I Have No Idea What To Wear This Winter, So I Turned To The Scandi Fashion Crowd

Even as an experienced New Yorker, the subject of knowing what to wear during the winter escapes me. It feels next to impossible to look cool when the forecast calls for optimum warmth: my default instinct is to just drape myself in layers of fuzzy things and padded coats, so the task of coming up with a fresh and exciting outfit each day feels like a challenge. That's too much cerebral energy I'd rather not expend on getting dressed, so in times like this, I turn to a group of people who know how to conquer winter dressing best: the Scandi crowd. 

I have yet to step foot in Sweden, Denmark, or Norway (unfortunately), but even I know a Nordic winter is nothing to mess with. I thought New York blizzards were bad—but when snow is on the ground six months of the year in Sweden, it means the Scandi crowd is just about as qualified as any to be the prototype of how to pull off innovative winter style. After scanning my favorite tastemakers' account, I created a list of the foundational pieces to build up my best winter wardrobe yet. Keep scrolling to see the 6 key pieces.


Before January there's still hope to walk around with your coat unbuttoned. Until then, why not try out sharp tailored pieces a la a cool suit vest, or a sleeveless tailored jacket, underneath? Tastemakers like writer Stephanie Broek and Fanny Ekstrand both utilize this styling trick to add dimension to a cold-weather outfit, and I'm a big fan. 

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(Image credit: @hannamw@mariejedig)

It's true, your winter outfit is only as good as your coat. So it makes sense that statement puffers have been making the rounds among fashionable women in Northern Europe. While splurging is not a requirement, it'd be wise to spend a little extra since it'll be the main star of your outfits during the season.

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If Instagram is any indication, we should all be taking a break from our boots right now. It's easy to get swept up in the boot excitement of early fall, but sometimes your feet need to breathe. Here's where cool retro sneakers come in. I've noticed them paired with thick socks (it's all about warmth) and maxi coats along with sweatpants or loose trousers for an effortless Scandi touch.

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(Image credit: @matildadjerf ; @fannyekstrand)

I've been on the baggy pants wave for a minute, so imagine my excitement when I realized I could easily rework them into my winter looks following the lead of my favorite Scandi-based influencers. The vibe seems to be keeping a loose silhouette all around, which means styling them with equally oversize sweaters or button-downs. I love how relaxed yet intentionally understated it looks.

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(Image credit: @emilisindlev@matildadjerf)

Speaking of oversize sweaters, it should be no surprise that people living in such cold climates keep a collection of them at the ready. How to make it feel more intentional than sloppy is to find versions with luxe textures and interesting details like an added scarf component or a layered effect. The Frankie Shop's version is at the top of my current wishlist.

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(Image credit: @loweo@nnennaechem)

Sooner or later when it gets so cold that all that's apparent of your outfit is the outside of your coat, a striking accessory to add some visual interest is key. Fashion people from Stockholm to Copenhagen love a quirky pair of sunglasses (especially ones with a colored lens or unusual frame shape) so you better believe I'm taking notes and have a few tabs open right now.

Shop Striking Sunnies

Up next: Go Off, Nordstrom: 13 Stunning Shoes That Are Leaving Me Shook

Fashion Market Editor

Indya Brown is a fashion editor, stylist, and writer living in Los Angeles. While going to school at Columbia University in New York City, she got her feet wet in the fashion industry interning at Elle magazine, Harper's Bazaar, and New York magazine's The Cut. After graduating in 2016, she joined The Cut as a fashion assistant, eventually working her way up to fashion editor. There, she worked on a multitude of projects, including styling inbook feature stories for New York magazine's print issue, writing and pitching market stories for The Cut, and serving as fashion lead for The Cut's branded content. While New York has been her home for over 10 years, she moved to Los Angeles in the midst of the pandemic in 2020 for a new chapter. Now she is a fashion market editor for Who What Wear, focusing on emerging designers, rising trends on and off the internet, interior design, and BIPOC creatives and brands. Aside from her duties as a fashion market editor, Brown is also a freelance stylist and writer, working on national print and video commercial campaigns for Sephora, The Independent, and Cadillac. Her bylines also include Harper's Bazaar, Vox, and The New York Times. But once the computer goes down and the emails turn off, she's likely eating her way through Koreatown, hunting down vintage furniture, scoping out new outrageous nail designs to try, or taking a hot cycling class.