For many decades, French fashion was the epitome of elegance, from Brigitte Bardot and Inès de la Fressange to Lou Doillon and Jeanne Damas. But in 2018, we're all trying to emulate the effortless elegance of our favorite Scandinavian style stars. And leading the charge of the well-heeled Danish/Swedish group is Pernille Teisbaek, author of Dress Scandinavian: Style Your Life and Wardrobe the Danish Way, co-founder of influencer agency Social Zoo, editorial stylist, and street style star with over half a million Instagram followers. Now, Teisbaek can add designer to her resume, thanks to a collaboration with Copenhagen-based fashion house By Malene Birger. The 10-piece capsule collection, based on some of the brand's most iconic silhouettes, is available Wednesday exclusively at Net-A-Porter.
Involved in every stage of the design process, the capsule epitomizes the easy yet ever-polished aesthetic for which Teisbaek has become internationally recognized. Priced between $295 for a satin camisole and $995 for a plaid coat, the pieces are the ultimate building blocks for a versatile wardrobe.
Ahead of Fashion Month, we caught up with Teisbaek to discuss designing the collection, dressing for the shows, and how her style has evolved since becoming a mother.
Tailoring is a significant part of your everyday wardrobe, as well as in this collection. Which style icons and designers have been most influential in developing and inspiring your style and why?
"The most influential style icons for me would be Phoebe Philo, who has always inspired me with her effortless, classic silhouette that works for many occasions, as well as Jane Birkin, who knew how to make style look effortless, feminine, and casual."
Can you describe the creative process working with Malene Birger? How did you decide on the 10 items for the capsule?
"We had design meetings where I created the collection in close collaboration with By Malene Birger’s great design team. Our starting point was using fabrics and the color palette from the pre-spring collection, and from there I created my own go-to pieces and silhouettes. When designing the 10 items, I worked from some of the key pieces in my own wardrobe and made sure that all the items could be combined and styled in different ways."
How would you personally describe your style, and how has it evolved throughout your career? Has it changed now you're a mother?
"I would say I went through a transition while being pregnant and while breastfeeding, but now I feel like I’m back in my own skin, where my style is less practical than during those months. I like to put on a pair of heels from time to time, as I think it’s important to be able to feel feminine even though you’re a mother. Less mummy, more wife."
What is it that makes Scandi style so captivating in 2018?
"It must be the combination of something very effortless, classic, and casual that makes Scandinavian style so easy to integrate into the wardrobe and long-lasting. Pieces that will last a long time because they don’t go out of style. That’s also important when having a sustainable mindset."
The fashion industry is in a state of flux at the moment, with many brands moving away from the traditional fashion schedule. As a social media star, do you think that shows are still valuable, or does Instagram hold more influence?
"For me, it’s very important to participate in the shows, as you don’t get the full picture online. Everything from the music, the location, and the very small details you’ll only see in person, such as details on a shoe or back of a dress. The captivating atmosphere and those details are something that inspire me a lot. Instagram is a huge source of inspiration for me as well, but I’ll never stop going to the shows."
Which is your favorite item from the collection and why? How would you style it?
"I love all of it, especially the suit and the coat. The coat I would wear as a statement piece with a nude slip dress underneath or wear it with a chunky knit and wide-legged trousers."
With the shows fast approaching, how do you pack for fashion month?
"I always prepare really well as it’s always very stressful doing the fashion weeks. I prepare my outfits in advance while I’m packing, so I have everything ready each morning when I go to the shows."
What does your average working day look like and how did you juggle this collaboration with your schedule?
"I’m very fortunate that I have a job where I can be more spontaneous about my time – some days I’m away for the day in Paris, other days I’m at the office all day until picking up my son. I designed the collection shortly after giving birth, but we managed to do the design workshops with an infant in my arms."
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