Long associated with bulky shapes and itchy textures, wool is not exactly the fabric one would expect as the basis for a modern fashion label. But With & Wessel has appropriated this highly adaptable material as the refined core of its chic, Scandinavian aesthetic. Co-founded by husband and wife duo Stian Tolnaes and Cathrine Wessel—formerly a marketing/branding director and a fashion photographer, respectively—the brand combines entrepreneurial heritage with modern sensibilities toward manufacturing and sustainability.
A reinterpretation of the namesake Norwegian outdoorswear company run by Wessel’s grandparents, With & Wessel combines a legacy of functionality with modern design. Using manufacturing techniques that produce light, deliciously soft Merino wool fabrics that vary in weight from semi-sheer to lush French terry, the label’s simple designs reflect the versatility of its material. Helmed by Michelle Kim (an eight-year veteran at Anna Sui), the line emphasizes layering—a crucial approach when it comes to both fashion and function—with items that range from jerseys to cardigans, intimates and even socks.
An added component of With & Wessel’s brand ethos is its emphasis on an eco-friendly outlook. Wool is one of the world’s most natural and renewable materials, providing odor-absorbent and anti-bacterial fibers as well as adaptability to different climates and temperatures. And, given that it’s also biodegradable, it doesn’t share the shadow of large-scale excess that so many other consumer products imply. With & Wessel ensures the highest quality measures in maintaining these standard by working with like-minded manufacturers that have been approved by Woolmark and the Research Council of Norway. The result is the ultimate in sensible utility and irresistible style.