When it was established in 1997, Acne was less a fashion brand, more a high-concept collective. Four friends sat around in a posh Stockholm new build, thinking about product design and sharing a single motivating idea: the Ambition to Create Novel Expressions (Acne, get it?). Led by Jonny Johansson, the team soon created its first item: a conference table – presumably to rest their feet on while thinking up more ideas. But when it was spotted by Tyler Brûlé, who gave the table a double-page spread in Wallpaper* magazine, it provided Acne with a kick of confidence. Since then it’s produced all manner of intelligent – and expensive – things. Advertising campaigns and commercials, a pretty decent magazine called Acne Paper, jewellery using giant slices of agate, branding for another fashion brand, films (including a project with Ridley Scott), odd-shaped luxury furniture that looks like an optical illusion and all sorts of digital cleverness. Not least, a simple, sophisticated fashion brand that has found its way into the wardrobes of fashion editors and stylists the world over. Its shop on Dover Street, Mayfair, the brand’s first standalone store in the UK, represents the coming together of Acne’s many parts, and it looks just as clean, clipped and conceptual as you would imagine. A one-time gallery, it’s a skinny, four-storey affair, wedged in between two Georgian townhouses. Men’s collections hang on the ground floor. Up on the first, giant lumps of amethyst populate a miniature roof garden viewed through a picture window, leading on to Acne’s women’s collections – a slightly smaller, more intimate space – with the brand’s wonderfully wonky furniture to lounge around on. On the top floor is the brand’s bread and butter: women’s shoes and a complete denim collection, plus a small outside area in among the chimney pots.