THE SCENE: For one of the most anticipated designer collaborations, H&M this time was duly prepared for the launch. There was a long line outside of the store, however once inside, the crowd was calm and controlled, an army of staff was available, and the ground floor of the H&M flaghip on 51st and 5th Avenue was completely rearranged to accommodate the day. An hour and a half into the doors opening, the racks and display tables were still neat and fully stocked with a range of clothe and accessories while peoplke seemed to mill about and wait in the other line at the back of the store to try on shoes. This was the most interesting part of the whole event: people had to go to the second floor to get a wristband and then proceed back down stairst o wait in line to be entered into the “shoe holding pen” in groups — on a time limit! Once you’re time was up, you had to get out of the ring and head right to the cashier, which was a row of waiting employees, one foot away. Kudos to H&M for finally figuring out how to properly manage these launches!
The COLLECTION: Although I’d been looking at pics online for ages, I realized that seeing the clothes and just looking at pictures of them can be two entirely different things! The clothing tended to be more of the evening sort and of on par quality with H&M, with embroidery and sequins galore, faux fur vest, jumpsuits, suede dresses, and plastic clutches, while the shoes were actually a little less exciting in person. My suggestion: less clothes, more shoes, overall lower price points.
If Jimmy Choo & H&M expect people to pay $100-$150 for four-inch-heels that provide zero padding or support, why won’t they just charge $50-$75? Lest we not forget that a designer collaboration in this nature is a teaming up of a designer brand with a lower-priced retailer — just because I’d like to pay less money for a pair of Jimmy Choos doesn’t mean that my tolerance of footpain would be any different than anyone who would pay $500 or $600 for a pair of shoes.
So in conclusion — good try, but I, and I think a lot of other people, would at least be willing to rationalize 4-inch-heels that are killers, for $49.99, but the pricing of this collection is a little too much to rationalize on that front. Even though we may be pinching pennies these days, there are certain things that just shouldn’t be sacrficied-like well-made, comfortable footwear. Walking over to the H&M flagship I dropped off three pairs of shoes that I love to be re-heeled and re-soled for a total of $60 — now that’s a deal!