What would it be like if I’d been born in Scandinavia instead of my beloved Australia? For starters, I’d be an absolute stunner in the looks department. It would be pretty hard to lose the genetic lottery in Scandinavia and be just ok-looking. Seriously, I know I go on about it, but Scandinavians are RIDICULOUSLY good looking. But more significantly, I’d also have that laid-back yet sophisticated and effortless Scandi-style thing going on…
What is the essence of Scandinavian style? It’s hard to generalise, as there are differences between the style of the Danes versus that of the Norwegians and Swedish.
The Swedes have minimalist dressing down to an art. Clean lines, monochromatic and an achingly cool attitude – see Filippa K for my favourite examples of the Swedish aesthetic. The Danes embrace a riot of colour and prints in the most understated (if that is at all possible) and practical of ways. For proof, look no further than the divine creations of Saks Potts. The Norwegians seem to amp the effortlessness up a notch with a bit of glam and embellishments.
The common thread here seems to be the attitude. It’s laid-back, sophisticated and reeks of “cool girl” status. It’s about quality-made basics, layered intelligently and practically. The key pieces include jeans (any made by Acne Studios), oversized shirts and/or blazers, military jackets, quality knitwear, flat ankle boots or trainers, un-fussy maxi dresses, absolutely no makeup.
While on my last visit to Copenhagen earlier this year, I did my usual damage to the old credit card whilst going a bit nuts in the shops. The result? The kind of Scandi-style outfit in which my Scandi-Alter-Ego (named Ulrika) can ride her bike (towing blonde-haired cherubic children in a trailer), to a local cafe for fika with equally stunning girl friends, head to her job as an interior designer in a high-ceilinged, impeccably decorated office, go sailing/cross country skiing (just kidding), and then head out to dinner with Mads Mikkelsen-esque husband (where the kids are at this stage, I’ve no idea).