The Fashion Statement: Lanvin at H&M!
I can see the lines snaking around the block now! H&M confirmed it: Men and women will be able to get themselves some Lanvin at about 200 H&M stores on Nov. 23, according to Women's Wear Daily.
Word broke yesterday that the sizzling hot Paris label may be collaborating with cheap chic retailer H&M. Fashion industry bible WWD reported that the Swedish retailer was expected to announce plans with Lanvin and its creative director Alber Elbaz within the coming week.
Upon hearing the news yesterday, the fashion blogs went nuts, writing things like "Yes, Please!" and "Cross your fingers." Even a few well-heeled ladies I talked to vowed they would pick up a piece or ten from the capsule collection.
To wet our appetites, H&M has been posting 23-second highly stylized black and white videos on Facebook and Youtube. Quotes from a mystery designer comes through the mouths of male and female actors captured in flashing images that show everything but an actual face. Initially, the rumor mill focused on Tomas Maier of Bottega Venetta and Carolina Herrera as possible originators of the quotes. Then, WWD wrote yesterday: "While the camera never lingers on the faces long enough for recognition in the clips, the voice-over of designer musings, while electronically altered, are unmistakable Elbaz-isms."
"Design is very important because it actually brings dream to our life," is one of those Elbaz-isms.
If you're not familiar with Lanvin, to a fashionista, this brand is the coolest kid in the school. Even more so now that the industry has lost Alexander McQueen. A collaboration with H&M is huge.
H&M has championed guest-star designers for years, linking up with Karl Lagerfeld, Stella McCartney and even Madonna. Other cheap retailers like Target has exposed designers like Rodarte, Erin Fetherston and Zac Posen to the masses.
Elbaz, a portly congenial man who wears a bow-tie and dark thick-rimmed spectacles, is famous in the fashion world and among Hollywood actresses, but not exactly a household name. A collaboration with H&M might fix that. And courting an entry level consumer now might pay off for Lanvin down the road. Long-term thinking is not a bad thing these days.
This is a complete about face for Lanvin. Elbaz told The New Yorker recently that he would not be introducing a spin-off of Lanvin at a cheaper price point anytime soon....anywhere. Elbaz told the magazine he would never do a secondary line because, he asked, what woman wants to be the stepsister? She wants to be Cinderella.
I guess he changed his mind.