Scandi style had long been synonymous with clean lines, a muted colour palette and fuss-free, almost androgynous separates – until Danish label Ganni started to appear on our Instagram feeds, slowly but surely challenging almost everything we’d previously associated with this particular aesthetic. Now one of the biggest draws on the Copenhagen Fashion Week schedule (alongside the likes of Astrid Anderson and By Malene Birger), the brand has won over fans in their droves – us included – with bold prints, eccentric shapes and covetable knitwear. Whereas once we’d look to the four major fashion capitals for street style inspiration, these days we’re just as inspired by shots from Copenhagen, Stockholm and even Oslo, thanks to Ganni and a clutch of similar Scandi brands that are as colourful, wearable and downright fun.
This new guard of Nordic brands offers much more than just minimalism, though some of them do that pretty well, too - whether it’s the intricate prints of fashion editor turned designer Stine Goya (another Copenhagen export), Parisian-inflected eveningwear from the award-winning Veronica B. Vallenes or classic separates by Toteme. And while our Ganni obsession is unlikely to wane any time soon, as their recent A/W’18 catwalk offering confirmed, there’s surely no harm in adding the below brands to your bookmarked tabs…
From Central St. Martins student to model to fashion editor, Stine Goya has seen the industry from just about every angle. For the past decade or so, she's focused her creative talents upon her eponymous, Copenhagen-based label. A glance at her playful, often heavily patterned designs will banish the misconception that Scandinavian style has to be synonymous with minimalism and monochrome shades. Her S/S'18 collection is a riot of print, colour and embellishment that's crying out to be Kira-Kira-ed; head to Net-a-Porter for an exclusive edit to mark the brand's 10th anniversary.
Fall Winter Spring Summer
Copenhagen and Stockholm are rightly feted for their fashion weeks, but don't underestimate Oslo. Fall Winter Spring Summer (or FWSS for a more Google-friendly option) is just one of a clutch of brands making a case for Norwegian style. Their offering is an eclectic one, encompassing anything from structured separates with graphic stripes and clean lines to cosy knitwear or simple broderie dresses, but doesn't feel fussy or try-hard. Look out for their prairie-style floral printed dresses in green and red, as worn by just about every Scandinavian influencer on your Instagram feed.
For the ultimate in fashion escapism, look to By TiMo's flowing, '70s-referencing maxi dresses in pastel shades and fabrics. Their loose, bohemian silhouettes and strikingly intricate prints have even caught the Duchess of Cambridge's eye: Kate wore a By TiMo dress on the Norwegian leg of her recent Scandinavian tour. Plus, the brand does more than just pay lip service to the concept of ethical fashion: they only use long-lasting fabrics to reduce waste, ensure their factory workers have good working conditions and their website employs disadvantaged women in Oslo.
Veronica B. Vallenes
Norwegian designer Veronica B Vallenes' collections are a study in classically Scandi elegance, all clean lines, strong silhouettes and the kind of draping that looks effortless but takes serious skill to pull off. Her dresses, whether evening gowns with intricate necklines or throw-it-on styles in simpler shapes, are particular standouts, as is the check-print outerwear in her most recent collection.
Lovechild 1979's playful aesthetic embraces statement patterns (like this season's standout lemon-tree print, which crops up across everything from silk dresses to swimwear) bold, exaggerated shapes and fun slogan knits. Founded nearly a decade ago by creative director Anne-Dorthe Larsen (who also heads up another womenswear brand, nué notes), the label's all-female design team takes inspiration from tiny details, rather than over-arching trends. Price wise, t-shirts tend to fall around the £50 mark, with dresses between £150 and £250 and knits around £200.
Stockholm-based Totême has 'Instagram-friendly' embedded in its design DNA: the label is the brainchild of Elin Kling, the original Scandi super-influencer, and her partner Karl Lindman. Favoured by the likes of Alicia Vikander and Kate Bosworth, the brand (which recently made its fashion week debut in the Swedish capital) has a go-to palette of rich neutrals – slate grey, classic camel, oatmeal – making its separates the perfect building blocks for a low-key capsule wardrobe.
Baum Und Pferdgarten
Already a major draw on the Copenhagen Fashion Week circuit and with an ever-growing fan base outside of Scandinavia, Baum Und Pferdgarten's creative directors Rikke Baumgarten and Helle Hestehave (the brand name is a portmanteau; we'll leave you to get your head around all those consonants in your own time) always bring a sense of fun to their designs, whether that's through clashing prints, neon colours or attention-grabbing accessories.