Therese Hellstroem and Nina Sandbech outside Blanche during the Copenhagen Fashion Week Autumn/Winter 2019 – Day 1 on January 29, 2019 in Copenhagen, Denmark. (Photo by Christian Vierig/Getty Images)

Copenhagen Fashion Week is currently in full swing. A week of Scandi-runway that delights in both designer collections and bang-on style of a street nature. There is nothing boring about Scandinavian street style. The Danish (and those that fly in to join the colourful, textural, layered, embellished party) know how to pull together a look that can stop a fashion paparazzi in his tracks.

For those not familiar with CFW, the looks from influencers, editors and fashion types are vastly different from their New York, London, Milan and the Paris counterparts. The cuts are overarchingly cropped, colours are often primary and monochrome and the details always bold. It’s a feast for the eyes for anyone who resonates with the “man repeller” zeitgeist. A term coined by New York fashion writer and editor Leandra Medine. It’s a safe space for things like chunky sneakers, bucket hats and nana-cardis. This is women dressing for themselves, in what they love, in what feels good, for fun and practicality… not for the approval of men.

They’re the trends that often cause as much outrage as they do applause. Anti-trends that find their way to becoming real ones. Last year we had bike shorts and neon, for example. So what’s in store for sartorial conversation-starters this year? Many start their journey on the streets of Copenhagen making it the perfect time to be inspired by looks that cause a stir. So read on, find the appropriate level of irony and celebrate fashion freedom, just like the Danes do.


Cargo Pants
Escaping from their archive on the legs of Avril Lavigne circa 2000, pants of a wide-leg, pocketed nature are finding their way back onto runways (think Marni, Kenzo, Blumarine) and into the wardrobes of style mavens. Silky, tailored slacks in unexpected hues adds to the modern styling of this era of cargo pants, as per Maria Bernad below. Leave the camo to Avril.

Instagram @Maria_Bernad


Short Sleeve Shirts
The kind your dad wears has been big business for a little while now. Prada did a selection for their men’s collection last year but women have been embracing it just as enthusiastically. Tucked into tailored trousers or worn loose over structured jeans is a look. Everything from the Hawaiian print variety to the bowling-team-uniform is a win.

Instagram @carodaur


Hiking Boots
Perhaps the ugly sneaker of winter. Acne and Ganni have done classic revivals of lace-up trekkers that double as a high-fashion accessory. We’re seeing a pattern here… a 2019 invasion of sensible styles stamped with the “fashion” label (thank you, designers). Wear with slouchy slacks or cropped denim.

Instagram @PernilleTeisbaek


The textured, channelled, hardwearing fabric most famous for its overuse in the ’70s and its life as a jeans-alternative in the late ’90s is back whether one likes it or not. If you’re over the age of 30 you have definitely already owned a pair so this return forges tortured feelings. Stylistas are going whole-hog in monochrome suits, but if you want to just dip your toe, try a cordy blazer or a French-fly trouser.

Instagram @alyssainthecity


Balloon Sleeves
This modern take on the Victorian sleeve is being hailed as the instigator of the return of the ‘going out top’. Jeans and a nice top used to be the ‘after 5’ uniform a decade or so ago. The balloon-puff sleeve is totally blowing up (sorry). In prints, whites, shirts, silks, ginghams everything. There’s not an influencer Insta-alive that hasn’t been spruiking it’s chic, silhouette-flattering benefits.

Instagram @_JeanetteMadsen_


Tracksuit Pants
We’re talking the elastic waist, elastic ankle type. Nothing drop-crotched or design-y here, this is the fleece and wind-cheater op-shop variety. Worn ironically, of course, but the comfort win is not lost on anyone.

Instagram @WeWoreWhat


Not the opaque version. No, the pantyhose variety. Sheer black stockings worn with a party dress and a pair of pumps to keep that ’80s fashion flag flying. Pros include smooth-looking legs without the need to shave, cons include ladders that turn the whole look from Pretty Woman to Courtney Love.

Instagram @styleheroine