Wednesday, August 20, 2008

ikea, youkea, wekea

I have been in Scandinavia for most of the last week, visiting an old friend and a newer friend, and generally soaking up all that Northern European stuff. My friends live in Copenhagen, which has been a joy to visit. Somehow the idea of going on holiday to a place like Copenhagen seems like something someone far hipper than I would do, and yet here I find myself sticking out like a sore thumb with brown hair, wearing beat out nicaraguan sandals, and dirty jeans, all the while missing the accessory de jour, an argentinian scarf.
The thing is not being up to date on fashion kind of comes with the territory when you are American and in a place where jean technology is decades ahead of what we are wearing in the United States. Additionally I have discovered that my dad would be way in fashion if he were still rocking the same style as he was in the early seventies and living in Denmark. I saw a Danish truck driver today who was a dead ringer for him in his old photo albums. Who knew my pops had his finger on the pulse of hipster fashion? He was just a bit before his times.
Valeria who hails from THE place of fashion, Italy, claims that all scandinavians look the same, fake blonde hair and crazy jeans. I would say there is a bit more variation, but as a general rule there is a bit too much peroxide use for my liking.
Style and design, I have learned is taken very seriously here. Ikea is just the tip of the design iceberg, and everyone has their own take on neutrals and white accesories. I think the approach here is pretty awesome, but I usually find myself attracted to this type of aesthetic, so I am no too surprised. The thing I find more exciting is the way the Scandos dig on coziness. In fact the Danes have their own word for that cozy friendly feeling you have when you are all snuggled in with friends, a nice bottle of wine, a fire crackling away, and candles lit, hygga. And god knows in a place like this where the nights come early one needs all that to chase seasonal depression away.

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