as modeling legends Carol Alt, Carmen Dell’Orefice, and Pat Cleveland made their way down the runway. The legendary models took their time, beaming and serenely swanning down the runway. Carmen got so comfortable that she did the finale walk, sans shoes. I noticed it was hard for Sessilee Lopez to break her “model face,” and join the others in joyful smiling.
What Mika Ihamuotila, Marimekko President, Had to Say: “The inspiration was driven by colors. Marimekko has a very special talent in combining colors. With colors, you bring happiness [and] hope to people. In this great world, when people can feel threatened and [like] honesty has gone away from the world, Marimekko’s colors and combination of colors and patterns encourage people to be happy, open and positive towards other people. Fashion and design can be a vehicle to change people for the better.”
“When we inspire our designers, we always say to them, ‘Never try to please the market. Don’t do something you think is trendy today.’ I often as a CEO say, ‘Let’s not be too commercial and please that segment of the market. Go to your own sensitivities, go to your own art, and do something that you think is relevant at this moment.’”
This is a contrast to the fashion industry, which is so pressured by the seasons and things like, what is the hot yellow for the season. We want to be far away from that.”
Swag: A Marimekko printed tote bag with Spring/Summer lookbooks and a history book of Marimekko patterns.