"Either I will be a successful fashion photographer or a hermit living alone in some mountain."
Tell us a little bit about yourself and where you live.
My name is Mikko Puttonen and I'm a 19 years old photographer and blogger from a Finnish city called Turku. I photograph different kinds of marketing and fashion campaigns and projects and I actively post to my blog.
What are your passions?
Everything that is beautiful and inspiring. At the moment I am most passionate about photography, fashion and interior design.
How did you first become interested in fashion and why is it important?
When I was a child, I loved to dress up in different outfits. One day I could be a pirate and the other one I was playing Madonna with tights attached around my head. I believe that my interest in clothes and expressing myself through them leads back to my childhood. Today my style is a strong part of my identity.
How do you describe the fashion scene in Turku compared to other major cities or fashion capitals?
To be honest, Finnish are known for being wind suit people. Due to a long and extremely cold winter, one has to be a bit crazy to put personal style before comfort in the winter. In my current home city people have a relatively good style but still, I often feel like being the black sheep in the middle of white ones when I wear my leather trousers and long cardigans. In Finland fashion and culture don't walk hand in hand and I would truly love to see people expressing themselves more through clothing and style.
What do you love about living in Rio de Turku?
I moved to Turku one year ago but I will always be a country boy from the bottom of my heart. I love my current home city because even if you can barely call it as a city, it is a nice and cozy place to live in. There is a lot of historical architecture and several ancient buildings that inspire me. Furthermore, they work as perfect locations for photographing clothes.
Tell us your top 3 places to visit in Finland:
Suomenlinna (The Castle of Finland) is an amazing picnic site during the summer time. In addition everyone should experience the Moomin World and the beautiful nature of Finland.
Describe your personal style and its influences or inspirations.
My style changes as often as my mind does. One day I might look like a scout boy in my shirt and bow tie whereas the other one I can be dressed up in leather from head to toe. I love playing with different dimensions and e.g. combine extra big shirts with super tight trousers and vice versa. My style consists mainly of dark clothes mixed with wild patterns and materials.
What are your favorite designers and places to shop?
My all-time favorite designer is Alexander McQueen. I also like Zara as a brand but I always get my best shopping results from flee markets.
The first thing you look at in another person's outfit is:
What do you skimp on?
Socks! To be honest, I feel silly paying for socks as no one will ultimately pay attention to them in daily life. Or so I thought until I noticed that almost all my Spider Man socks that I was wearing in preliminary school created hilarious moments among my friends. Luckily, I got a couple of new sock pairs as Christmas gifts.
What do you splurge on?
I have finally understood the fact that cheap shoes very seldom last long. Thus, I consider them as an investment and try to pay a bit more for better quality.
A fashion rule you always break:
Perhaps all of them! I think fashion rules are made to be broken.
A fashion rule you never break:
Well, there is actually one thing. I would never put socks and sandals together.
What do you think is the most recent notable trend to appear/reappear, and what are your thoughts on it?
Platform shoes. I own a few pair of them myself as well. I can already see myself laughing at them when I get older, or who knows perhaps I will wear them still as the most stylish grandfather or the neighborhood.
What is the most underrated item in menswear and womenswear?
Shoes. I've seen too many UGGs and Crocks.
Your favorite color of the moment is:
Black, white and grey.
What is your next "must have" purchase?
I dream of Balenciaga boots but I still need to re-consider if need them so much that I'm ready to eat a couple of months only cheese and macaroni.
What is the ultimate showpiece in your closet?
Perhaps my vest that is decorated with shiny feathers. I have never used it anywhere else but in my job, in fashion photography. Perhaps one day the crazy birdman will be a familiar view in street fashion.
Are there any fashion icons or famous people whose style you admire?
I really can't name anyone at the moment but I admire everyone who is brave enough to look as he/she wants. I always start to smile when I see a stylish grandmother walking in the city and being truly loyal to her style - even if the lipstick would go a bit across the borders.
What's on your iPod at the moment?
Cut copy, Lorde, Lykke Li, Fever Ray, Kings of Convenience, Regina Spektor, Florence and the machine, First aid kid...
What can't you live without?
My boyfriend, photography, friends and peanut butter.
Next place you want to travel to:
I have actually never taken an airplane in my life. I think it's time for me to loose my flight virginity soon. I dream of a photography travel somewhere where the environment and nature are completely different from Finland. I believe that would bring a lit of new energy and vision also to my personal daily life.
What is your personal favorite outfit on Lookbook by you, and by another member?
In the year 2018, you will be:
Either I will be a successful fashion photographer or a hermit living alone in some mountain.
What would you say to someone seeking general fashion advice?
You won't find your own style by only reading fashion magazines. Style has to come from yourself. Trust your own style and bravely combine different clothes as you want.
Our last interviewee Alana Ruas wants to know: What do you think when you look in the mirror?
It depends on many things...sometimes I think that I look like a witch and some times I see a charming young man.
What should we ask the next interviewee?
If there was a wildfire in your apartment, which clothes would you save from your closet if you could pick just three?