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Style, innovation & equality

(16:) Ikla, (17:) John Sterner, (18:) Trine Lindegaard and (19:) Appletrees

Finish designer with extraordinary experience bets big on materials and artisanal knitwear made with social and environmental consciousness. Bold, colourful streetwear made with socially responsible methods and supersized shirts and silk made with uncompromising quality as we add four more names to the list of 25 of the best new Nordic menswear brands.

Edited by Robin Douglas Westling Written by Jimmy Guo

(16) Ikla

Finish designer with extraordinary experience bets big on materials.

London, United Kingdom — After earning his stripes working for brands like Preen by Thonron Bregazzi, Jens Laugesen and most recently, working as head designer at E. Tautz, there’s no doubt that Finnish Ikla Wright has what it takes to make it in this business. In 2016, he presented his first collection under his eponymous label Ikla showcasing his talent for making contemporary wardrobe staples with a directional flair. As you would expect from someone with an MA degree from Central Saint Martins and years of experience working for luxury brands, Ikla has all the know-how and connections it takes to produce garments of the highest standard using fabrics such as traditionally Scottish wool to advanced Italian tech materials. While his eponymous label rests dormant for now, Ikla is set to present a collection at the 2018 edition of Pitti Uomo in collaboration with the heritage Finnish tailor brand Turo.

(17) John Sterner

Artisanal knitwear made with social and environmental consciousness.

Öland, Sweden — Knitwear — like proper knitwear — is the name of the game of John Sterner. A part of the counter-movement against fast fashion, the copywriter-cum-rubber raincoat mogul Alexander Stutterheim’s new project is all about the wonders of well-crafted wool yarn. Inspired by the turtleneck sweaters his grandfather wore while fishing, the entrepreneur got the idea to make precious knitwear in a more sustainable way. And with sustainable, Alexander has really thought about the entire journey from sheep to shop. The wool, sourced from a Swedish breed of sheep, is harvested and knit by hand locally on the island Öland in Sweden. Not someone to forget the social aspect of his responsibility, the small-scale manufacturing even employs a collective of Syrian refugees, each of whom signs the pieces they knit.

(18) Trine Lindegaard

Bold, colourful streetwear made with socially responsible methods.

Copenhagen, Denmark — Trine Lindegaard has, like many of her compatriots mentioned in our list, an MA in menswear from the Royal College of Art. She started her label in London with the idea of building a brand that could make a difference. With a strong focus on socially responsible and sustainable manufacturing Trine Lindegaard has employed workers from UK-based prisons, collaborated with traditional Kente weavers in West Africa, and run design projects in Danish asylum centers. What truly impresses us, however, isn’t the philanthropic aspects of her work. Upon graduation in 2010, her first collection immediately won accolades from the press with dubbing her as ”one to watch”. Her bold, colourful designs can be described as wearable streetwear infused with elements from traditional craft from all over the world. Now that she’s moved her operations back to her home in Denmark, we couldn’t be gladder to see how she will develop her designs that make both the wearer and the maker a little happier.

(19) Appletrees

Supersized shirts and silk made with uncompromising quality.

Stockholm, Sweden — Sweden certainly has no shortage of shirt makers, but while the majority of them focus on classic, bang-for-the-buck dress styles, Appletrees stands out by doing almost the exact opposite. Made in Italy, using 100% Egyptian Giza cotton or silk, Appletrees shirts are lavishly expensive and come in unusual styles with hemlines reaching as far down as to the ankles. Following their 1-2-3 ethos built on quality, functionality, and colour, the founders Charles Murray and Victor Sandberg have built a small but dedicated following in their hometown Stockholm. They have also added silk accessories and denim to their offering. Of course, these are also made according to the uncompromising quality standards as their shirts.