During fashion month, many of the cities with smaller fashion weeks get overlooked. While excitement about the rapidly approaching New York Fashion week rises, the collections from Berlin, Stockholm, Copenhagen, and Kiev have already finished showing.
Below are some of my favorites from each of these four fashion weeks. I would have to say Stockholm and Kiev tie for overall favorite weeks. But the collection from Baum and Pferdgarten (Copenhagen) takes first place for my favorite collection.
Berlin Fashion Week
Fall fashion week in Berlin featured lots of black, which is both the chicest of colors and also an archetype of German fashion. This season in particular designers drew inspiration from the punk styles of the 90s, the new Star Wars film, and fetishwear.
The combination of a blazer, bandeau top, and skinny jeans is a fit we have seen on runways and celebrities for seasons. Even the pairing of socks with pumps, while rare, is not novel. Despite the popularity of this proportion, Teboul has given us a new way to wear it.
Teboul’s collections are influenced by fetishwear, and this fall features a unique way to style fishnets that I personally cannot get enough of. Worn under a skirt or skinny pant and yet over socks and with a high enough waist to show under a crop top, the fishnets give a textural element to a look we’ve now seen a thousand times.
While I love the look of the black fishnets over red socks, I would like to see this done with beige-nude fishnets over black socks, still with black pants and shoes.
The fall 2016 Dmitri collection contained many all black looks, and in place of contrasting colors used contrasting textures. The collection had an overall tough, punky vibe, and starred some truly excellent leather pants.
Perbandt’s fall collection was unsubtly inspired by the resurgence of Star Wars images in the last year. Below I’ve included my two favorite takes on the wrap top she presented. I found these pieces clearly evoke the sci-fi imagery without crossing into cosplay territory, something this fashion-conscious nerd very much appreciates.
Like the Teboul collection, Hoermanseder draws inspiration from fetishwear in her collections. Hoermanseder’s take on this inspiration is both more obvious and also more sophisticated. Her show opened with an incredibly structural beige latex dress that almost gave a ‘fembot’ vibe.
My favorite of her takes on this unusual material are the woven top and skirts. Latex is typically seen sewn together in large sheets to create an impossibly smooth surface. Garments of this kind take a great deal of time and effort to get on and off and can be exhausting to wear through more than one event.
These woven pieces would appear to hold more structure on their own, and it’s my assumption that they would require less work to wear. They also offer a brand new texture in contrast to latex’s usual surface, which I find very exciting. I hope to see latex and similar materials continue to be used in such innovative ways.
One of my favorite details from the collection is the use of belt buckles — it is a more subtle nod to fetishwear but also stands as a beautiful addition to the garment.
Stockholm Fashion Week
Swedish design has become infamous with the rise of Ikea, and everyone recognizes stereotypes such as clean lines, black, white, and red color-blocking, and a commitment to minimalism. Stockholm fashion week certainly lives up to these expectations in some cases but also delivers some more traditional Scandinavian archetypes and modern surprises.
House of Dagmar
House of Dagmar offered beautiful takes on classic Swedish pieces this fall. Knit cardigans that hang off the shoulder and are decorated with chevrons, and large but perfectly fitted wool coats. The sharp lines of the chevrons made appearances throughout their collection in tops, sweaters, and dresses.
My personal favorite piece is the autumn-toned plaid wool coat. While I’m a sucker for boiled wool coats in general, the color palette and length of the one from Dagmar add to the appeal. It’s a garment that would make me excited to face a sub-zero day in the city.
Dagmar’s collection also included belt bags that might be described as a fashionable Scandinavian fanny pack. Leave it to the perfectionism of the Swedes to make an impossibly cool fanny pack.
If any one collection perfectly embodied the minimalist style of Swedish design, it was Whyred’s. Every piece was constructed with perfectly clean and simple lines.
The above two pieces from Whyred’s collection are possibly my two favorite pieces from all of Stockholm fashion week. The violet top has such great lines that create a potentially office-appropriate version of a sheer top. And I just love this oversized bomber, especially with the large red pentagram patch. So, so cool.
AltewaiSaome focussed on Japanism as inspiration for their Fall 2016 show, but what I saw was Star Wars. This is of no surprise as Star Wars itself is heavily influenced by samurai culture and Japanese fashion. Cross body tie tops and coats meant to reference the kimono, and while I absolutely see the kimono influence, I also see Jedi robes.
Perhaps the most Star Wars thing about this collection is that every single model walked down the catwalk with Queen Amidala’s signature geisha-inspired lip art. I’ll certainly be including this collection in my upcoming post on Star Wars on the runway.
Copenhagen Fashion Week
My list of Copenhagen favorites is short and sweet. I am only including two collections, but the pieces I’ve picked are far and away some of my favorites I’ve seen so far this fashion month, and I expect them to stay at the top of the list.
By Malene Birger
I love the Scandinavian use of black and whites with one or two bright color accents. We’ve seen it everywhere from interior design to the runway, and this season Malene Birger made excellent use of the pattern. Her models came down the catwalk with their white, gray, and black looks and every one of them had bright red lips. While the pieces included other small color accents (see the teal poking through in the image to the right), the steady use of red lipstick as a break from the nearly colorless pieces had great effect.
My love for the makeup choice aside, I also loved these pieces. The high-waist black pant paired with the relaxed herringbone sweater is a look I could see myself enjoying regularly. As mentioned above, I am a huge fan of oversize wool coats, and this one from AltewaiSaome is no exception. I am living for that collar.
Baum und Pferdgarten
What Baum und Pferdgarten delivered this season was possibly my favorite collection of Berlin, Stockholm, Copenhagen, and Kiev combined. It reminded me strongly of Ralph Lauren, particularly his Rugby line, yet it maintained a distinct Danish vibe.
I am a longtime fan of sweater dresses, particularly when so expertly paired with pants. The buttoned slit in B&P’s dress gives this piece many options for styling with or without pants — as sexy or reserved as the situation calls for. The dress’ sweater counterpart with shoulder buttons gives such a beautiful and easy silhouette, and I love the high collar with the high waist of the skirt. I could see myself reaching for either of these sweaters with great regularity.
The filigree-like gold pattern in the skirt above was used throughout B&P’s collection to great success. Here it works beautifully as a pair of culottes, which took the runway by storm in the spring, but my favorite use of the fabric is in this gorgeous cropped bomber jacket.
Kiev Fashion Week
The 90s were king at Kiev fashion week this season, which is no surprise. The 1990s in Ukraine saw the fall of the Soviet Union and the rise of Ukraine as an independent state that could access more and more of the outside world. These elements of playful freedom and travel were staples of this season’s shows.
Talk about playfulness and travel to exotic places — Jealousy’s fall line included unusual flamingo prints in bombers, culottes, trenches, and dresses. Keeping to the pattern of matches and near matches between tops and bottoms, Jealousy showed not just individual pieces in these prints, but entire looks.
The bombers and oversize trenches bring an edge of 90s streetstyle while the culottes are a distinctly modern shape. It ends up being a fantastic balance of old and new, playful and wearable. While I tend to stick to solids in my own closet, I would make an exception for the coat on the left, with the print of hands painted as geese. Not to mention that comma choker!
RCR Khomenko is most known for their printed sweatshirts, most often with stylized eyes and mouths in bright colors. The new print that surfaced this season using the familiar location pin icon found on most social media is, in my opinion, pretty genius.
An unsubtle nod to travelers, especially those who log their travels as social media influencers, it’s a print that’s likely to start popping up on the Kiev blogging circle. I personally feel driven to get my hands on the sweatshirt pictured on the left for the ultimate cozy airport look. Come fall, it will be mine.
The knits at Lalo’s fall show were the clothing equivalent of comfort food, if such a thing exists. The line is known for thick, textural knitwear, and this fall was no exception. Mid-calf length sweater dresses dominated the runway in a variety of patterns and stripes in all directions.
My favorite pairing was this long ribbed dark dress with an oversized ribbed cardigan. While it was clearly styled to show off the shape and lines of the dress more than the sweater, the pure coziness of the top layer is obvious.
In the frigid winters of eastern Europe, such effortless, warm, and comfortable fashion is a life essential. In the nearly as frigid winters of New York City, I could use some comfort fashion myself.
The last line from Kiev I am including in this post is Ksenia Schnaider. Who showed, along with the ‘100% basic’ tee, a ‘100% sweater’ sweater and ‘%100-t shirt’ tee.
Of the three variations on a silly theme, ‘100% basic’ stands out the most. I expect to see a knockoff version of this at Urban Outfitters any day now.
Perhaps it’s because we’re currently saturated in 90s aesthetic and memorabilia, but all I could think of while looking through Schnaider’s ‘100% ___’ pieces is of the 90s Juicy Juice commercials’ riff. 100% Basic for 100% Bitches? I’d probably wear it, even if just to the gym.
New York Fashion Week is in full swing, so that will clearly be my next set of designers to cover. As fashion month continues, I’ll post on London, Paris, and Milan as well, but I also plan to return to smaller fashion weeks as well. Expect to see posts on Tokyo and Seoul, as well as São Paulo, Tbilisi, Istanbul, Russia, and Australia’s fashion weeks. And of course, as promised, at the end of it all a post on Star Wars on the runway.