8 posts tagged "Copenhagen Fashion Week"
Justin O’Shea, the buying director at online luxury store MyTheresa, recently told Reuters that Copenhagen was one of only a few cities that inspired him. “It’s exotic minimalism. Beautiful simplicity is in their DNA. It is not based around high heels and miniskirts,” he said in the article.
It’s that simple elegance that’s starting to turn the heads of fashion insiders, like O’Shea, and consumers alike. (Denmark’s fashion exports have reportedly grown by 16 percent since 2009.) One of the most promising talents of them all is Danish designer Asger Juel Larsen, who won the inaugural menswear award in the Woolmark Europe competition last month, beating out designers like Pavel Ivancic, Vladimir Karaleev, and Cedric Jacquemyn. His judges included Style.com’s Tim Blanks, Colette’s Sarah Andelman, and Hermès’ Véronique Nichanian. “It was a unanimous decision. We were all in agreement about the choice,” Nichanian told WWD of their menswear choice.
On the heels of Larsen’s Spring 2015 “Interrupt Me” runway show in Copenhagen (as part of Copenhagen fashion week, which has just wrapped up), we checked in with the London College of Fashion grad to talk about the changing fashion scene in the Danish capital right now, his decision to leave London for Copenhagen, and more.
On the Copenhagen fashion climate right now…“Copenhagen fashion week is one of the biggest in northern Europe—it’s the most interesting in Scandinavia. We have some really strong designers who have been showing for many years, and then some new ones coming from places like London and Amsterdam who are trying a new thing and alternative way of presenting. There’s a very fun energy here right now.”
London vs. Copenhagen aesthetics…“They are definitely the total opposite look. The whole London scene—I think that makes up the craziness of what I do. Obviously, tailoring is a huge part of what I like to do. But I also have my Danish heritage—I used to embroider things with my mom and grandma, and that makes up a big part of who I am as a designer.”
On growing his business…
“I showed at London fashion week when I graduated—I had sponsored shows—then I was either going to do shows for press or go back to Copenhagen and build a company. When I moved from London, I really didn’t want to leave, it’s such an epicenter of fashion. But we are doing it at our own pace, and I’m really glad I did it that way. Eventually, I would also like to have a base in NYC. We are sold at VFiles in New York, H. Lorenzo in L.A., Henrik Vibskov, and lots of places in Scandinavia (obviously). Our biggest business right now is coming from Japan and the U.S. Our diffusion line of basics, A.J.L. Madhouse, is way more affordable, and that’s doing quite well.”
The immediate effects of the Woolmark win…
“I think the show went really well. I think there were a lot more international magazines at the show because of my Woolmark win. Also, lots of buyers have been contacting me. All in all, the news has been everywhere and all the media outlets have covered it. My Google alerts are going mad right now. It looks like the future is going to be hectic.”
On the art of winning a fashion prize…
“I had a really good, but very short, dialogue with the judges. I think they thought the fabrics and the garments I did were unique. I wanted to make a human sheep with the merino wool—we all laughed about that. I didn’t have much schooling on doing a fashion competition, they just selected me and Anne Sofie Madsen to do it. It was just me and my team, trying to make something really pure. You know?”
His dream fashion prize to win…
“To me, Woolmark is everything. There is nothing bigger.”
Given Copenhagen’s chilly climate, it’s no surprise that during the city’s biannual fashion week, which wrapped on Friday, Scandinavian designers turned out warm, functional garments. Gorgeous coats were staples, and some of the best came from Designers Remix’s uniform-inspired collection. Fur was also a fixture, and particularly stood out on rising star Freya Dalsjø’s runway (above, left). Her use of color-blocking brought new dimension to her mink coats and pumps.
After a few seasons of absence, Danish favorites Wackerhaus and Stine Goya (above, right) made strong returns to Copenhagen fashion week. The former presented layers of tailored, feminine garments, while the latter enlisted top Danish models Lykke May and Louise P to showcase her voluminous lavender, baby blue, and mint green wares. Those looking for decadence got their fill at By Malene Birger. The brand’s namesake founder departed the label last season, and the Fall ’14 collection was designed by Christina Exsteen. The lineup, with its seventies-inspired maxi-glam feel, was true to the brand and felt younger and more directional than previous By Malene Birger offerings.
Both Anne Sofie Madsen and Asger Juel Larsen (above, left) were inspired by Antarctica this season, but each of their collections showcased the respective designer’s signatures, and demonstrated why these two talents are gaining international recognition. Madsen’s white furs definitely caught editors’ eyes, as did her intricate, ice-crystal-like dresses. Meanwhile, Larsen’s techno-inspired, tribal-printed collection had a campy quality, and was one of the top outings of the season. Wali Mohammed Barrech’s black-and-red ninja looks also deserve a mention—he’s one of the city’s most interesting up-and-comers. We’ll be keeping our eye on him.
Copenhagen’s clique of clever urban brands, Wood Wood, Baum und Pferdgarten, and Henrik Vibskov (above, right), were at it again for Fall ’14. Vibskov’s spaghetti-inspired collection gave a lesson in colorful joy, while Wood Wood stuck to a more sporty aesthetic. And one of Fall ’14′s biggest trends in Copenhagen—check patterns—was done best by Baum und Pferdgarten. The clothes were an unlikely combination of grunge and prep.
Even with the promise of champagne, 8 a.m. is an early call time for the last day of fashion week. But that didn’t stop editors from flocking to Day Birger et Mikkelsen‘s Copenhagen flagship for an early-morning presentation. While show-goers enjoyed a tasty brunch, models wove through the room in tweed coats, wrap dresses, pencil skirts, fluffy sweaters and tiger-print pants. Casual suits and beaded jackets were also Fall features and showed off the brand’s signature fusion of intricate craftsmanship and simplicity.
After more than thirty years on the fashion scene, Ivan Grundahl is not exactly a new kid on the block. Even so, his Fall ’13 felt youthful, and even a little rock ’n’ roll. Asymmetrical lines, architectural shapes, and uneven silhouettes are Grundahl’s signatures—all of which were present during Friday’s show. The collection (above) offered lots of heavy boots, loose trousers, and sweaters in dark prints, black, and army green. Large pockets and lace were used as accents, and balloon-shaped dresses and sequined skirts provided hints of femininity.
Stine Riis, the winner of last year’s H&M Design Award, closed out Copenhagen fashion week with her collection, RIIS. For Fall ’13, she continued her love affair with clean dressing and discreet details, showing tailored trousers and narrow pencil skirts mixed with silk shirts and wool outerwear. A gray jacket was one of the best pieces in the show, and cutout patent leather details on skirts and tops were a nice contrast to the modern minimalism.
The most committed designers won’t let the prospect of labor delay their shows. And in the case of Danish designer Stine Goya, that was labor literally—the very pregnant designer was due the same day as her collection was to debut. But Goya’s collection marched on as scheduled (her baby, for what it’s worth, didn’t make an appearance) and secured her spot as the standout of the season.
The designer’s relaxed, feminine forms are widely flattering, but like the seventies Danish designer Margit Brandt, Goya is her own best model. Maybe that’s why all the models in her show were styled with her own signature cat-eye makeup and coif—long, strawberry blond locks with blunt-cut bangs. The collection took hot-air ballooning for its theme, emphasizing voluminous, beaded frocks, printed silk dresses, draped trousers in pretty pastels and sherbet shades. And Goya, a former Chanel model herself, took her runway bow in a peach and white form-fitting dress with a balloon-sized belly.
The rest of Copenhagen fashion week was somewhat less buoyant, since many of the city’s most artistically innovative designers were M.I.A. Vilsbøl de Arce and Spon Diogo were noticeably absent from the schedule, which was heavy on commercial labels such as Munthe plus Simonsen, Malene Birger, and Hugo Boss. But the refreshingly clean minimalist Bruuns Bazaar collection, Henrik Vibskov’s Dadaist presentation on a circular stage set rotated by costumed stagehands, and Anne Sofie Madsen’s magnificent collection of dresses with sculptural frills and prints inspired by Piero Fornasetti maintained Copenhagen’s strong creative integrity as the fashion showcase for future generations of stylish Danes.
The calendar of global fashion weeks has already whipped cognoscenti around the world this year, and it’s barely February. This week, New York hosts its packed schedule of Fall shows; last week, it was Copenhagen’s turn on the world fashion stage.
Copenhagen fashion week energizes the whole city. Massive television screens beam the shows to the general public, who gather for impromptu parties on the street. Other fashion weeks have struggled to absorb trends from the axis-of-influence cities, but Copenhagen stays true to its own traditions, largely centered around loose, layers and bold prints. It’s a look done best by Henrik Vibskov, who helped define Danish design, but he’s got plenty of compatriots with collections worth seeing.
Stine Goya’s uncanny collection of graceful jumpsuits, rounded-shouldered jackets, raspberry-colored prairie-girl hats and softly draped dresses at the inspiring wood-paneled Danish Royal Danish Academy of Music was a standout (above left). So was the show from the talented Wackerhaus label, which looked like a sexed-up version of Goya’s slinkier pieces. The youthful, streetwear-leaning line Wood Wood stayed true to form with a collection of multi-layered print unisex coats, dresses and leggings in soft prints and muted shades of yellow, gray and maroon. Danish design is sometimes faulted for being overly theatrical, but any of these pieces off the runway could be easily assimilated into an everyday wardrobe. Not so those shown at Vilsbøl de Arce’s tiny presentation: lacerated leather masks, leather and wood laced boots and sculptural dresses and bodysuits (above right). They didn’t make a case for wearability, but you could easily see why the label often supplies Rihanna and Lady Gaga.