Marimekko’s Mika Ihamuotila on Spring 2013, How New York is “More Open to New Thinking”

Sade Strehlke

Scandinavian line Marimekko showed its poppy, colorful and fun collection for the first time at New York Fashion Week this season. Mika Ihamuotila, the chief executive of the Finnish brand was on hand to give us his take on New York fashion, his favorite pieces in the collection and what inspired the bold, beautiful and color filled Spring 2013 collection. What type of girl would wear a Marimekko creation? The bold, beautiful and fearless type—think Twiggy meets Andy Warhol on a 1960s London street.

Stylecaster: What was the idea behind this fun collection?

Mika Ihamuotila: It was how colors, and combinations of colors can make people feel happy. Authenticity, being who you are. We feel that there is so much gray in the world and people are not happy and we wanted to play with the idea of how colors can bring joy and happiness to people.

How did you prep for New York Fashion Week?

It’s the first time we came to New York, so it was a big step for us, but somehow I have always felt that Marimekko belongs to America, even though we are a European brand. So for us it was like coming back to a second home.

What was different about showing in New York than in Europe?

New York Fashion Week is more open to new thinking than traditional European cities. That is one of the reasons why we are so happy to be here because Marimekko is not just about fashion or colors. It’s about a certain philosophy. We want to change the world and bring happiness to people. I think the New York audience is more open to new changes and thinking. So it felt natural to make this global fashion statement to the New York crowd.

Did you have a favorite piece?

I did have two or three, but just like my four sons I cannot say. They are really all my favorite.

And now that Fashion Week is over?

Lots of traveling. We will be opening stores all over the world: Shanghai, Palo Alto and Beverly Hills.

Sade Strehlke is one of StyleCaster’s special correspondents for New York Fashion Week. When she’s not blogging for us, you’ll find her over on The Icon Concierge. Read all about her adventures throughout the week right here!