improv home: Marimekko on a budget
I had an orange, yellow, pink, and green floral Marimekko bedspread when I was a kid in the seventies. I’ve had an incessant desire for this Scandinavian-designed gorgeousness ever since. Thanks for getting me hooked on the expensive stuff, Ma!
I really can’t bring myself to spend the full 4o to 60 bucks a yard that Marimekko fabric usually costs. So to get my fix, I drop by the “clearance” section at Textile Arts, a fantastic online fabric shop that specializes in Scandinavian goods. Every so often, excellent Marimekko bits and pieces are to be found there, often for less than $20 a pop. It’s one of my most treasured secrets, but now I’m spilling the beans to you, darling blogosphere!
My collection of Marimekko pieces are all in odd sizes. Some are big enough to tack on the wall, and I do that. Some are just folded in a drawer, and occasionally I just take them out and admire them. One day, I realized I could use two of the scraps to dress up some bland white bathroom curtains. And so I did…
Improv How-to: I took the white curtains down, laid the Marimekko remnants on top, and trimmed those to size. I kept the selvages on–I love to see the designer’s name and the year the fabric was issued…that’s part of my collector’s mania. On the first set, I got a little fancy and sewed a 1/2″ hem on the printed fabric’s top and bottom edges:
Then, inspired by a technique of Nicole’s that we used in our book, I stitched around each flower to tack the two fabrics together and just add a bit of graphic contrast. It’s easy to do it (seriously, if a klutz like me risks doing this on her beloved Marimekko pieces, it’s EASY)–you lower the pressure on your machine and just turn the fabric as you sew.
And that is how a cheapskate enjoys a little bit of the Scandinavian good life. (Ikea meatballs would be another way–I often have some in my freezer).