"For our anniversary issue shoot, Joel and Kelly couldn't keep their hands off each other": Letter from the editor

By Martina Bonnier

In Vogue Scandinavia's first anniversary edition, editor-in-chief Martina Bonnier reflects on an incredible past year and celebrates the continuing focus on nature throughout the Aug / Sept issue

Driving along small country roads, passing idyllic farm houses painted classic Falu red, photographer Ellen von Unwerth sits in the front seat, snapping photos through the car window. She exclaims delightedly about the charming Swedish countryside.


She has come to this remote place to shoot our cover stars: jaw-droppingly beautiful couple, actor Joel Kinnaman and model Kelly Gale. Though they live in Malibu, the couple come here, two hours north of Stockholm, when it’s time to relax. The large property boasts several houses, a tennis court, a beach, a motorboat and a sauna, the latter of which Joel and Kelly are using when we arrive. Throughout our shoot, the couple can’t keep their hands off one another, and Ellen delights in capturing their intimate moments. It’s the perfect love story – like a Hollywood movie come to life.

This is our one year anniversary issue, and to mark the occasion we wanted to celebrate our love of nature in much the same way we did with our debut, Greta Thunberg-starring issue. Both this love of nature and the importance of sustainability remain at the very heart of Vogue Scandinavia. Within these pages, you’ll discover the striking mountains of Norway, captured with best-selling Norwegian crime author and mountain climbing enthusiast Jo Nesbø. One year ago, when I had the honour to sit next to him at our launch dinner in Oslo, the only thing he wanted to talk about was climbing – the danger, the thrill. To finally feature him hanging off a cliff is a goal achieved.

We are constantly striving to improve ourselves in regards to sustainability, transparency and diversity and inclusivity. Our goals are lofty, so we must hold ourselves accountable and work tirelessly towards them every day.

Martina Bonnier

You’ll also find a singular editorial with virtuoso violinist Eldbjørg Hemsing, captured north of the Arctic Circle in the Norwegian town of Bodø. Against this dramatic landscape, the musician has recorded her new album – a true reflection of the near-religious reverence Scandinavians have for our environment.

Nature permeates our fashion stories as well. Our expansive tribute to Mother Earth – featuring extraordinary fashion that reflects the landscape – is also a call to action. We are so proud to introduce The Vogue Square, an initiative that we hope will become a movement.

When I came across an article about a biodiversity project called the Earth Square Metre, I was immediately captured. It posits that by turning just one square metre of non-planted ground into a home for soil and plants, you can increase biodiversity in a small, simple way. Anyone can do it, just ask our Vogue Scandinavia team, who have become quite obsessed with planting our square. Our hope is that you get in on the obsession and plant a square metre of your own. To quote Earth Square Metre founder Niklas Vestin, “Soil is sexy.”

Soil is hardly the only sexy thing in this issue. In addition to our steamy cover shoot, Swedish singer Loreen and iconic Danish actress Brigitte Nielsen are featured in bold and unapologetic fashion. Meanwhile, a raw radish served at artist Carsten Höller’s new Stockholm restaurant, Brutalisten, is certainly sexy to Scandinavians.

Nature is also represented in the way this issue is packaged. As with all of our print magazines, this issue comes in our award-winning renewable paper packaging. On the occasion of our anniversary, we have collaborated with legendary Swedish design house Svenskt Tenn, decorating the packaging with the iconic patterns of Josef Frank. Entitled ‘Celotocaulis’, the green plant pattern is as resonant today as when it was designed in 1930. It is just as recognisable as the Vegetable Tree pattern, which decorates our limited, fabric collectible boxes. This is a desirable interior object you’ll want in your home.

We are constantly striving to improve ourselves in regards to sustainability, transparency, diversity and inclusivity. Our goals are lofty, so we must hold ourselves accountable and work tirelessly towards them every day. I urge you to learn more about our initiatives online – to truly enact change, we need your support as well. Even small things make a difference, like shopping secondhand (which, as it happens, inspired another fashion story in this issue) and planting a square metre of earth. We hope you will join us in making fashion (and beyond) a more sustainable space.

Thank you for supporting us through this first year – it is because of you that we get to continue to tell the stories of the Nordics. We look forward to continuing this journey together for many years to come.