Great wave, mini dress
- screenprinted cotton
- 77.0 cm (centre back) 61.0 cm (waist, flat)
- Place/s of Execution
- Helsinki, Finland
- Accession Number
- International Fashion and Textiles
- Credit Line
- National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Gift of Roslyn Marshall, 1996
© MARIMEKKO, Helsinki/Maija ISOLA
- Gallery location
- Not on display
Maija Isola was a leading Finnish designer of printed textiles. Her bold colourful designs made Marimekko famous in the 1960s. Early on, Marimekko’s clean, loose-fitting smock-like dresses, skirts, trousers and shirts in crisp cotton were designed to liberate women from the tight, body-shaping dresses of the 1950s. The clothes were unconventional, informal and accessible to anyone, no matter their age or size. The name Marimekko means ‘a dress for Mary’ – that is, the woman on the street.
In 1960 Annika Rimala became Marimekko’s chief fashion designer. She presented her first fashion show the following year, including fabrics designed by Oiva Toikka (see his glass designs at the other end of this exhibition). The colours and forms of Rimala’s 1960s designs were inspired by the era’s youth culture. Her designs were notable for their use of large-scale patterns, which she varied depending on the dress style: the shorter the dress the larger the pattern. Rimala tested her patterns in black and white and only added colour when certain that the pattern and style were compatible.
—text from Nordic Cool (Feb 2015)