Marimekko's creative director Rebekka Bay continues the Unikko celebrations with an "unpretentious" utilitarian tone, amplified by the unveiling of the Finnish brand's first-ever denim collection
Last August, we witnessed Marimekko’s flower-fest spring/summer ‘24 collection marking 60 years of the Finnish brand’s beloved Unikko print – and the celebrations aren’t over yet. Safe to say, it’s creative director Rebekka Bay who is keeping the party going. “For me, it captures the Marimekko spirit in a print. The perfectly imperfect human imprint, overlapping colours and expression of both boldness and joy,” Bay tells me ahead of the show.
Nothing feels repetitive about Unikko’s return for autumn/winter ‘24, presented today at the National Gallery of Denmark – where the print appears in large-scale, on lengths of fabric suspended from the lofty ceilings. “We have challenged it, incorporating new techniques, scales and styles, to bring an entirely new expression to this modern icon,” Bay explains.
Part of this new expression is a distinctly utilitarian take, “to explore how the collection can be dressed up – or dressed down, to fit different personalities, occasion and attitudes,” she says. Fittingly, AW24 sees Marrimekko introduce to its line-up the most utilitarian textile of all: denim. The Maridenim line, developed following circular fashion guidelines by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, is the brand’s very first foray into denim offering three jeans fits: straight, wide, and barrel leg, and two Unikko-printed full looks – as selected by Bay to open the runway today. The utilitarian nuances extend beyond the denim, too, in the precisely pleated dresses, pragmatic puffers, layerable cashmere and simple shift dresses, while 3D appliques keep things artful and expressive.
The denim does for Marimekko what denim does best, adding a generous dose of casual ease. It also helps that Bay opted to street-cast the majority of the models, and tapped Copenhagen-based DJ Kaddi Sawaneh for the soundtrack. In Bay’s words, it’s “cool, confident, laidback, and most importantly, unpretentious.”
See the full Marimekko AW24 collection below: