Sweden’s beloved menswear brand is ready for world domination.
Silver Place is that rare thing, a small pedestrian Soho street in central London with a laid-back atmosphere devoid of honking cars. Though only a stone’s throw away from tourist-heavy Oxford Street and chaotic Carnaby Street, it attracts a healthy mix of destination shoppers and random passers-by.
Our Legacy, the Swedish fashion brand famed for its intellectual and contemporary menswear, could not have asked for a better spot for its fourth store, the first one outside Sweden. “We’re in a nice part of London—it’s smack in the middle of Soho but still a bit hidden,” explains Our Legacy cofounder Jockum Hallin.
What began in 2005 with printed T-shirts made in a studio by friends Christopher Nying and Hallin has grown into a global brand. And it has done especially well in the U.K., hence the imminent store opening. “We had been looking for a space here for a while; we wanted something magical and with character,” says Hallin. They ended up with a small and cozy London home. “England has developed into a great market for us, especially in the past two years. We’ve thought a lot about that, and we’re not entirely sure why—it’s not like it’s been a conscious decision to focus on the U.K. I suppose there was just something that clicked between us,” he adds.
“Our cut is far from overdesigned—we spend more time on getting the fabrication, weight, and texture right. A lot probably has to do with our positioning as well; it’s hard to completely define what kind of brand we are, which means we have a broad customer base,” says Hallin. He’s referring to Our Legacy’s mode of communication. The label hasn’t always been that forthcoming. Adds Hallin: “Yes, we’ve been surrounded by a kind of romantic obscurity. We have to trust the customer to get it and to understand what we’re saying, but I think Our Legacy has a fairly educated customer.”
An Our Legacy collection used to be defined by elevated basics, but today the label is in the business of fashion—but its own kind of fashion, featuring pieces that have been “taken for a ride.” “We used to be more of a ‘wardrobe brand,’ dedicated to refining classics, but today you can find statement pieces in our collections as well,” says Hallin. “Often we do quite formal garments, but you’ll never feel overdressed in them. We’ll clash two unexpected fabrics with each other to create something new. And it’s not just about fabrics but also how you can create new garments, like a suede shirt with a zip or suit trousers with a elasticized waist—they’re hybrid pieces.”
Visit the Silver Place shop and you’ll see that Our Legacy’s design DNA can also applied to bricks and mortar.
Far from overdesigned, the stores use plain but elegant materials to create a sophisticated shopping experience. “With the store, the goal was to get heavy things floating. We used simple materials to look more than they are, a bit like with the clothes. There’s an industrial feel to it. Lots of stainless steel, glass, and concrete, plus a resin-covered floor that makes it look like you’re standing on glass,” says Hallin.
The shop is more than part of an expansion plan; it’s a statement of intent. “The ambition has always been to grow organically, even though that sounds like a cliché. Since it’s quite a small company, we have to expand slowly. It’s expensive to grow, whatever business you’re in. We want to continue this kind of growth, and going forward, I think opening up in New York or even Los Angeles would be a good fit and natural progression for us,” he adds. World domination isn’t a very Swedish ambition, but it seems Our Legacy is destined for it.