Marimekko Flint skirt take two

A tragic thing happened with my last post – none of my text and photos published and vanished from my history. I have no idea what went wrong but I shall rewrite it, even though it’s never as good the second time!

This outfit is made from the Marimekko print known as “Unikko”. This is an iconic poppy print which was first released in 1964 by the Marimekko designer Maija Isola who disobeyed the founder of the company, Armi Ratia’s, orders that there would never be a flower print released by Marimekko! Maija went on to release a whole series of flower prints. I bought the  large Unikko print in Stockholm in 2014, which was the fiftieth anniversary of the fabric. I remember buying this print back in 1974 when I used it to make kitchen blinds for my new house. Anyway, I only bought a tiny remnant, thinking that it would be good for something! Then I found the small poppies in the Marimekko shop in Vancouver and serious planning began!

I initially planned to make a dress combining the two fabrics, but found that I either didn’t have enough fabric or had too much. I couldn’t waste any of it!

After the success of my Flint shorts, I thought I might make a kind of adult romper, but in two parts – shorts and top. I didn’t have enough of the large poppies for the shorts and thought it would be weird if I made them from the small poppies and the top from the large. So, what to do? Then I hit on the idea of turning the Flint shorts into a skirt. I loved the pocket opening and thought it would be an interesting experiment. I didn’t know whether the front tucks would be strange in a skirt so thought I’d better do a toile, which duly proved to be successful, so I summoned my courage and cut the skirt out.

I then needed a shortish top from the small Unikko pattern. I settled on the Lotta Jansdotter Esme tunic, cutting it to the shortest length. It was too short (of course) so I added a bottom band and threaded some elastic through to pull it in a bit closer to my body.


The photo of the back makes the hem look a bit uneven but this is caused by me jamming my hands into the pockets.


I didn’t have enough of the large poppies to get the pockets cut out, so I used the small poppies.


You will have to play “spot the pocket” to see what it looks like, but I think it works pretty well. I secured the bottom of the pocket with a satin stitch arrowhead.

I found more of this fabric at an op shop in the form of a cushion, which I bought for a dollar. It was brand new with a $60 price tag, so I was pretty happy. I can now coordinate perfectly with my home decor!


I wore the outfit to a meeting and ran into Vanessa from  It’s so nice to catch up with new sewing friends in the street and we had a quick chat about the outfit.

We then paid a flying visit to our holiday place and I felt very overdressed strolling around in the bush in my Marimekko outfit.


It’s a wonderful time of the year and the bush is ablaze with blooms.


So. If you want to create your very own Flint skirt, all you need to do is to take the front and back pattern pieces and draw a straight line down the centre seamlines to where you want the hem. I chose to make my skirt slightly A-line, but you could also turn this into a pencil skirt. Those new centre lines then go on the fold. The advantage of this for my skirt is that I didn’t break up the big print.

In email correspondence with my friend Hélène I discovered that she had also, and quite independently, hacked the Flint shorts into a skirt, so it seems as though the collective consciousness has been at work. [later update: it transpired that this last bit of information was completely incorrect! Hélène actually published her lovely Flint hack onto Instagram whereupon I immediately said I was going to copy it. This must have gone into my subconscious and, of course, I have copied her!]





46 thoughts on “Marimekko Flint skirt take two

  1. Love this outfit and love the poppy print. I made a top out of the red colorway years ago. Sadly, wore it out… If only the fabric weren’t so expensive…

  2. This outfit is fabulous. I started to look for this print and found another colour version but alas, at £31 a metre it was a step too far me

  3. Oh what a fantastic idea. I also have the big and little flowers but in blue. I have been reluctant to cut into it them but you have inspired me. I bought mine in the outlet shop in Helsinki.

  4. Mixing two variations of the same iconic fabric is a truly awesome idea, Sue! How versatile is this Megan Nielson pattern! My skirt hack is quite different than yours though: I had made it midi length in white linen for our now gone summer ☀️

      1. Amendment not necessary at all! But yes, please always feel free to link in my photos. I am flattered and honoured, dear Sue xx

  5. I love this combo. The skirt is also exactly the style I would wear – I definitely want to buy the flint pattern now I see I can make a skirt and shorts that I love. I will have to google where the Marimekko store is in Vancouver so I can finagle a visit the next time I drive through.

  6. Love Marimekko prints especially the florals. I have two twin comforters purchased in the mid 80s in primary colors and will never let them go! One is still in use on the bed in the guest room done up for the grandkids.
    Your skirt hack is wonderful. It’s selling me on the Flint pattern.

  7. This is glorious. I love everything about it and I can’t believe you found a matching cushion. Talk about the stars aligning! I love the skirt design too and am off to investigate my Flint pattern ASAP.

  8. Hi sue, I think that this outfit is one of my favourites. The mixing of the small and large prints is inspired and the skirt/top combo is perfect for the fabric. It is very chic and looks superb on you.

  9. Your 2-piece looks fabulous. I think this is so much better then a dress and gives your opportunities to mixandmatch with other clothes as well. I remember this print very well. My patterns bought it in the 1960s in red and my mother still has it.

    1. I agree, that this is probably more versatile than a dress. I had this print in the 1970s, but your mother has a great deal of sense for hanging on to hers.

  10. What great ideas you always come up with! The shorts look great as a skirt and the small and bigger poppies look great together 🙂 It is always a good thing when your garments match your home decor 😀 I know that feeling!

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