Ones to watch: We love Ivana Helsinki’s dreamy, luxe dresses

If we lived in Baltic Europe, we would already be watching Paola Suhonen, the designer behind Finnish brand Ivana Helsinki. Suhonen’s clothes are captivating yet simple—she works mostly with cottons and wool fabrics, classic styles, fun prints—and each collection has a completely unique look.

Suhonen started the line 15 years ago, but says that it was building up for years before that. “My whole life has been one creative project,” she explains, and her inspirations are seemingly neverending. “Music is my great passion. I love Jack White, roadtrips, interesting people, good energy, my rescue dog Affe, old ‘70s films by Jörn Donner and Ingmar Bergman, great detective books…” she lists off. Seems like our kind of girl.

Her website shows 10 of these collections, and many more look-book style galleries that are styled to perfection—like the cheeky Leaving Circus, in which sad clowns looks incredibly chic. We are currently fawning over her Fall 2011 collection, called Velvet Lake, whose mosaic-style checkered knee-high boots, beehive hairdos, peacock-feather prints, and luxe winter-perfect dresses make us want to run away to the forests of Finland, taking only a photographer and maybe some hot chocolate.

Ivana Helsinki is available internationally at

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