When Ditte Reffstrup was growing up in the Danish countryside, she and her friends would listen to Nirvana and smoke inside the barracks dotting a nearby beach. In the summertime there was drinking, dancing, and swimming after dark.
For Ganni’s Spring 2019 collection the designer culled from those freewheeling days of living outdoors. Reffstrup was so moved by nostalgia backstage, she admitted to sobbing while watching her youthful pieces charge down the runway to “Smells Like Teen Spirit.” Though naïveté was the theoretical idea behind the clothes, the designs were actually rather grown-up. Ganni first became known for girly floral-print dresses but it’s clear that Reffstrup wants to move away from that stereotype and she did so today.
Yes, there were delicate slip dresses and touches of pouf sleeves and eyelet, but for the most part, this collection was about moving the brand forward and making it accessible and appealing to those living outside of Copenhagen. There weren’t a lot of embellishments, frills, or fuss, save for the rainbow and blue-and-white tie-dye on jeans, jackets, and shorts (these pieces are likely to sell well).
Reffstrup also took a familiar balloon-sleeved button-down dress and did it in a chic hunter green leather. Shimmer and shine came from retro Lurex knits, and the loudest print was the leopard on a long slip dress and a collared blouse. Although the outdoorsy-chick references were a bit too literal, the anoraks and hiking boots made in collaboration with the Icelandic sportswear label 66 North worked well with the more urban-minded pieces. It took Reffstrup a bit of time to look inwards and bring more of herself to the brand, but no doubt about it this collection benefitted from its unique and heartfelt point of view.