What you need to know from Stockholm Fashion Week

10.09.2018 | Blog , Fashion | BY:


The summer months were once quiet for the fashion industry. Nowadays, the cycle of fashion shows continues throughout the summer with editors making visits to Helsinki, Berlin, Madrid, Copenhagen, and Oslo. Stockholm Fashion Week is the last stop on the summer tour, though by no means the least important.

Sweden boasts an impressive group of designers who are adept at offering singular sartorial ideas. Some have been in the game for 25 years while others’ experience hasn’t quite reached 5.

“The fashion week just ended here in Stockholm, and the interesting thing is that there is so many new and gifted talents that are showing here,” shared designer Ida Klamborn. “I would say there is a new generation of Swedish brands that are doing something interesting and pushing the Swedish fashion industry forward.”

Read Twin’s highlights from Stockholm Fashion Week this season.

Filippa K

Filippa Knutsson founded her brand Filippa K in Stockholm in 1993. In the 25 years she’s been in business she effectively placed the streamlined, minimalist aesthetic, and Scandinavian fashion, on the map. 

With stores in Sweden, Belgium, and the United States, amongst others, Knutsson is undoubtedly one of the tentpole fashion names drawing the international attention to the Swedish capital.

However, Knutsson isn’t one for theatrics. Her Spring 2019 show took place in an informal setting. Models completed a procession against a blank backdrop, posing individually for groups of attendees. The consolidated womenswear and menswear outing demonstrated why countless individuals choose her work. It’s not about groundbreaking ideas or revolutionary propositions—sometimes, once deftly executed, an airy jacket in neutral shades of dove, clay, and taupe, or crisp white trousers, can be considered a radical statement.

Filipa K | SS19 collection

Stina Randestad

“My collection has a starting point in exploring and combining materials. The material comes first letting it decide the form of the garment,” explained Stina Randestad over email. The Stockholm-based designer presented her MA collection from the Swedish School of Textiles show at the school’s on-schedule group show. “The work, therefore, positions itself in the intersection of textile and fashion design, and shows an example of how a different design process can generate an interesting result.”

The designer’s use of colour was sublime. A juxtaposition between acidic brights and sober tonal hues. Meanwhile manipulated silhouettes and structures produced a mesmerising effect. Randestad belongs to a generation of designers willing themselves to express their creativity in an unconventional fashion. 


“The dream would be to continue making showpieces for special people on special occasions. I don’t know if that would be called a brand really? I want my future to be flexible,” Randestad said when asked about her future, adding: “One week I make a showpiece for a performance, and the next month I drop a small collection of printed shirts and then a collaboration with an interior brand.”

Stina Randestad

Amaze x NH(O)RM

Mathilda Nilsson and Hanna Rudebeck founded their label NH(O)RM in 2011. Like Randestad, they’re alumnae of the Swedish School of Textiles. For Spring 2019, the pair adopted an unconventional approach by partnering with the creative platform Amaze. 


Silk scarves were transformed into dresses, striped shirting was reimagined as decadent gowns while bicycle shorts were positively Elizabethan in aesthetic. The brand reworked the tropes of traditional beach dressing, making it into something subversive and transferable.

The show was a jubilant display of body positivity, racial diversity, stature, and composition. It turned the conventional runway on its head. In a way, it felt like Sweden’s answer to Eckhaus Latta, which is as much an inspired artful movement as it is a fashion house. 

Amaze x NH(O)RM

Ida Klamborn

Ida Klamborn’s millennial-centric collection was another belonging to the set of shows who dispelled the default, perfectly-packaged Scandinavian lifestyle trend of polished silhouettes, clean lines, and tonal hues with an amalgamation of colour and texture.

For Spring 2019, she issued a colourful proclamation on summer dressing. Replete with jewel tones and abbreviated hemlines, Klamborn’s rendition of influencer-friendly, festival-ready clothes wouldn’t feel out of place on Kendall Jenner’s Instagram feed for all its silky separates and feathered frocks felt in line with the current iteration of youthful, feminine dressing.

As the designer explained: “I have always been interested in clothes as a kind of language. When I was a kid I was quite shy, so through clothes I could express myself without words. It was like a safe and fun space. This season it was about the ‘conflicted princess.’ I wanted to do new and more dynamic version of my childhood memories of those quite flat dimensional princesses from movies.”

Ida Klamborn | Photo: Mathias Nordgren

Stand

Stand is one of the many contemporary Scandinavian brands vying for the attention of the international fashion pack. The brand closed out the three-day event at the Grand Hotel. Founded by Nellie Kamras in 2014, the brand’s focus is on accessibility, bringing the use of leather to an audience at a lower price. In recent years, the designer has added cashmere, fur, faux fur and wool to the mix to create a tactile experience. One glance at the show and it becomes clear Kamras is seeking satisfaction beyond the whims of Instagram trends, she’s searching for enduring wardrobe staples.

In the case of Kamras, staples doesn’t mean minimalism. At Stand a snakeskin peacoat or a geometric-print yellow faux fur coat is as relevant as, say, a manila-hued shirt or black leather trousers. In parts, the use of leather was a tad excessive for the summer season, especially for the customer who experiences a sweltering June, July or August. And as an increasing number of major designers move away from the use of fur, the ethical issues around fabric choices may yet prove a challenge for the brand.

Stand | Photo: Mathias Nordgren

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Stockholm Fashion Week Show and Casting Review

10.09.2018 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

On her subsequent return to Stockholm fashion week, photographer and writer Sarah Jane Barnes set out to review new designers, encounter previously unseen brands, get honest feedback and most importantly shed some light on the choices of casting at one the leading Fashion Weeks of Northern Europe.

Jewellery Designer, Marian Nilsdotter chose to go her own way, communicating her vision through an intergalactic display of electro music and harpist amidst laser lights beside creeping smoke it was matched by a choreography of models that moved like celestial beings. The show ended in a crashing silence that enabled the audience to photograph the models posed as the army of angels they were. Nilsdottor uses jewellery as a medium to depict her universe of surrealist fantasy, with her careful approach to materials, all pieces are artisan produced.  Her work is characterized by symbolic figures using precious metals, stones, and pearls to tell her story. This was the most well-presented show of the season, a true piece of theatre. The casting was inclusive and representative of a diverse Sweden. 

Marian Nilsdotter SS19 

At Lazoschmidl, the Swedish-German menswear brand established models Fillip Roseen & Carl Hjelm Sandqvist led the show. Fillip experiencing well-earned success as the star of Missoni’s current campaign brought a definite international presence to the lineup. Carl a musician who tours as the frontman of rock band Tellaviv proved himself to be a multitasker by not only walking the show but managing the hip soundtrack as D.J in between looks. The collection was a combination of sparkling lurex knitwear and iridescent sequins. This loungewear look brought humour to the table via the added layering of crop tops featuring childlike depictions of teddy bears and monsters. Overall this self-entitled ‘playdate’ collection was clearly Missoni inspired by the patterns alone, the similarity was uncanny. Founded by Josef Lazo and Andreas Schmidl, the brand has a penchant for design that subverts gender norms. Initially creating made to measure garments, they traded via social shopping company Tictail before partnering with American retailer Opening Ceremony. With a target demographic of carefree party boys, they have gained a strong following in the New York club scene. 

Fillip Rosen for Lazoschmidl SS19| Photo by Peter Hakansson

Soft Goat a commercial brand with proven international sales and accessible price point showcased cashmere loungewear styled in a refreshingly non-commercial way. Rich tones of colour supported by attractive shapes were displayed with a cultivated sense of streetwear modus operandi. Using the internet as the only distribution channel the brand is able to keep prices low with quick turnover. Building a brand with a sense of social responsibility they support Project Playground, an organization that works to provide aid to vulnerable young people in South Africa.

Celebrity favourite Jennifer Blom launched her brand in 2010, this season she continued her red carpet style with flawless precision, presenting flowing dresses of pale and hot pink tones, as well as more classic mint and blue shades. With a focus on femininity and glamour alongside her way of reading the female body, she created a stunning collection. The graduate of Sweden’s prestigious Beckmans College of Design practises sustainable production by using Italian and U.K farmed silk as her main material. 

Jennifer Blom ss19 | Photo by Peter Hakansson

Camilla Thulin’s casting choices were both socially aware and politically aligned. With a roster of actresses, personalities and academics including Sara Danius this became a fine display of age equality. A charitable collaboration with Sara, in particular, led to the creation of a limited edition silk blouse. The pattern of which shows a clenched fist symbolizing women’s liberation. This in aid of GAPF, a non-profit women’s charity working against honour-related violence and oppression was modelled by Sara with discernment. In a time when gender issues are debated more than ever, Camilla Thulin remains strong in her feminine expression stating “My goal is for all women, regardless of age or size, to feel strong and beautiful.” Having founded her company in 1992 Camilla is a long-standing name in the industry. She is famously known for having created Malena Ernman’s gown worn at the Eurovision Song Contest at a whopping cost of 400,000 kroner (over €37,000).

Presenting at Fashion Week for the first time, Stylist and Costume Designer Salem Fessahaye was on fine form. This debut show, a family affair with friends both walking and in attendance was almost entirely non-caucasian cast. Her designs maintain an interesting mix of streetwear and couture showcasing asymmetric hems on sublime gowns alongside oversize suiting. These suits similar in design to zoot suits, a style popularised by African Americans in the 1940’s were striking. Her styling pedigree recognized through work with global clients including Adidas, Nike and David Beckham was apparent. The atmosphere was electric throughout resulting in a standing ovation from the full house. Runway photographers unable to capture the elusive finale designer shot accepted defeat, after pleas to audience members blocking the usual line of sight were left unheard. 

Designer Salem Fessahaye

From initial inspection, Ivyrevel appears to be a typical commercial brand, however, attending the show I was delighted to see otherwise. Happening upon a new path under the creative direction of Sebastian Hammarberg, business is on point. Colourful and sexy pieces owned the runway, featuring styling nods to Wes Anderson’s The Royal Tenenbaums and Studio 54, the show was opened and closed with undeniable finesse by Sapitueu Jeng. Meeting with Sebastian later that day it was clear how ingrained his work ethic is. Overseeing every inch of the show production this season he had left nothing to chance, unafraid of last-minute change. With this true determination for the future, he has the capacity alongside founder Dejan Subosic to lead Ivy Revel to a broader audience beyond the domestic market. 

Ivyrevel SS19 | Photo courtesy of Fashion Week in Stockholm

During my trip, I met two of Sweden’s auspicious modelling talents Anab Mohamed Abdullahi and Sapiteu Jeng both signed to Stockholm’s Mikas Agency. Anab’s family hail from Somalia, whilst Sapiteu’s parents are Gambian. Each maintaining a strong presence across the show lineup this season I was interested to learn of their casting experiences in Sweden and more specifically Stockholm fashion week. Anab although positive diversity was slowly improving was clear to inform me of her previous encounters, “They made us feel it was a competition because they only took one black model per show. After castings during my third season, most of the designers wanted to book me. Later my booker told me they cast another model but not me also because they didn’t want two black models. So, in the end, I only walked one show and I was the only model of colour in it.” Working for Sale Fes this season light was cast upon her hopes for the future “For the first time, I felt like other designers may open their eyes and see there is nothing wrong with many models of colour in the same show.” Sapiteu defining her observations expressed “Right now it feels like everyone is just focused on looking diverse without actually understanding what that really means. Hiring one or a few coloured models doesn’t make your company diverse.  Even though there is still much work to be done by the agencies, casting agents and brands, I can see a change.”

Anab Mohamed Abdullahi for By Malina | Photo courtesy of Fashion Week in Stockholm

I also spoke with Ken Gacamugani who walked for three of this year’s graduates from the Swedish School of Textiles, Helga Lára Halldórsdóttir, Dick International and August Gille. Ken originally from Burundi in East Africa was signed to the Sunrise Agency after been scouted on Instagram earlier this year. Sunrise founded by Beckman College graduate Matilda Dahlgren in 2018 is a street casting agency with the objective to offer a less normative selection to clients through diversity in size and race. Ken explained his findings of casting in Sweden “They always look for the skinny, tall, white models, the blond and blue-eyed, throwing in 5 black models to call it diversity. But Sweden doesn’t look like this anymore. It is 2018, Sweden is a rich multicultural country with generations of immigrants. I feel that these fashion shows and the industry should represent that. There is a whole world of diversity beyond those boundaries we should normalise and appreciate.”

Model Ken Gacamugani

As touched upon by Sapiteu there is more work to be done. With power comes responsibility and the hope those who attain it will make future choices without bias or tokenism.   

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The Power Of Three: Dagmar

28.01.2013 | Blog , Fashion | BY:

Some say creativity and ambition is a genetic trait – something powerfully instinctive that lies deep within the veins. This perhaps could be the reason why three sisters from Sweden decided to combine their talents, experience and specialties to create their own sibling success story. Sofia Wallenstam, Kristina Tjäder and Karin Söderlind launched their fashion label, Dagmar, back in 2005 after developing three very impressive careers of their own within three very separate areas of the fashion industry: design, retail and PR.

Since then, Dagmar and its three founders have continued to find success both in Sweden and overseas, picking up numerous awards and achievements along the way.

Tomorrow the ladies will be showcasing their latest collection at Mercedes-Benz Stockholm Fashion Week. Twin spoke to Karin, the label’s Head of Marketing and PR, ahead of the show…

 

You launched Dagmar over 7 years ago – how have things developed since then? What have been the highlights throughout this time?

There have been so many highlights! Every year has been overwhelming, however some of our awards have been the biggest highlights to date; we were awarded with the NewGen Fresh Faces New York in 2007, New designer of the Year by Swedish Elle magazine in 2006 and won Guldknappen in 2011 – Scandinavia’s most prestigious design award. But just to be able to grow and hire people has been a milestone for us. It’s always a great moment when more people join the team every year.

 

Does working as a family business make it easier or harder? Obviously you all have each other for support but are there times when sisterly squabbling gets in the way?

Honestly there are some times when it does get a bit like ‘this is something that I would never say to any other employee’, but we try hard to work things out when it gets in our way.

 

Do you all have your own individual roles within the business?

Yes, from the start we split the responsibility between us. Sofia Wallenstam is Head of Sales, Kristina Tjäder is Head of Design and I, Karin Söderlind, am Head of Marketing & Pr.

 

Describe your signature aesthetic in just 3 words.

Unconventional & sophisticated (even better, I could do it in only two!).

 

Opening today is Mercedes-Benz Stockholm Fashion Week, where you will be showcasing your AW’13 collection. What’s the inspiration/ concept behind it?

There was a huge Renaissance influence taking over us and so you can detect some of that within the collection. We put a lot of focus on jackets and coats this time with knitted furs, strict wool capes and coats with interesting cuts.

 

Dagmar is named after your late Grandmother who you’ve stated as being your muse at the beginning. Are there any other inspirational women who influence your work?

We are always inspired by strong women for our collections but not any particular one this season… well maybe Mona Lisa!

 

Any big plans lined up for 2013?

A lot of things always seem to happen, planned or not! We have huge plans, but more for the long run than specifically for 2013. Short term we are opening a big shop within NK in Stockholm this February, plus we’d like to have more of a presence in London this year… let’s see how…

Dagmar Spring/Summer 2013

houseofdagmar.se

 

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