Joan Smalls, Adriana Lima, Doutzen and More Celebrate Summer with H&M

Courtesy of H&M

Here in NYC, we’re dealing with a spring that seems perfectly content to simply not exist–40 degrees and rainy–come on.

None of that for H&M though. The fashion powerhouse is 100% ready for summer and getting ready to launch their bikini-filled campaign starring Joan Smalls, Natasha Poly, Doutzen Kroes, and Adriana Lima.

To celebrate the campaign, they’re keeping things local, which for them means Swedish, with an exclusive track by Axwell /\ Ingrosso, who are set to debut their first album since parting ways with Swedish House Mafia this summer.

axwell ingrosso
Photo: Courtesy of H&M

Watch for the video and song elements of the campaign to hit on April 30th, but in the meantime, start dreaming up your warmer weather getaways now with highlights from the summer collection, all of which will be available on April 30th!



Find Your Next Prized Possession at L.A.’s Global Fashion Exchange

There’s really nothing better than a good thrifted find. It’s a beautiful feeling to find yourself clutching a new (to you) treasure, wondering why/how on earth its previous owner could have let it go.

But that’s the thing. Fashion moves at a rapid pace, and as the saying goes, “one gal’s trash…”–you know the drill.

Should you be in L.A. this Thursday evening, the gang here in NYC highly envy your opportunity to check out the GFX–Global Fashion Exchange— where entry is granted upon bringing at least one item of gently worn clothing that just isn’t doing it for you anymore.

global fashion exchange

Not only could you wind up with a find so good you can hardly believe it, but in fact, recycling fashion is one good thing we can do for the environment.

The event is hosted in collaboration with H&M, Ford Motor Company, the Danish Fashion Institute and InTandem Creatives and aims to combat the terrifying statistics about our society’s continual waste of textiles. In 2010 alone, an estimated $250 million worth of textiles were sent to landfills.

recycle cltohes

Check it out on Thursday, November 20th, from 4-8 PM, Hollywood & Highland.

H & M Causes Hysteria In Tel Aviv & Toulouse (Not LA)

A friend living in Tel Aviv just sent me video of the opening of H&M’s first Israeli outpost. A description of the scene this morning reads as follows: “at 11 A.M. the doors opened and the crowd stormed into the 2,000-square meter store on the mall’s third floor, pushing and trampling anyone and anything in its way, grabbing whatever it could before nothing would remain.” Apparently 1,000 or so eager shoppers took to the freshly debuted shop’s racks today with a no holds barred approach. And Tel Aviv’s not the only global capital that saw a stampede run through its local H&M this week.

The same thing happened in Toulouse, France on Saturday, when Sonia Rykiel’s second installation of her line for the retailer debuted. Grazia has footage of the mania here. In both cases women appear to be consuming so crazily you’d think a real life Johnny Depp comes with every purchase.

What’s amazing is not only the determination and frenzy of these shoppers, but the fact that at the same time, halfway around the globe, Sonia Rykiel’s designs are sitting relatively untouched in an H & M in Los Angeles. RackedLA described the latter as indicative of LA’s “indifference” to Rykiel, a bona fide French institution. It’s just another reminder that all of the fuss is most definitely subjective.

Payless, Topshop, H & M Launch Beauty

A handful of discount retailers are launching beauty lines this year. First up are competitors Topshop and H&M. The first is launching cosmetics that will include a continuous core line (which ranges from $8-$20) as well as seasonal installations, the first installment of which launch in May. Not surprisingly the packaging, which boasts an appropriately punk-friendly aesthetic, is on point. Meanwhile, H & M is going green with its soon-to-launch beauty products. “The line includes shower gels, body lotions, scrubs and lip balms that all include natural and organic products certified by Ecocert,” says All the Rage.

Last to announce its foray into beauty is Payless. “Payless Stores, with 1,500 units, will introduce, starting Sept. 1, bath and body products under the names Zoe & Zac and Unforgettable Moments, linking back to proprietary shoe and accessory brands of the same names,” says Women’s Wear Daily. Keeping in line with its inexpensive designer collaborations with everyone from Alice + Olivia to Christian Siriano, there’s one field on which Payless can’t be beat: its price point. WWD says, “beauty products will include a collection of up to 60 items such as lotions, creams, fragrances and color for eyes, lips and nails. Prices will range from $2.99 to $19.99.”

North Korean Jeans Dropped, Cavin Klein to Seoul

It’s been a pretty interesting week in terms of Korean fashion. First, last week reports surfaced that a new North Korean denim brand called NoKo would soon be stocked in a Swedish department store. Apparently the line of limited-edition jeans was the brainchild of “Jakob Ohlsson, Jacob Aastroem and Tor Rauden Kaellstigen — all under the age of 25 — [who] said their project stemmed from a desire to make contact with the isolated communist state,” says the Independent. But, after numerous outlets picked up on the story, adding fuel to the controversy, PUB — the Swedish department store committed to carrying the brand — pulled out. “The explanation I got was that (the store’s management) had taken the decision … that PUB is not the right place, or platform, for this kind of political discussion,” said one of the denim brand’s founders. It might not be the last you hear of NoKo, as the label’s founders are currently searching for alternative stores to stock their black denim (blue is seen as too connected to American culture) in two styles that retail for just over $200 each.

While the aforementioned denim controversy may have been a blow to North Korea’s nonexistent international fashion image, news that Calvin Klein will soon show in South Korea is sure to have the opposite effect. “The spring women’s and men’s lines will be showcased Thursday as installations at the Kring Creative Culture Space, with Korean-American artist Jean Shin doing the honors for the women’s collection and British curator Neville Wakefield creating one for the men’s,” says Women’s Wear Daily. The choice to house the event in South Korea was anything but accidental; in fact, Korea is Calvin Klein’s second-most important Asian market when it comes to global sales. And Calvin Klein isn’t the only major brand looking to the region: H&M plans to open its first stores in South Korea as early as 2010.

Sonia Rykiel’s No-Pants Look Coming to H&M

H&M continues to roll out covetable collaborations with top-notch designers. Their latest partner in crime: Sonia Rykiel. According to Women’s Wear Daily, the Parisian designer (renowned for whimsical, dynamic designs) will create a collection of lingerie for the budget-friendly retailer that’ll debut in time for the holiday season. Specifically, “The collection is to be launched Dec. 5 in 1,500 H&M stores worldwide, and also at Rykiel boutiques — the first time a guest designer for H&M will do so. The French firm counts 44 boutiques worldwide, along with 52 shop-in-shops.”

Given the fact that no-pants and bustiers (which Rykiel’s collection will ideally include) are dominating catwalks for SS10, there couldn’t be a better time for H&M to cash in on the trend of lingerie moonlighting as standalone clothing. And good news for those prospective shoppers not living near an H&M or Rykiel outpost: “Rykiel’s next project is the November launch of an e-commerce site in France, where customers will be able to shop for the brand’s signature knitwear and playful accessories. The plan is to expand online sales to American, Japan and the U.K. next year.” So, while H&M hasn’t boarded the e-commerce bandwagon just yet, rest assured you can snag high-end lingerie for a low-end price point from anywhere you can get an internet signal.

Jimmy Choo + H&M: Faux Fur & Strappy Heel Heaven

Jimmy Choo’s hotly anticipated collaboration with H&M (which includes men’s and women’s wear as well as accessories, hitting stores November 14) has been slowly whetting budget-conscious shoppers’ appetites with sporadic image leaks for weeks. While Hypebeast got a look at the men’s line last week, it wasn’t until yesterday that female Choo fans got a glimpse of their goods.

Both Nitrolicious and Racked have slideshows of the women’s collection that, not surprisingly, includes strappy stilettos (a particularly eye-catching pair come in two-toned blue and black and buckle at the ankles), a faux fur vest, and a few mini-dresses that have Boom Boom Room written all over them. Interestingly enough, there are also quite a few flats (a SS10 runway favorite) in the collection — including ballet flats in zebra print and in black with studs, as well as a pair of ankle boots in a multicolored snakeskin print (studs included). And for shoppers blessed to be in warm weather come November, or those looking ahead to next spring, there’s a great pair of simple black studded sandals that will cost a small fraction of a non-H&M-endorsed Choo.

Crystal Renn’s Beauty Stash

Crystal Renn shows off skin-deep beauty in ads for Dolce & Gabbana, H&M and Saks Fifth Avenue, and in her insightful new book, Hungry, she lets her inner beauty shine. But we wanted the full Crystal Renn experience, so we had to get to the bottom of her on-skin beauty. Luckily, she spilled her beauty bag and let us peek in.

Products 1. DDF Skincare line 2. Giorgio Armani foundation 3. Clarins Eye Revive Beauty Flash Cream 4. Mac Lipstick love in all their red shades. 5. Estee Lauder moisturizer! I LOVE 6. Visene

Favorite fall beauty trend: 7. 80’s makeup and hair

Secret to great skin: 8. Mamie at Mamie’s skin care in NYC saves my skin after tons of makeup and long flights.

Diffusion Lines by the Dozen: Teva Heels!

Apparently the fashion industry is being plagued by a diffusion line epidemic: in just under a week the likes of Temperley, Rag & Bone, Grey Ant, and Thom Browne have announced that they’ll launch lower-priced lines. Temperley, whose dresses can typically retail for over $1,000, is launching a lower-priced line whose price tags will start at a relative mere $57. Of Rag & Bone’s new cheaper offshoot that launches this spring, The Cut says, “the rag & bone/JEAN line will include three styles of jeans in eight colorways while rag & bone/SHIRT will include seven styles, each in three colorways. The new lines wholesale for $70 to $80 while the main line wholesales for $60 to $860.”

As for Thom Browne, the two new diffusion lines “don’t quite have names yet, but are unofficially called Thom Browne ‘classics’ and Thom Browne ‘red/white/blue.'” Fans of Browne’s flood-ready trousers will be happy to know that they can land the aforementioned lines’ wares at 30-40% less than what Browne’s clothing typically retails for. Also, according to, from Grey Ant’s lower-priced line (“Grey Antics,” also the moniker of the brand’s line for Urban Outfitters), shoppers can “expect colorful zip-front minidresses and printed board shorts, most for under $100.” Also in the works: high-heeled Velcro sandals (pictured above) — a collaboration with Teva — that look a lot better than they sound. At this rate, given all of these designer diffusion lines and capsule collections for discount retailers like Target, H&M and Topshop, paying top market price for designer goods seems destined for extinction.