From Sarah Lund sweaters to knitted rollerskates
- 19 February 2013
- Alex Zagalsky
London Fashion Week at Somerset House is this year playing host to a Scandinavian exhibition showcasing the hottest labels from Norway, Denmark and Sweden.
If your idea of Scandi fashion begins and ends with Sarah Lund and her now infamous Fair Isle jumper, prepare to be enlightened because many of the featured labels at LFW are planning a UK expansion this year and next.
If you are a fan of The Killing, you'll be happy to hear 'that' sweater is represented at the exhibition courtesy of label Gudrun & Gudrun, a label started by two women from the Faroe Islands, specialising in handmade and organic knits. It seems so fitting that the jumper comes from such a remote and wild part of the world where there are only 45,000 inhabitants!
We saw the white version of the Sarah jumper (above left) and it's as warm and hard wearing as you can imagine (if a little itchy). The merchandiser told us that you could wear it for years and it wouldn't stretch out of shape (which presumably explains why it made it to series three!) But Gudrun & Grudrun is full of surprises; there are colourful hand-knitted cardigans in alpaca, soft pastel round neck jumpers in kid mohair (you will never feel anything softer), lambswool jackets that look like clouds, and even hand knitted roller-skates! For now you can buy online on their website, and there's a special subcategory for all the jumpers from The Killing (yes, really).
Another brand that is going to make big waves in the UK is FWSS (which stands for Fall Winter Spring Summer) from Oslo. The name is apt since everything we saw on the rails was incredibly versatile - staples with edge if you like. If you Google the name right now you'll see the label is responsible for starting a bit of a beanie craze across Scandinavia (they sold out of the angora hats everywhere). But FWSS's speciality is silk shirts, sometimes plain, sometimes vibrant and often boasting beautiful digitally printed patterns like the leopard one below.
My final tip on the fashion radar is Swedish label Rodebjer (pronounced rude-bie-re). A brand that has a huge US following - see the autumn/winter 2013 collection from New York Fashion Week on Style.com.
This is feminine comfort luxe at its best with not a cinched waist or a stretchy fabric in sight. Rodebjer is unfussy but effortlessly elegant. The pink shirt we picked up below is exquisitely made (part of a key look that went down the NY runway), and we were told that the fluffy grey sheepskin coat came from 'happy sheep' : the designer Carin Rodebjer has an old friend who owns a sheep farm and so only a few of these are made each year. If you look on the website how you can buy a pussybow silk/visose shirt for 60 Euros from 220 Euros!