THE SHOPPER

Another Swede moment: unique ceramics, jewellery in Sheung Wan store

The Swedish founder of fashion boutique Square Street has launched a new venture in Sheung Wan specialising in one-off ceramics and jewellery

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 12 August, 2015, 10:22pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 13 August, 2015, 10:08am

If you are a fan of all things Scandinavian then you may already be familiar with local fashion boutique Square Street, which was founded by Swedish expat Alexis Holm. This month Holm unveiled his second outpost in the city, called XLICP, which has little to do with fashion.

"For me it was all about trying a new direction," he says. "I've always loved ceramics and I bought a bunch of them for my apartment when I moved here five years ago. I wanted to bring a piece of Sweden with me, so I figured other people would appreciate it, too."

Located in a small alleyway called Circular Pathway (hence the shop's name: XLI means 41 in Roman numerals, CP is an abbreviation of the alley's name), it's easy to miss the 150 sq ft space. Inside, the decor is a complete contrast to the woodsy urban vibe of Square Street. White walls are dotted with metal rods that are strewn with chunky gold and silver chains, while black and white tiles bring to mind an art gallery circa 1990. At the centre of the store are square marble blocks displaying unusual ceramics in all shapes, sizes and colours.

"I like that people can discover what we have at their own pace. Every piece is special because it is a one-off and handpicked by me. Most of the ceramics I bought at auction and my father sent them over from Sweden. Many of them are classic pieces that you find in Swedish households," explains Holm.

Dating from between the 1920s and '70s, XLICP's 26-piece collection includes bowls, jugs, plates and vases by renowned Swedish designers such as Lisa Larson, Carl-Harry Stalhane, Gunnar Nylund and Stig Lindberg. Many are signed by both the designer and the studio hand that created them. Looks range from minimalist — in the case of three vases (HK$750 each) designed by Ingrid Atterberg circa 1944 and 1963 — to playful like Lisa Larson's kitschy poodle (HK$1,150) made by Swedish porcelain makers Gustavsberg.

The rest of the store is dedicated to creative jewellery (HK$950 to HK$3,590) predominantly by Swedish designer Cornelia Webb, whose fetishist creations are inspired by the human anatomy and form.

XLICP showcases 10 styles taken from Webb's classic and studio range, assembled by hand in Sweden using recycled metal. Chunky body chains can be worn in different ways, earrings resemble spiders and fasten behind the ears for an edgy look. There are also collar-bone necklaces, chokers and bracelets from New York brand Faux/Real.

The major appeal in shopping at XLICP is there is only one of each item, meaning no one else will own one like it.

"The idea is to replace the items eventually or even try something new," says Holm. "I see this as a modular space that we can use for whatever appeals to us."

XLICP is on 41 Circular Pathway, Sheung Wan, tel: 2362 1086