MINNA SÄRELÄ is a founder of Finnish design collective PALONI, which is coming to New York this weekend to open a pop-up store during the fashion week. PALONI shop will be open through the end of February at the Ivana Helsinki NYC Concept Store. Their motto is: YOU CAN CALL IT DESIGN, INDIE FASHION, ART OR HANDICRAFT. WE CALL IT PASSION.
Firstindigo&Lifestyle: Minna, I was so happy to hear that PALONI is coming to New York, tell me little bit about this ‘invasion’?
Minna: I founded Paloni one and a half years back, and lately started to feel that it’s time for the next step, broadening our scope and doing the first international project. New York opened as an opportunity through another Finnish fashion company Ivana Helsinki. After I got to discuss with their crew, things started going forward very fast. Our designers are very excited about this project and the possibilities it offers. We had a total of 37 Finnish designers joining the project, despite a very tight schedule for the preparations. Now it’s not just my project anymore, it’s something we do together. We have a group of 20 Finnish designers coming personally to New York, and together we will promote Finnish design and fashion know-how, build a pop-up store within the Ivana Helsinki NYC Concept Store. We will organize events and parties, network and build ourselves wider horizons for future dreams.
Firstindigo&Lifestyle: When you started the company-collective, who did you include, was it by invitation and with like-minded people?
At first all of my co-operations with designers started by finding interesting labels or designers, and looking for cooperation. Now I get many requests every week from designers who would like to cooperate. I try to answer them all and to help them all, even if I think there’s something about their line or products they should still work on before going to the market.
Firstindigo&Lifestyle: HOW INTERNATIONAL IS PALONI?
Minna: I see Paloni as “born global”. Even though we’ve only operated in Finland so far, our way of communicating in English, and with international vibes, have brought us international customers and connections, and made our network international. Also our designers come from across the globe, although this New York project concentrates on making Finnish designers’ skills better known.
Firstindigo&Lifestyle: I learned from your website that you have been participating in eco- and sustainable fashion events, what have you learned about this field, and what are your thoughts about this trend?
Firstindigo&Lifestyle: WHAT ARE YOUR NEW PROJECTS WITHIN PALONI, AND YOUR EVENTS?
Firstindigo&Lifestyle: What do you expect from your visit in New York, how many times have you visited?
Firstindigo&Lifestyle: Is Paloni hoping to bring the products here, or will operate via the e-shop?
Firstindigo&Lifestyle: Welcome to New York!
Read also story about Scandinavian Design in this blog
Check the Paloni website: http://www.paloni.fi/