Julie Brøgger’s luxury brand is vying for the style crown
Friends Julie Brøgger and Linn Norström have a history working with some of luxury’s biggest names – including Net-a-Porter and Collective. Now based in London, the two Danes created their luxury label Brøgger as a celebration of style and craftsmanship across the two cultures. Designs are quirky and eccentric: bold embellishments and bright patterns are used across tailored silhouettes.
The brand launched for autumn 17, and made its debut on the Copenhagen Fashion Week schedule with a catwalk showcase for spring 19. The brand is stocked by Harvey Nichols in the UK, and from pre-spring 2019 onwards, has picked up six additional international stockists including Goodman in New York and The Greyhound in Seoul. Wholesale prices range from £95 for a slip to £990 for a full-length fur coat. Drapers speaks to Julie Brøgger about defining your look and making a difference to Scandinavian design.
How did you first meet Linn? What made you want to work together? Although we grew up not far from each other in Denmark, we met in London about seven years ago through mutual friends. We instantly connected through fashion – Linn worked at Net-a-Porter group [as a partnerships specialist] at the time I was a designer at Preen by Thornton .
We loved the idea of merging our competencies – everything starting with the designs, but backed up by experience from fashion branding, and marketing.
Why start your own fashion brand? What gap in the market did you see? We wanted to offer women stand-out pieces that they would cherish and wear throughout and beyond the season. We are very focused on the tone-setting elements of an outfit, which we hope our customer will love on its own, but also to add boldness and brightness to more basic items in their wardrobe.
What are your roles within the brand? What are your areas of expertise? I am the designer and Linn is in charge of communication and partners, but at the end of the day, it is really an organic partnership. Linn will feed back on the designs when asked – sometimes even when not asked! – just as I will be involved in all other decisions of the business, from our strategy to how we approach a showroom.
How would you describe Brøgger? What is the ethos of the brand? Brøgger’s products are made to set the tone of your outfit – they are made to make women stand out. They play between the feminine and the masculine, and vary from sharp tailoring to soft, oversized silhouettes. They are about having fun with fashion but craftsmanship, quality and choice of fabrics always play a central role in the design.
What were some of the challenges you faced at first when building the label? The market is highly competitive, but this we knew. Despite our experience and good network of contacts within buying and press, I think we were both surprised how much hassling it took to get through to people. Many were kind to meet up, and to come see the product, and share their feedback, but you really need to prove to people that you’re are going to stick around, that you’re not a one-season wonder.
Patience and consistency are important factors for success – although that’s often hidden behind the veil of fashion where everything appears fun, spontaneous and glamorous.
Why is Danish fashion having such a moment? The Scandinavian design tradition and aesthetic is one that is embodied by function, excellent craftsmanship and simplicity, as shown so well in mid-century Danish furniture and architecture. These are all values that are instilled in Danes from an early age. It has resulted in a country where people generally appreciate good design, but it does also create a normative “good taste” approach.
The boldness in the Brøgger collections is definitely a London influence. Florals, for example, were considered really bad taste in Denmark just 10 years ago so it is refreshing to see a new approach to fashion that have evolved so much – not just in colour, but also in regards to shape.
Both Linn and I admire and love the Danish brand Carcel and its unique story and products
Last fashion purchase
1980s printed shirt from Portobello Road market
Last book you read
A Danish book: Map over Paradise by Knud Rome
Last film you watched
Kicking and Screaming. I’m working my way through a list of and ’90s films. It is a bit of a nostalgic escapism mission.
Cleaning my parents’ house as a teenager. Fashion actually pushed me to it – there was so many of the trends like the buffalo boots that my parents really didn’t get or would buy for me, so I had to find a way. They paid me the same as a professional cleaner but my mum demanded perfection. She would go over the with a white cloth to check for dust. I hated it but it really taught me good work ethics and the value of money made.
To ride horses all day and maybe fix a fence. I like a bit of DIY. So I guess a cowboy … cowgirl!
What would we find you doing at the weekend?
My weekend Friday mornings in a way – I always try to do something special before everywhere gets really busy in the weekends. A lot of times that could be Road market for inspiration and vintage finds or a trip to an exhibition. When it gets to the weekend there is always time spent with my boyfriend, our dog and friends.