"I think Danish style is understated and effortless," Sanne Sehested, creative director and founder of Danish womenswear label Gestuz tells me. "We love fashion and care a great deal about how we look, the quality of our pieces, and our style but, ideally, we want it to look like we spent very little time on it." It's this secret formula that has propelled Danish fashion into the global spotlight, eclipsing the French girl's je ne sais quoi and providing sartorial inspiration via an easy aesthetic that's now copied the world over.
Don't assume this means staid minimalism and a neutral palette, though. "We used to be known for a very clean, minimalistic expression," Sanne explains, "but I think we have gotten braver when it comes to colors and patterns." Too right: anyone following the band of Scandi women leading the street style charge (Jeanette Madsen, Thora Valdimars, Emili Sindlev, Anine Bing et al) knows that pastel hues, candy colors, and paintbox brights saturate their wardrobes as much as clean lines and classic silhouettes.
Sanne founded Gestuz in 2008, so she's seen firsthand how the Danish fashion scene has evolved from insider's secret to become globally celebrated. Her label pushes the envelope on traditional Scandinavian design, resulting in disruptive contemporary pieces with energy and innovation that befit Copenhagen's most stylish. Think classic trench coats in unexpected checks, cozy knitwear in abstract prints, and versatile afternoon-meeting-to-Aperol-spritz leather dresses.
Presenting her irreverent AW20 collection at the brand's Gallery Gestuz, Sanne says: "The collection pays tribute to the prominent minimalistic Scandinavia, but it's accompanied by a focus on a quirky edginess. We went with calmer colors and new silhouettes with a touch of power. You will see dark navy blue as one of the main hues this season in the shape of masculine suits, statement leather pieces, and outerwear. This collection is for the woman who demands much from her outfit, but also doesn’t want to take herself too seriously."
Ahead of Copenhagen Fashion Week AW20, we asked Sanne to give us her insider's guide to the Danish capital, from an unbeatable brunch to where to rummage for vintage treasures. Click through to find her picks.