Meet the Marimekko designers

When Marimekko was founded in 1951, its unconventional designs transformed the tradition of textile printing and clothing in Finland. Meet the Marimekko Designers Minna Kemell-Kutvonen and Sami Ruotsalainen and take a peek behind the scenes at Marimekko’s in-house printing factory, where the cotton fabrics for the Marimekko for Microsoft Surface collection were printed.

Meet the Marimekko designers

Meet the Marimekko designers

  • Maija Louekari – Print Designer

    In 2003, Maija won a design competition organized by the Aalto University of Art and Design & Marimekko. Maija is inspired by small things and observations one can make of the everyday life and other people. Image: Toni Rosvall.

  • Maija Isola – Print Designer

    During her remarkable career Maija designed over 500 patterns, including the iconic Unikko. She drew inspiration from traditional folk art and modern visual art as well as from the nature and traveling. Image: Asko Tolonen / Design Museum, Helsinki.

  • Sami Ruotsalainen – Senior Designer

    Sami graduated from Aalto University of Art and Design in 2005 and is an expert in ceramic, product design and glassware. His design approach combines precision with a delicate feeling for materials and form. Image: Kerttu Malinen.

  • Minna Kemell-Kutvonen – Design & Product Development Director – Home Products & Prints

    Minna completed her Masters of Arts degree at the Aalto University of Art and Design in 2005. She is fascinated by Marimekko’s unique use of colors and is constantly looking for new ways of expressing them. Image: Kerttu Malinen.

  • Unikko

    Unikko (poppy) was born in 1964 after Armi Ratia, Marimekko’s founder, had announced that Marimekko would never print a flower pattern. Designer Maija Isola refused to obey Armi’s orders and – in protest – created an entire series of gorgeous floral prints. One of them, Unikko, has become a story of creativity, strength, courage, and faith in oneself.

  • Siirtolapuutarha

    Siirtolapuutarha (city garden) is Maija Louekari’s brilliant line drawing which tells a tale of a journey from a bustling city to a lush city garden overflowing with flowers and vegetables.

  • Räsymatto

    Remember the stripy rugs made by using odd scraps of fabric common in the mid-20th century? They’re still popular today on the floors of Finnish summer cottages. Maija Louekari’s Räsymatto pattern translates this nostalgic, yet functional rug in a quirky, modern way.

  • Kaivo

    The inspiration for the classic Kaivo (well) pattern came to Maija Isola in 1964, as she dropped a bucket into a well and watched ripples form on the water surface.