The cool Scandinavian brands that we were looking forward to seeing did not disappoint at Copenhagen Fashion Week. After attending two full days worth of runway shows, we finally narrowed down our top 10 collections for the Spring 2018 season. From Ganni's influencer-worthy designs and Astrid Andersen's safari-themed sportswear to Cecilie Bahnsen's beautiful babydoll dresses and Saks Potts' fun statement furs, the Danish capital is steadily making a name for itself in both contemporary and luxury fashion. Read on for our favorite collections from Copenhagen Fashion Week, and catch up on our favorite street style looks, too.
As one of the fastest-growing contemporary brands coming out of Copenhagen, Ganni attracted a warehouse-sized crowd of international influencers, industry insiders and a few famous faces (Sky Ferreira, Dev Hynes) to witness the Scandi-cool label's newest "Global Citizen" collection. Frederikke Sofie and Dilone opened and closed the show, respectively, showcasing clothes that embodied Ganni's playfully chic aesthetic. Creative Director Ditte Reffstrup took style notes from '90s sportswear, club culture and vintage Benetton ads while still maintaining Ganni's signature penchant for feminine details, like floor-sweeping floral dresses and chunky, candy-colored knits.
LVMH Prize finalist Cecilie Bahnsen is the first to represent her Scandinavian hometown for such a highly regarded industry award and with good reason: The designer's Spring 2018 collection instantly captured each and every showgoer's attention from the very start and did so all the way through to when the models lingered outside of the art gallery grounds after the show. Bahnsen continues to perfect her original designs of voluminous, almost-sculptural babydoll dresses, which sprang down the runway in pastel pink, white and black, with hints of marigold yellow.
If we had to choose who had the most fun at Copenhagen Fashion Week, it would be Barbara Potts and Catherine Saks, along everyone else who attended Saks Potts' Spring 2018 runway show; it came with such '90s nostalgia as Jennifer Lopez's "Waiting For Tonight," which played during the collection's finale. Known for their statement furs and outerwear, the designer pair added short jackets and embellished coats to their usual offerings. Potts and Saks looked to tourists and photographer Martin Parr's work for inspiration, resulting in logo-covered one-piece swimsuits, sporty pants and layer-friendly dresses. "We don't have a recipe for how our collection should be," says Potts, since outerwear is their top focus. Adds Saks: "We just do what we would wear ourselves and what we think we're the best at doing."
By Malene Birger
This season, By Malene Birger, another major Copenhagen contemporary brand, and the label's Creative Director Christina Exsteen presented a love letter to São Paulo, inspired by the work of Italian-born, Brazilian-based architect Lina Bo Bardi. (The runway set's winding straw background was an ode to one of Bardi's favorite materials.) For Spring 2018, the label offers breezy dresses in bold colors and abstract prints, as well as sharp separates paired with statement earrings and handbags.
Danish-born designer Astrid Andersen returned to Copenhagen Fashion Week to showcase her second womenswear collection, which served as an extension of her men's Spring 2018 line that debuted in London in June. Andersen presented her own take on "safari," a source of inspiration that nearly every major house has done throughout fashion history. With more skirts and flared silhouettes than last season, Andersen is still pushing more femininity into her work, which for the past seven-plus years has been rooted in menswear. But the collection still maintained the designer's sporty activewear vibe: floral-printed pieces adorned with technical details like seam seals and tape, for example.
After a three-year hiatus from Copenhagen Fashion Week, Stine Goya returned with a bang to celebrate her namesake's tenth anniversary. Titled "Flashback Forward," the show leaned more towards immersive performance art as the audience roamed around the massive room to follow different groups of models dancing, posing and walking while wearing Goya's signature designs — trademark peaches and pinks, archive prints and floaty evening gowns — mixed with new additions, like suiting and classic shirting.
Copenhagen's fashion-forward crowd didn't even think twice about the fact that Henrik Vibskov's Spring 2018 collection was to debut around 11 p.m. in the evening. A mainstay in the city's industry scene, Vibskov's runway set at Charlottenborg Palace was comprised of hanging custom-designed sleeping bags and worn-down novels strewn across the floor. The designer and his team explored the concept of sleep, sending down models dressed in roomy, layered separates covered in stripes, gingham and florals. The beauty look boasted a little quirk, too: Each model sported a pair of under-eye masks, which we would all likely be wearing the morning after Vibskov's show.
Baum und Pferdgarten
Designers Rikke Baumgarten and Helle Hestehave of Baum und Perfdgarten created a hodgepodge of trendy must-haves for their Spring 2018 "Silverlake" collection. A whopping 42 looks featured everything from sheer polka-dot blouses, denim with ruffle details and track pants to anorak-inspired dresses, plaid-printed trousers and pink metallic accessories. Judging from the show's eccentrically dressed audience, there was certainly an outfit for everyone.
You know it was worth the early-morning rise if a slew of fashion influencers and bloggers are seated front row and ready to take in the latest offerings from Lovechild 1979. The Copenhagen label and its all-female team presented a concise total of 19 looks, but the runway's intricate venue involving multiple flights of stairs, hallways and corridors, made up for the short-and-sweet collection, which was comprised of floral prints, fruity motifs and sporty separates.
Norwegian brand Holzweiler made its Copenhagen Fashion Week debut with a bass-thumping show packed with a diverse cast and cool clothes to boot. Plus, longtime "It" girl, model and designer Erin Wasson made a surprise runway appearance. Styled by street style star Veronika Heilbrunner, Holzweiler's collaborative Spring 2018 collection featured streetwear-esque looks in lavender, yellow and red, as well as some cool neutrals. Floral prints, checkered plaid and artist Sissel Blystad-inspired textiles added an extra punch to the overall laid-back vibe.
Homepage image: Outside of the Stine Goya Spring 2018 show. Photo: Victor Jones
Disclosure: Copenhagen Fashion Week paid for my travel and accommodations to attend and cover the event.