Fred Segal Welcomes Scandi Brands Rodebjer and Holzweiler
Fashion mecca Fred Segal now plays host to Scandinavian brands Rodebjer and Holzweiler, known for their functional silhouettes, stellar craftsmanship, and sustainable practices. Here’s how the retailer celebrated their arrival in Los Angeles last week.
Some say Los Angeles is in its own little world, especially when it pertains to the matter of style. But Fred Segal, a purveyor of cult brands and hard-to-find merchandise, is always here to prove otherwise. This is where you come to escape the monotony of oversized, ho-hum megabrands. It’s where you tap into a different kind of creative energy. (If you ever wonder, what clothes are cool right now across the world, this is where to come to find the answer.) Each time I return, I feel the rush of excitement of discovering something new.
In the close-to 60 years that it’s been around, Fred Segal has given fashion-loving Angelinos the greatest gift — access. Access to a cohort of independent designers who are slowing down the ceaseless churn of collections, and turning their beliefs and instincts into stunning designs. Access to incredible labels from far-flung corners of the world. Case in point: Last week, the fashion mecca added another push pin to its canvas world map.
Rodebjer’s Timeless Appeal
Last Wednesday, an intimate shindig fêted the arrival of Swedish label Rodebjer. Despite being surrounded by countless other brands, as soon as I stepped into Rodebjer’s store-in-store installation, I was fully immersed into designer Carin Rodebjer’s world. Pinks and oranges intermingled on the walls — a blown-up version of a print by Italian artist Carla Accardi, which was featured in the brand’s spring-summer 2023 collection. The palette was a perfect fit, reminiscent of a California sky swathed in a blaze of peaches and rose. A sunset on Sunset!
A mix of white gravel blanketed the floor, and as I walked around the space, I felt the crunch of it underfoot. More sensory clues! This was meant to evoke a specific image — that of galumphing along the pebbled beaches of Gotland, a rugged island south of Stockholm where Carin grew up. “This space is an extension of our brand universe, fusing a free-spirited feeling with an elevated approach,” Carin said in an email a few days after the pop-up’s launch, “It’s very much Rodebjer meets L.A.”
When Carin started her namesake label in 2000, it was with a distinctive vocabulary of versatile tailoring — clothes that would become staples in the wardrobes of confident, carefree women on the move. Think: ease and elegance mixed with a certain bohemian-ness that still feels very much of the moment. And the spring-summer 2023 collection, which Angelinos can now shop at Fred Segal, is no exception.
The collection’s breezy, unencumbered state of mind came from Carin’s own travels through Italy, where she looked toward the Italian Arte Povera movement of the late 60s. (That Carin frequently finds inspiration in art is, simply, a given!) This translated to relaxed separates, tailored blazers, and plush knitwear with fringe detailing in colors like tangerine and sand. My personal favorites? An ankle-grazing silky skirt that can easily be dressed up or down. And another: a voluminous maxi skirt boasting a logo-embossed waistband and a sequin fabric that shimmered so beautifully under the store lights.
And of course, the knits — all of the knits!
Holzweiler’s New Heights
You were in Sweden; now you’re in Norway, a new world. The next day, Oslo-based Holzweiler came to town, and its arrival was celebrated with mezcal-based cocktails, chatter, a live DJ spinning tunes into the evening. Co-founder Susanne Holzweiler flew out to Los Angeles for the occasion. “First time in the city?” I asked. “Yes!” Nothing but praise for the City of Angels. Nothing but smiles.
For its Los Angeles presence, Holzweiler presented an effortless selection chock-full of cable-knit sweaters, slip dresses, and easy-breezy basics. Oh, and a smattering of gorgeous prints. Separates were rendered in a floral printed pattern — blurry, delicate, and buttery yellow — psychedelic, marble green. I also saw sunglasses, hats, fringed bags, and most significantly, scarves (for those who don’t know, Holzweiler was born as a purveyor of luxury scarves before branching out into ready-to-wear.) Curated by stylist Mimi Cuttrell, the selection was nothing short of wonderful.
It was a particularly special moment for me, having seen Holzweiler’s spring-summer 2023 collection in person on the runway. During Copenhagen Fashion Week, Holzeweiler took over the Axelborg, a former bank-turned-conference hall. Underneath a steel-beamed skylight, festooned by weather balloons, we saw so many elements inspired by the movement of parachutes — fringes, mesh, tassels, buckles. Fabrics were light and airy, and they landed perfectly with the aerodynamic theme. I recognized one of my favorite pieces — cargo pants with detachable legs — reimagined in black. A fantastic (and versatile!) addition to any wardrobe. (Read my full review of the show here.)
A Dream Come True
For both brands, coming to Los Angeles holds special meaning. Post-launch party, the crowd bookended their celebration with a three-course meal at Caviar Kaspia. At the dinner, WWD reported Susanne saying, “This is a dream coming true standing here as a Norwegian girl having a Norwegian brand and launching it at Fred Segal in L.A.”
Well, on behalf of every Holzweiler fan living in Los Angeles, I can confidently say: It’s a dream for us, too.
Welcome to California!