The first thing that strikes a visitor to the Danish capital is likely to be a bicycle, unless the visitor has their wits about them.

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Many of the Danish children’s brands, such as Norlie, Katvig and Mini a Ture, use either organic cotton or trade heavily on their eco-friendly credentials, reflecting their customers’ willingness to pay for ethically sourced products.

On the label of a cardigan from Serendipity, it says: “Our buttons are made from tagua nut, coconut, or sea shells or other natural materials.” Some parents may tire of this eco-boasting, but with the high prices comes beautiful clothes. I particularly liked the parka-style jackets from Mini a Ture, which had soft fleecy linings, and the oval-spotted dresses from Norlie (a favourite of Denmark’s Crown Princess Mary) for £100.

From great little presents and Christmas decorations to serious pieces of statement furniture, Illums Bolighus is a pilgrimage site for anyone who loves Scandinavian design.

Normann Copenhagen is one of the big brands on sale here.

At the Kongens Nytorv end of Strøget is the spectacular Magasin du Nord (Kongens Nytorv 13,1095), which looks like a Haussmann-style hotel in Paris.

It is the flagship branch of Denmark’s biggest chain of department stores — though, in fact, it is owned by Debenhams.

And they confirm that what happens in Copenhagen — in interior design, fashion and transport — is replicated later in London.

The Danes have a saying: “No-one can save everyone, but everyone can save someone”.

Indeed, one of the highlights is the womenswear department, which showcases the most famous Scandinavian womenswear brands, not least Acne, a Swedish label which has achieved cult-like status among many fashionistas.

The off-putting name in fact stands for “Ambition to create novel expression”, and it has championed a distinct Scandi look: sleek and minimal while still being slightly offbeat and grungy. On sale last week were £1,680 bomber jackets and a stunning textured apricot silk blouse for £210.

Lorna Hall, head of retail at the fashion industry forecasters WGSN, says: “It seems refreshing to us in the UK.