Made in Sweden

17Sep10

Fashion experts who visit Sweden are often fascinated, wondering what it is that makes Swedish fashion so unique. It’s actually difficult to understand and explain. It seems very simple, but when you look closer it’s very contemporary and cool.

We Swedes have essentially a very practical approach to clothes, even if we’re very fashionand trend-conscious. When we dress up, we don’t dress up too much. There’s not such a difference between how we dress at work, in our time off, and at parties. Even when our clothing is decorative, it has a practical function. I think that the Swedish approach fits very well with the modern lifestyle embraced by people all over the world. Perhaps we’re ahead of our time up here.

One positive trend is that Swedes themselves have started to buy Swedish design and that pieces by Swedish designers are now available at more places all over the country, including the big department stores. In Stockholm many designers have their own stores, where you can see their entire collections, like Rodebjer, Whyred, Nakkna, Fifth Avenue Shoe Repair, Carin Wester, Anna Holtblad, the jewelry designers David & Martin and many others. Of course Acne is the flagship − they have proven that it’s possible to build a brand on the international market, based on a jeans collection. Cheap Monday is another phenomenon, with its Weekday stores. And you can’t forget larger, established brands like Filippa K, Tiger and J. Lindeberg, and of course H&M, which is everywhere.

In general I think the Swedish fashion scene is good, exciting and creative, with lots of interesting concepts and shops. And you get a lot of fashion for your money. Remember, both IKEA and H&M come from Sweden. Swedes are used to being able to buy contemporary, chic design that doesn’t cost a fortune.”

Cia Jansson, fashion editor at Swedish Elle.

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