Vancouver is home to the only Marimekko concept store in Canada. Known worldwide for its luxurious, colourful, and unique designs, Marimekko was established in 1951 by Armi Ratia in Finland. They have 150 stores, including locations in Norway, the United States, Denmark, Japan, China, Australia, Hong Kong, and Thailand.
Celebrating its 70th-anniversary last year, Marimekko is recognizable by the iconic poppy and “is an established brand that has great quality that everything is made to last decades and to be passed on,” says Nateish Wilman, the General Manager of the Marimekko store in Vancouver.
“We know our client’s names, and there are only three of us who work here, but we carry the most beautiful brands. So it is a lovely balance for us that we have this incredible design with all of this history, but it is still just a neighbourhood shop,” says Wilman.
Choosing to launch in Vancouver was because of the large Finnish population. “I think it is kind of funny. You might not think Finland and Vancouver are similar, but Finland can be so rainy and grey, and so you bring in all these happy-looking colours and that is the same here,” says Wilman.
“So much of what we consume is so disposable and that is really the opposite of Marimekko,” says Wilman. “It is about getting that classic beautiful design that will last forever, and every piece has the name of the artist who made it, so it is a cool connection to the history or Marimekko when you get a new piece.”
Shop Marimekko at 851 Homer Street, Vancouver, BC.
- Helen Siwak is the founder of EcoLuxLuv Marketing & Communications Inc and publisher of Folio.YVR Luxury Lifestyle Magazine and digital women's lifestyle magazine EcoLuxLifestyle.co. She is a prolific content creator, consultant, and marketing and media strategist within the ecoluxury lifestyle niche. Post-pandemic, she has worked with many small to mid-sized plant-based/vegan brands to build their digital foundations and strategize content creation and business development. Helen is the west coast correspondent to Canada’s top-read industry magazine Retail-Insider, holds a vast freelance portfolio, and consults with many of the world’s luxury heritage brands. Always seeking new opportunities and challenges, you can email her at [email protected].
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