It is time to introduce you to Miira Zukale – a designer who has joined the team of Patternsfrom Agency in 2017.
Who are you and where do you come from?
I’m Miira Zukale, textile designer from Helsinki. I got the Master of Art degree from University of Arts and Design in Helsinki, today known as Aalto Univeristy, in 2007.
Describe yourself as a designer
I have been working as a freelance designer ever since my graduation. Besides of designing patterns, I run the accessory brand Mary a. jalava together with my business partner Veera Moilanen. Our main products are stockings and leggings with prints that I have designed. We print the products by hand.
Do you have an idol?
I admire the ceramic artist Rut Bryk for her patterns and colors. Also, illustrators such as Tove Jansson, Ilon Wikland and Ivan Bilibin inspire me with their illustration techniques when designing patterns.
What is typical for you as a designer?
I sketch a lot by hand. That’s why I always keep a small sketchbook with me. The original sketch of a pattern might be just a small drawing in the corner of my book. I’m very facinated by papercut and woodcut techniques. These slow techniques give a slightly clumsy result, which I love as a pattern designer. I scan the sketches, put them into repeat and make the color variations. When designing patterns I love the sketching phase the most, as I get excited over new ideas very easily. As a result, sometimes I feel like there is no effort left for the finishing phase which is very important…
How do you get inspired?
As a matter of fact, I get inspired by everything what I see around myself. Travelling, architecture and small details are some examples of sources for my new ideas. I take a lot of photos, which are the base for my sketches. I love to stroll around in Helsinki as a tourist, wondering the beauty of the buildings, colors and the nature of my hometown.
What is your favourite thing to design and why?
I love to design patterns in which craftmanship is present. I’m interested in designing surfaces in a versatile way. My favourite patterns to draw are often voluminous or patterns with small details. On the other hand I feel pleased when making an interesting repeat with just one single element.
Can we see your designs somewhere already?
Mary a. jalava stockings have been enlighting the hipster city since 2009. In addition I have been designing patterns for several companies in Finland and abroad for fashion, wallpapers and stationaries. Designing Kotikaupunki and Hetkiä patterns for Arabia mugs has been one of the most interesting projects that I have been taking part to.
What are your wishes for being one of the designers at Patternsfrom Agency?
I’m happy to have my patterns out in international trade fairs. This enables me to concentrate on designing and creative work. I like to share my thoughts with professionals – otherwise the work of a designer may become quite lonely.
How does the future look like in ten years or so?
I wish to have more time for creative work and crafts. I would love to learn many new skills and participate many interesting projects.
Full designer profile of Miira Zukale is available here.