In the last few years, Danish fashion has invaded Instagram feeds, conquered luxury retailers around the world and shaped many a high-street trend. Brands like Ganni, Saks Potts and Stine Goya have won over the fashion world with their combination of light wrap dresses, expertly-cut denim and colourful prints. Led by the international popularity of charm-maker Pandora and the unwavering appeal of storied brands like Georg Jensen and Ole Lynggaard, Danish jewellery too has joined the race.
Today, Copenhagen has become a prime spot for international buyers and trendsetting influencers looking for the latest jewellery trend. “Our whole mission was to create this noise,” explains Pernille Møbjerg Knudsen, co-founder of The Jewellery Room, which she and her sister, Charlotte Møbjerg Ansel-Henry, launched in 2013. Together, they set out to create a space dedicated to celebrating Danish and Scandinavian jewellery brands during Copenhagen Fashion Week.
Now in its 11th edition, The Jewellery Room has supported emerging talents – including Maria Black, Orit Elhanati and Pernille Lauridsen – by inviting them to showcase their collection for free and giving them six months of complementary access to The Jewellery Pressroom, an industry-dedicated online space where brands can share PR materials with media and buyers. Promoting new talent is only one half of the aim. Uniting brands of different scales under one roof, says Møbjerg Knudsen, has made it easier for buyers and editors to get an overview of the latest collections in one go. But more importantly, it has created a cohesive Danish jewellery scene. “We are creating a common ground for Danish designs, but they are also creating individual universes – the aesthetic of each designer is incredibly strong,” continues Møbjerg Knudsen.
According to Eva Kruse, chief executive and president of the Global Fashion Agenda, a leadership forum on fashion sustainability, the way The Jewellery Room is helping to shape the Danish jewellery scene is echoing the changes brought to Danish fashion by Copenhagen Fashion Week, which she co-founded in 2005. “We also came together as an industry and instead of acting as individual players we started acting as one body, formulating a vision, an ambition of how we wanted to be perceived,” she tells Vogue. “It’s very important for all industries to have these collaborative platforms in order to grow.”
Danish jewellery has also been boosted by a change in consumer behaviour, which is increasingly rewarding brands with strong storytelling and daring designs, characteristics that, according to Møbjerg Knudsen, were already part of the Danish jewellery tradition. Think of Ole Lynggard’s masterful designs, Georg Jensen’s history of artist collaborations or newcomer Nadia Shelbaya’s playful pearl and gold creations. For Patti Green, jewellery buyer at Matchesfashion.com, individuality is exactly what Matches clients want. “They love discovering more artisanal brands with a really high and unique level of craftsmanship, and are always looking for things with a point of difference,” she says.
Kruse believes that Danish jewellery, like Danish fashion, also possesses a “democratic” edge that resonates particularly well with consumers who increasingly aim for effortlessly cool style. “It’s dressy and yet relaxed – that’s the Copenhagen style.”
The way jewellery is worn and is purchased has also changed, shifting the focus from hyper-luxury and in-store service to an increasing direct-to-consumer approach via e-commerce and everyday luxury. “It’s OK to wear jewellery to work with jeans and a T-shirt; it’s not something you just wear at a big party anymore,” explains Møbjerg Knudsen.
In November, The Jewellery Room will be hosting its first event outside of Europe, bringing its showcase to Hong Kong, where the featured emerging brands will have the opportunity to meet the local community of high-end buyers and consumers. “It’s a jewellery scene that is very dominated by big brands, but luckily even there [consumers] now want more storytelling and more personality,” says Møbjerg Knudsen. With its eye-catching styles and a relatively accessible price point sustained by high craftsmanship and quality materials, Danish jewellery seems to have exactly what it takes to go global.
This article was first published by Vogue UK and has been republished by The Jewellery Room.