Ivana Helsinki is an independent art, fashion & cinema brand, delicately mending Slavic rough melancholy and pure Scandinavian moods. The balancing between white arctic summer nights and endless winter sadness. Eerie hovering isolation and intense starkness. Ivana Helsinki collections are like small ballads with charming, soulful and savvy tones.
“Ivana Helsinki started as my personal art-project; now it’s a way of living. I could easily spend my life as a nomad, raising stories of love and life and going to my road trips – but it is pretty much ok to do cute, straight cotton and woolen dresses for charismatic drummer girls and girl-women with beautiful souls instead. My world is for the ones whom love moonlit fields, pirates, dark forests, crummy motels, champagne states of drunkenness, fragile butterflies, passionate relationships, cowboys and guardian angels. After all, they all are just after a love of their lives, rarely seen peaceful madness; just waiting to see, will he be a rock star, a motor biker, a gnome, a cosmonaut or a sailor,” explains Paola Suhonen.
Paola Ivana Suhonen is a Helsinki born designer, artist and filmmaker. As the artist behind the fashion pieces, she starts from her dark, naive mind-landscapes, northern legends and western romantics, creating the prints, graphics and films to supplement her collections. The mix of past and present has infused her style with yester years’ flavorful sophistication along with a shot of contemporary charm.
A brand twenty years in the making, the family-operated Ivana Helsinki atelier is based in downtown Helsinki where unique pieces and small-series production are done. The brand is the only Scandinavian women wear brand which has been accepted into the official Paris and New York's Fashion Week Show calendars and has been featured in several alternative projects where fashion, design and modern art have been combined. In addition to her own projects, Ms. Suhonen has done product development, print and concept design for several companies including Head Snowboards, HP Sauce, Topshop, Google, Swarovski, Coca-Cola, Canon, Artek, Amnesty International, Mori Art Center in Tokyo, Finnish traditional porcelain company Kermansavi and her own jewelry line for Kaipaus. A graduate of the University of Art and Design Helsinki, Ms. Suhonen has also studied at the prestigious American Film Institute, where she fulfilled her passion of great film making.