Ambivalently attached to classics and tradition, fashion is full of contradictions. Sofia Gromark Norinder knows the dual aspects of design and mixes the familiar with the technology of tomorrow. Creating clothes that suit her and our everyday needs, she breaks new ground for our brand.
“Military is a major theme and I’ve worked according to a three-step framework; reset, redefine and repurpose. We thought about how every design aspect of these garments fills a function and a purpose.”
Sofia Gromark Norinder talks about the inspiration behind the Urban collection. The starting point for her team was vintage military garments, and the sense of togetherness a uniform entails. Inspired by the natural functionality of these iconic garments, they’ve added our signature modern touch.
“We’ve focused a lot on the knowledge we have within the house. Waterproofing, windproofing and using technical fabrics. It’s about translating and adapting this knowledge into urban codes. We looked at classic garments, the parka, the bomber, the M-65 jacket. These military styles lend themselves very well to fuse with function. I love fabrics and I’ve always been a nerd when it comes down to materials so really enjoy doing outerwear.”
Because we also have everything from pattern makers to seamstresses in-house, we’re able to create toiles very quickly. So the approach is very hands-on when developing garments, making sure that everything feels as good as it looks.
How do you find inspiration?
We travel a lot and I try to make time to go see exhibitions. But really, the conversations within the team is what gives me the most ideas. Talking about our needs and what feels relevant right now. Just sitting down and gossiping can be inspiring!
Under the “redefined” mantra, the Peak Performance brand has gone through a major metamorphosis. AW17 being the first collection where the new concept is entirely there. Moving away from check flannels and robust knitwear, the new urban collection looks more like something you’d see on the streets rather than the after ski.
“We really felt like going for a new direction. Looking at how incredibly technical and modern we’ve been making our activewear, it was time for the casual collection to move into an urban environment. Essentially we’re taking what we know about high-tech apparel and putting it in more sophisticated pieces to make them ultra-modern.”
The concept of athleisure, a buzzy word thrown around in fashion and lifestyle contexts, is being described as a huge trend popularized by both athletes and supermodels like Gigi Hadid. Sofia however, thinks this new way of dressing goes far beyond the aesthetic.
“We strongly believe in this movement — the way people are mixing sports and everyday clothing. As an active person, I love the idea of being set for adventures but still work and live in a city. It’s about freedom, being able to make the most out of every opportunity and that the clothes on my back have you prepared for anything.”
So, this is more than just a trend?
“We’re creating everyday uniforms for a young and modern person who wants to look good while getting all the benefits of active wear. These pieces will not only withstand battering winds, harsh rain, and sub-zero temperatures, but also stubborn trends.”
What pieces are you most proud of in the collection?
”For men, our macintosh coat, made using a 3-layer gore-tex fabric is made with a special Japanese kind of gore-tex that had a more tactile touch to the fabric. It’s classic, has a great fit and outstanding technical features.
For women we’ve done this big down coat that feels like wrapping oneself in a duvet. I’ve found a special cotton shell fabric that feels both warm and luxurious to wear. As you can tell, a lot of the work is finding the right fabric.”
To wrap things up, are there any things you won’t change?
”Our sweat jersey is fantastic quality that is almost holy to us. It’s a thick, cotton blend with a soft fleece backing. It’s so perfect we’ll probably never change it.”