Acne is the result of a fusion between jeans and fashion. Acne unites innovative jeans styles with a versatile wardrobe for men and women, ranging from basic cotton t-shirts, to tailored jackets, luxurious accessories and shoes. In the creative process a great emphasis is put on quality, material, design, comfort and durability. By designing simple, functional clothes, Acne aims to create a modern framework for individuality.
Design Philosophy 
Acne makes clothes that are designed to enhance and strengthen the style and personality of the wearer. The clothes are designed to give, not to take energy from the individual. The philosophy behind the brand is that, while every collection forms a concept, each piece can still be worn separately and effortlessly be mixed with other brands to create an individual style. The design process is still directed by founder and creative director Jonny Johansson.
Acne – part of the creative ACNE collective from Stockholm
ACNE was established in 1996 as a creative collective. The company’s basic strategy and ambition was to work with design and communication consulting as well as launching own ACNE branded products. The initial efforts led to work in, for example, various fields of advertising and graphic design as well as internet gaming and TV production. In the beginning most projects were done for external clients on a consultancy basis, but gradually internal projects developed into brands and companies in their own right. Today, apart from Acne, the creative ACNE collective also consists of Acne Film (film production), Acne Digital (animations and character development), Acne Advertising (advertising), Acne Art Department (design) and Acne Paper (bi-annual magazine). All members of the collective are independent entities acting in their own right in various fields of creativity, however they all share the same culture and vision. Acne started out in 1997 when the company designed 100 pairs of jeans in raw denim with red stitching. The jeans were distributed to friends, family and clients. They soon became incredibly popular and the company was contacted by several stores and boutiques that wanted to carry the brand. The first collection was launched in 1998. Acne are currently employing approximately two hundred people, of which 50 % are working in our Acne Studios (Acne concept shops).
Acne - the Awards
Acne has received all major Swedish design awards. In 2000 Acne received the ELLE magazine’s “ELLEN award” for “Designer of the Year”. In 2003 the company won the Cafe Magazine fashion award and in 2004 Acne received the “Guldknappen award” for best design, from the major Swedish fashion magazine “Damernas Varld”. The following year, 2005, Acne was presented with ELLE magazine’s “ELLEN award” for “Denim Designer of the Year”, in 2007 Acne’s Creative Director Jonny Johansson received King magazine’s award for “Most Influential Person in Menswear Design”, and in 2008 Acne once again received ELLE magazine’s “ELLEN award” for “Designer of the Year” followed 2009 with a second fashion award from Cafe Magazine. Acne is the only fashion brand in Sweden to ever receive all six awards.
Acne Studios
In 2003 the first Acne Studio was established in PK-Huset in central Stockholm. During the following year a second Studio was opened in central Copenhagen. In 2005 three more Studios were opened in the cities of Stockholm, Copenhagen and Berlin. From 2006 until today Acne has opened several Studios per year. Today there are 30 Acne Studios worldwide. Acne Studios has today Studios in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, France, Great Britain, United States and Australia.
Acne retailers and wholesale
Acne is sold at more than 650 stores in 50 countries. Among the well known stores that carry the collections are Lane Crawford and I.T. in Hong Kong, Biffi and Penelope in Italy, Browns, Selfridges and Liberty in London, Le Bon Marche and Galeries Lafayette in Paris, Barney’s, Bergdorf Goodman and Opening Ceremony in New York and Restir and Isetan in Tokyo. In order to conduct worldwide sales Acne today has offices/showrooms in Paris, London, New York, Stockholm, Copenhagen and
Press material is available at
Further information
Greta Johnsen, PR, Acne, + 46 8 555 799 42, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


A.F. Vandevorst


An Vandevorst and Filip Arickx, The design duo behind A F Vandevorst first met at Antwerp's Royal Academy in 1987. The couple, now married, have wonseveral awards including the Venus de la Mode.
Prior to starting the collection An Vandevorst worked as first assistant to Dries Van Noten and Filip worked as a freelance designer and stylist.

The A F Vandevorst collection includes sportswear, footwear, accessories and lingerie. In 2000 the duo designed a line for Italian leather Company Ruffo Research.

Looking for additional Fashion Designer biographies? 
Visit our 
Fashion Designer Index.

Haider Ackermann


Haider Ackermann, the Colombian-born designer who has been described by some insiders as “the new Yves Saint Laurent” and is being tipped for one of the top candidates to replace John Galliano at Dior.

The designer was born in Colombia and adopted by French parents who traveled extensively through Africa and Europe working for Amnesty International. Ackermann finally landed at the Royal Academy in Antwerp, where his work caught the attention by using a draping and layering techniques. His aesthetic style is inspired by different cultures and fuses an unpredictable palette with elegant touches.

Due to financial reasons, he left the academy after three years. He interned withJohn Galliano and Wim Neels. He showed his design sketches to his friend Raf Simons, who encouraged him to start up on his own and helped him with fabric manufacturers and press agents.

During Paris Fashion Wee, he showed his collection for Spring/Summer 2004. In 2003, Ackermann has also been elected a member of the French Fashion Federation, the governing body of French Haute Couture. In December 2004, Haider won the prestigious Swiss Textiles award which is presented at the GWAND fashion festival in Lucerne, Switzerland. He was presented with 100,000 Euros prize

In 2009 he has been offered the creative directorship of the cult Belgian brandMartin Margiela, who got retired in 2009, but he apparently declined.

After the disgraced John Galliano in February 2011 he is the most talked-about man at the Paris prêt-à-porter season, that he might be considering a move to become creative director at Dior.

Dries Van Noten


Born in Antwerp in 1958, Dries Van Noten is the third generation in a family of tailors. Between the two world wars, his grandfather reworked second-hand clothes by turning them inside out and introduced Antwerp to the concept of ready-to-wear. In 1970 Dries’ father opened a large upscale fashion boutique in the outskirts of Antwerp followed by a second outlet in the city centre where he sold collections by Ungaro, Ferragamo and Zegna. At the same time, his mother ran a Cassandre franchised store and collected antique lace and linen.

From his education at a Jesuit school, Dries acquired great moral strength and a very practical outlook on life. His family background ensured that he was introduced to the world of fashion, its rites and traditions from the youngest age.

As a boy, he went with his father to see the shows and collections in Milan, Düsseldorf and Paris where he learnt all about the commercial and technical side of the profession. However, he soon decided that he was more interested in designing fashions than selling them. In 1976, at the age of 18, he entered the fashion design course of Antwerp’s Royal Academy. While continuing his studies, Van Noten began to work as a freelance designer for commercial collections for a Belgian manufacturer. This practical experience would prove invaluable when he started to produce and retail his own designs. The same year he met Christine Mathys who would be his business partner and tireless champion until her death in 1999

After graduating, Dries Van Noten continued to freelance before going onto producing his own collection of blazers, shirts and trousers. The line met with almost immediate success on its launch in 1986 selling to prestigious customers like Barneys New York, Pauw in Amsterdam and Whistles in London.

In September of the same year, Dries Van Noten opened a tiny eponymous boutique in Antwerp’s gallery arcade. Here he sold his men’s and women’s collections, which were initially made from the same fabrics.

In 1989, he quit his modest boutique for a five-storey former department store in the Nationalestraat, then a down-at-heel district with little promise.  Ironically, this listed historical building had once housed his grandfather’s greatest competitor.  Van Noten set about restoring it, retaining many of the original fixtures and fittings, including the name Het Modepaleis.  Today the area is noted for its upmarket boutiques.


With the company expanding quickly, Van Noten opened a Parisian showroom and press office in a former art gallery in the heart of the Marais.  His first foray outside Antwerp was quickly followed by the opening of a second showroom in Milan.

In July 2000, Dries Van Noten moved into the 60,000 sq ft warehouse on Godefriduskaai, Antwerp, which had billeted both German and Allied troops during the war. This six-storey industrial space now houses the showroom, design, marketing, production, accounts and distribution departments and archives to reflect the logical order of a collection. The top floor is thus given over to the showroom which enjoys breathtaking views across the entire city. 

In January 2007, Dries Van Noten opened a boutique in Paris. Here, Dries Van Noten set out to preserve the soul and history of the listed 17th century building in the very heart of Paris. Number 7, Quai Malaquais is an old bookshop which stands between rue Bonaparte and rue de Seine, close to the Académie Française, the Institut, and the Académie des Beaux-Arts de Paris.

March 2009 had been punctuated by a new boutique opening in Tokyo.

Dries Van Noten has been entirely self-financed since the beginning of his career and now sells his Men’s, Women’s and Accessories collections all over the world. In addition to his boutiques in Antwerp, Paris, Singapore, Kuwait, Qatar, Dubai, Hong Kong and Tokyo, Dries Van Noten works in partnership with some four hundred boutiques in cities such as New York, London, Milan, Berlin, Moscow…

In June 2008, the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA) honoured Dries Van Noten with the International Award, followed in December 2008 by the distinction of “Royal Designer for Industry” (RDI) from the RSA Trustee Board in London.

From October 2008 to January 2009, Mrs. Christine ALBANEL, French Minister of Culture & Communication, offered Dries Van Noten a “CARTE BLANCHE”: each of the six main windows of the French Ministry had been invested with each theme and major emotion of the SS09 Women Collection.

In 2009, Dries was awarded « Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres » in Paris; the Flemish Chamber of Commerce (VOKA) inducted him into the « Galerie des Eminents »; the Flemish Royal Academy of Belgium gifted him with the Gold Medal (“Gouden Penning”), and the Couture Council of the Museum at FIT in New-York honoured him with the “Couture Council Award for Artistry of Fashion”.

Dries Van Noten will preside the 25th edition of the “Festival International de Mode et de Photographie” of Hyeres (France), from April 30th to May 3rd 2010.



Tim Van Steenbergen


Tim Van Steenbergengraduated Magna cum Laude at the Antwerp Royal Academy of Fine Arts (fashion department, textile creation and theatre costume).Subsequently he took classes in drapery and couture techniques and worked as the first assistant of Olivier Theyskens.
His first collection was launched in 2001 in Paris and in the same year he set up his company Mitzlavv bvba.

Meanwhile he's up to his twenty first collection/fashion show and the label Tim Van Steenbergen is being sold in the best designer shops all over the world.  His style evolves into a refined pureness and female elegance.  He is a master of contemporary drapery and every detail, high quality standards, tradition and craftsmanship are being cared for.
"Le Petit Livre Blanc", a publication on Tim is a booklet printed on hand-layered paper evokes his special story.
Tim Van Steenbergenalso created jewellery for Swarovski UK, shoes for Novella Italia, "Barbie" outfits, a jean for Xfit by Lycra, an haute couture dress for the Museum of Fine Arts  and Lace in Calais (France) and the bag "le Seau Elsa" for the French label Lancel.

He presented a fashion show for Prince Philippe and Princess Mathilde on the Belgian Gala Night during an economic mission in Warshaw (Poland).

Further Tim Van Steenbergen exposed four haute couture dresses within the project "Framed",  in The Groeninge Museum in Brugge, UCAD Louvre Parisand at the occasion of the motion pictures festival in Cannes.   He also set up an installation "Stills" at the Biënnale of Venice in 2003, besides several other expositions into which he participated.
As artistic director of the fashion company Donaldson he designed 3 collections.
He created the uniforms for the attendants of the Flemish Parliament.

In collaboration with the well-established shoe manufacturer Ambiorix, 
Tim van Steenbergenis enlarging his women and men’s collections with a selected choice of shoe designs, made by hand in Belgium. 
For Theo, he creates the sunglasses ‘Theo by Tim Van Steenbergen’.

International personalities as Jennifer Lopez, Rihanna, Dita Von Teese, Kimberly Stewart, Hilary Duff, Katy Perry, Axelle Red, Micha Barton, Kim Cattrall, Jared Leto and George Michael have been spotted in  Tim Van Steenbergen.

Tim Van Steenbergenis artistic director for the label Luc.Duchene, well known before as Chine, Belgian Design.

Tim designs the costumes for international movie, theatre, dance and opera creations as for Anne Teresa de Keersmaecker and Guy Cassiers.

Hanjo’, opera, Festival Lyrique d’Aix-en-Provence / the Monnaie Brussels.
‘Hersenschimmen’, theater, Ro Theater Rotterdam.
‘d’Un Soir un Jour’ and ‘Steve Reich Evening’, dance, Rosas / the Monnaie Brussels.
‘Triptych of Power; ‘Mefisto’, ‘Wolfskers’ and ‘Atropa’, theater, Toneelhuis Antwerp / Festival d’Avignon / Théâtre de la Ville de Paris.
‘The House of the Sleeping Beauties’, opera, LOD / Toneelhuis Antwerp / the Monnaie Brussels.
‘Adam in Exile’, opera, Opera of Amsterdam.
‘La Chanteuse du Tango’, movie by Diego Martinez Vignatti with Eugénia Ramirez.
‘Das Rheigold’, Teatro alla Scala / Staatsoper Unter den Linden.
‘’Blood & Roses, the Song of Joan and Gilles’,Toneelhuis Antwerp / Festival d’Avignon.
‘Die Walküre’, Teatro alla Scala / Staatsoper Unter den Linden.
‘Labyrinth’, National Ballet Amsterdam, Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui.
Between 2010 and 2013 Tim Van Steenbergenis creating the costumes for Richard Wagner’s opera cycle ‘Der Ring des Nibelungen’
Belgian director Guy Cassiers, who has astonished Europe with his highly original productions, gets this long-awaited Ring off to a start at La Scala. Conducted by Daniel Barenboim, the perfect Wagnerian.
Der Ring des Nibelungenis a co-production by the Teatro alla Scala in Milan and the Staatsoper Unter den Linden in Berlin.

‘Tim Van Steenbergen, act(e)’, a book by fashion journalist Veerle Windels has been released by Ludion Publishers.

Recently ‘ The Metronome ’, a light design by Tim Van Steenbergen for Delta Light, has been launched and will be available beginning of 2012. 

Yohji Yamamoto


Yamamoto is known for an avant-garde spirit in his clothing, frequently creating designs far removed from current trends. His signature oversized silhouettes in black often feature drapery in varying textures.Yamamoto became an influential fashion designer after making his Paris debut in 1981. His commercially successful main line, Yohji Yamamoto (women/men) and the diffusion line Y's, are especially popular in Tokyo. These two lines are also available at his flagship stores in New York, Paris, and Antwerp, and at high-end department stores worldwide. Yohji Yamamoto Inc. reported in 2007 that the sales of Yamamoto's two main lines average above $100 million annually.

Yamamoto's work has also become familiar to consumers through his collaborations with other fashion brands, including Adidas (Y-3),HermèsMikimoto and Mandarina Duck; and with artists of different genres, such as Sir Elton JohnPlaceboTakeshi KitanoPina Bausch and Heiner Müller.

Poor decisions by finance managers pushed the brand into debts of more than 65 million US dollars in 2009, which angered Yamamoto and led to a company restructuring from 2009 to 2010. The private equity firm Integral Corp was identified as the Japanese company who will restructure the Yohji Yamamoto Inc and by November 2010 the company was out of debt and avoiding the risk of bankruptcy.