This TikTok-trending Norwegian brand comes Elsa Hosk approved

By Josefin Forsberg

Courtesy of Murlong Cres. Photo: Courtesy of Murlong Cres

Remember the name Murlong Cres, because it will most likely adorn a label tag in your wardrobe soon – if we're to trust Elsa Hosk, Sidney Sweeney and Matilda Djerf

Swoon-worthy romance is on the menu for those looking for the perfect summer dress as Norwegian slow fashion brand Murlong Cres slowly but steadily takes over TikTok – not to mention Elsa Hosk's wardrobe. And it all started as a hobby during the pandemic.


"I am absolutely not a fashion designer," is the first thing founder Kaja Høglund says when we chat. "I studied graphic design in Australia." Høglund taught herself to sew as part of her final project for her degree back in 2018. "I borrowed a sewing machine from one of my friend's grandmas," she laughs. Once her studies were complete, Høglund moved back home to Norway where, by necessity, her interest in sewing gave way to a nine-to-five graphic designer job. "Then I lost my job during Covid, and I picked the sewing back up again to fill time. I started with no money. I couldn't afford to buy fabric, so I had to sell stuff off."

Murlong Cres is the modern definition of a brand born through social media. "I posted the pieces I made to TikTok and Instagram, and after a while, there was a demand to purchase what I had made, so I created a website," Høglund explains. Initially, Høglund every piece by hand in her home just outside of Oslo. But after a while, the demand grew to the point where Høglund had to expand. "That's when I started looking for a manufacturer, and I found this small family-owned factory in China with only 100 employees. I've been working with them since."

Photo: Andreas Rentz for Getty

Even so, Murlong Cres had yet to lay its proverbial golden egg – the 'Elsa' bustier, named with hopeful ambition before the supermodel's endorsement landed. “I named the pieces 'Elsa' before she wore them because I always dreamed of her wearing them," Høglund shares. It was an immediate hit with, whose feedback the designer was actively tuned into. “They all wanted the 'Elsa' top, so I decided to focus on that silhouette,” she says.

The original 'Elsa' bustier quickly took off, and before long, its pleated silk bust, tie straps and cotton bodice was spotted on some of our favourite Nordic tastemakers: Matilda Djerf styling it under an oversized blazer, Hanna Schönberg wore her version with gold jewellery and Anna Winck imbued the romantic top with her usual cool, styling the top with off-white loose-fit denim and slides.

That said, no influential fan of the brand has had as much impact on its meteoric rise as Elsa Hosk herself. Fittingly, the Swedish supermodel and former Vogue Scandinavia cover star wore the 'Elsa' maxi dress in ivory to a recent event, pairing it with a tone-in-tone apron and pops of red. To Høglund, the moment was indeed a mark of success. Better yet, the pictures were posted on the designer's birthday, making the occasion "the best birthday gift ever." Especially considering other celebrities are now flocking to the brand. "Taylor Hill recently contacted me," Høglund says. "Oh, and Sydney Sweeney purchased a couple of pieces."

I named the pieces 'Elsa' before she wore them, because I always dreamed of her wearing them

Kaja Høglund

According to Høglund, her outside-in perspective has helped shape the brand. "I don't know the rules, so I don't know when I am breaking them," she says. Instead, she has the freedom to shape her collections at will. "I try to really listen to my customer," she says, referencing her pivot to perfecting the 'Elsa' bustier and diversifying the design. Murlong Cres doesn't release collections. Instead, Høglund drops new limited edition designs when they're ready. "Like right now, some of our customers have been asking for the 'Elsa' design but with sleeves," the designer shares. "So that's what I am currently working on."

Working with natural materials, silk and cotton, Høglund decided to offer a tailoring service early on. "Not everyone fits into a sizing chart. I want people to know that my clothes fit them," she says. "I still do all the alterations by hand at home," she shares, showcasing what a labour of love Murlong Cres has become. Better yet, boasting a size range spanning XXs to XXXL, Murlong Cres as a small brand is doing more than many large fashion conglomerate in the realm of inclusivity.

Photo: Andrus Valulis and Xenia Valule

Photo: Andrus Valulis and Xenia Valule

Photo: Andrus Valulis and Xenia Valule

But that's not all. Coming from a self-taught background, Murlong Cres' most recent venture is the launch of digital sewing patterns. Although the brand's products are reasonably priced, Høglund still understands that they may be too expensive for some. "I know that not everyone can afford my pieces," she says. "I learned how to make clothes through sewing patterns, so I wanted to offer our customers that experience. I obviously won't make every design into a pattern, but it means more people have access to it."

So what's next for Høglund and Murlong Cres? "Bridal," she says enthusiastically. The brand's Instagram and TikTok are flooding with requests for bridal gowns and bridesmaid dresses. "That's why I made the all-silk 'Elsa' maxi dress. I'm now looking at making one with a train..." she trails off before adding that there will also be more colour options for bridesmaids.

Our premonition for this social media-savvy Norwegian brand? Murlong Cres is one to watch.