“SLOW DOWN, GO OFFLINE AND EXPLORE OUR PLANET”
Founded in 2014 by the two childhood friends Jeppe Alexander Meier and Jesper Finderup the brand Forét aims to inspire our community to slow down, go offline and explore the planet, non the least. With the nordic and authenticand adventurous lifestyle in mind, Forét provides quality goods and contemporary casual wear.
Forét is one of the three upcoming brands at this years CFW New Talent Scene. We asked the two guys a handful of questions about their journey with Forét.
Tell us a bit about yourself, who are you?
We are two childhood friends with a common dream of creating a lifestyle brand. We met each other back in the days as kids and competitors at the local flea market. Already at this time the driving force of our friendship was built to create. Jeppe has a background from CBS in Financial Marketing, and worked several years in the media agency industry. While my background is several years in the fashion industry, and a Bachelor degree in Brand Design.
Our mix of insight, experience and network has turned to be a very good combination creating and building up Forét. We have a common and creative mindset about how we want to convey the identity and basic values of Forét. Jeppe is the head of Marketing while I’m the head of Design. In addition to that we have a lot of common responsibilities such as business development, strategy, e-commerce, wholesale and PR.
What was it that got you into fashion?
I was already in this industry and had insight and experience from years of work in big companies like IC Companys, Samsøe & Samsøe and Magasin Du Nord. The dream of creating my own label already began when I got my first job in the industry. A dream that continued for many years, until me and my childhood friend Jeppe turned words into action and took the first step into creating forét.
We wanted to build up this simple yet comfortable lifestyle brand, with a strong identity. It led to the name “forét” inspired of the french word for forest – one of the reasons why lots of our references are based from the nordic nature.
You have a love for detail and craftsmanship. How does this reflect your approach to design?
I have always been very detailed and conscious about quality. Which is exactly one of the approaches to our design philosophy. It’s quite simple. We do our best to perfect all our garments with durable fabrics and small details that improve the products, which is not necessarily getting noted by the end consumer at first glance. We have a lot of focus on small features that make the experience a bit better and make it more than just a basic garment. We never compromise and always only work with the best suppliers on the market.
Who are your own personal fashion heroes or style icons?
It’s hard to mention a specific hero or icon. But there are lots of notable brands that are doing very well. We get a lot of inspiration from different cultures and styles as we try to interpret them in a way that makes sense for our universe. We are especially inspired by the mix of urban and outdoor with additional references from contemporary workwear.
Could you explain a little bit about how you develop your collections? What are the driving forces behind them?
The starting point for our collections always consist of reinterpreted classics from previous collections. Simply permanent styles, that we optimize and develop with new details, fabrics and colour ways to keep its relevance and excitement season after season. We want our customer to get this special feeling wearing Forét. A feeling of being part of our journey and inspiring universe.
In this context we always create a new concept for each season, which will form the framework for the collection and the direction we want to go with the brand. The AW18 collection is built around our concept “FISH & FOLK” with references to the nature, relaxation, presence and passion. In this case fishing. Not pro, just pleasure – an offline escape into the woods to slow down and enjoy life.
We’ve made a mix of practical yet comfortable garments, with a simple and clean touch for everyday use. The colors and materials are inspired from the shades of the nordic woods, lakes and fish. With a range of natural, earthy and warm colors.
Our main focus is the quality, fit and details, and we always do our very best to select the best mix of fabrics that combines comfort, durability and finish in the best way. Our products are perfected in different cotton materials, primarily crafted in Portugal. The materials include organic cotton, soft cotton knitwear, various shirt qualities and much more. Overall our range of materials consists of extremely durable, soft and classic fabrics, weaves and structures.
For this season we are proud to release lots of new items to our range of products. It includes our very first trousers, chunky knitwear and special accessories that have been carefully developed and perfected for months.
What have been the craziest experience with Fóret so far?
First of all we are proud that we built up Forét from scratch without any kind of investors or funding. Just with hard work, patience and organic growth. We went full time last year. Jeppe quit his well paid job and I went full time directly after graduating my Bachelor. It was no doubt the biggest milestone after 3 years of hard work. And ever since we’ve had a lot of crazy experiences. We got a nice office/showroom in the heart of Copenhagen, and expanded our distribution to more than just the Danish market. We just had the best start ever on the Dutch market and have great expectations for our new agents in Belgium and UK. Furthermore we will debut at the fair on Revolver during Copenhagen Fashion week later this month, where we are very excited to present our new collection.
It certainly does not sound like something big compared to the well-established brands. But since it is completely new to us, we try to appreciate every step we take in our development. To be a part of the “New Talent Show” is also a big experience we look very forward to and we are very honoured to be among the selection of new talents.
What can we expect at the New Talent Show?
At forét we provide slow goods for the journey. Our mission is to make people slow down, go offline and explore our planet. The show will be our interpretation of a fashion show. The models will be in our target audiences age. The styling will be honest and low key. The tone will be slow and melancholic as the Fish & Folk collection is about finding the inner peace while setting forth a fishing trip on your own and recall your childhood memories and good values. We will not try to be something that we aren’t with unique showpieces. We will be true to our DNA and show our take on comfortable and contemporary casual wear for the modern adventurous man.
About CFW New Talent Scene
The CFW New Talent Scene is also a competition. Boozt will select a winner among the three talents. The winner will exclusively receive mentorship and coaching from Kasper Staalsø, Strategy & Brand Director at Boozt – to help develop the winning brand and make it reach its full potential. The mentoring process will be documented on the CFW platforms and the winner will be announced on Friday, 2 February.