Eytys’ Max Schiller On What to Do in Lockdown-Free Stockholm
The Swedish designer discusses life in one of the few countries free from quarantines.
“We live in a new reality,” says Max Schiller, the founder of the footwear brand Eytys. Of course, it’s a reality shaped by the seismic changes caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the long-term ramifications of which are as yet unknown. But for Schiller, life under coronavirus has been markedly different from many of his peers, as Stockholm is one of few European cities that wasn’t forced into lockdown throughout the summer. Bars, restaurants and public spaces remained open, even as the rest of the world seemed to be shutting up shop.
It was a surreal experience. “I felt sorry for my friends around the world in confinement,” he says. “It must have been very hard. We have been blessed to have had the freedom to move around.” In spite of Sweden’s more relaxed regulations, though, the mood in the air was notably different. “Although we didn’t have a lockdown, people here tend to be obedient and follow the recommendations,” he says, “even if they aren’t requirements by law. So there are almost no events, parties, shows or concerts – at least not that I’m invited to. It feels like Stockholm is only just returning to life.”
Here, Schiller shares what an ideal afternoon in Stockholm looks like now.
“I’d start off with lunch at the grand old restaurant Sturehof. I’d Order the dish “5 assietter” which is a serving of some of the most iconic dishes from the Swedish “smörgåsbord”. Wash it down with beer and their house aquavit.”
“Slightly buzzed, stop by the department store NK to check out the new Eytys store that opened on March 16th (the same day as COVID struck Sweden with force, timing could have been better…).”
“From there, take a walk by the water to the Vasa Museum and admire an impressive war ship that sunk on its maiden voyage in 1628. It’s the perfect place to cool down, as it’s one of few places with blasting air condition in Stockholm (too prevent the wreck from rotting).”
“Take the commuter ferry from Djurgården to Skeppsholmen and head to Moderna Museet and enjoy the current John Baldessari exhibition.”
“Go to Södermalm (the south side of town), to shop at the best menswear store Nitty Gritty. Stop at Papercut next door for Sweden’s best selection of magazines. Around the corner is Herr Judit, a decent men’s second hand shop. On the way back to the centre, make a stop at Racamaca for some pintxos and Txakoli wine.”
Round off the night at Babette for great food and wine. And remember to keep a safe distance and regularly wash your hands!