News & Runway

H&M Snags Lanvin’s Alber Elbaz

A few days ago, a mysterious H&M video was released that featured a designer whose face was blocked out, but from his gestures and the words that he was speaking, many assumed that it was Lanvin designer Alber Elbaz.

Turns out it was indeed Elbaz, and the designer will be the latest A-lister to collaborate with the mass market retailer for a limited edition designer collection.

This news is especially surprising given the Lanvin designer’s previous remarks that he would never do a mass market-priced line – kudos to H&M and their powers of persuasion.

The announcement also puts an end to the endless speculation as to who the retailer will collaborate with next.

Rumors swirled that it would be Bottega Veneta’s Tomas Maier, Carolina Herrera, or Diane Von Furstenberg, and even Vivienne Westwood was deemed a possibility.

Designed by Lanvin’s artistic director Alber Elbaz, and mens wear designer Lucas Ossendrijver, the collection will go on sale in around 200 H&M stores on November 20th in North America, and on November 23rd in the rest of the world.
The collection of both womenswear and menswear will be revealed on November 2nd through a special film on – a first for the retailer .
The bow tie clad designer can now be seen – face and all – in an H&M video in which he details how the collection came about.
In the video, the designer remarks that when H&M approached the Lanvin team to
collaborate and see if they could translate the dream they created at Lanvin to a wider audience, not just a dress for less, he was intrigued.
Specifically he was enticed by "the idea of H&M going luxury rather than Lanvin going public. This has been an exceptional exercise, where two companies at opposite poles can work together because we share the same philosophy of bringing joy and beauty to men and women around the world.”
Elbaz has been the artistic director at Lanvin for nearly a decade and since taking on the role in 2001, his designs have graced countless red carpets.
This collaboration will certainly be one of the most hotly anticpated, and I’m crossing my fingers that a version of the Lanvin gown Maggie Gyllenhaal wore to the 2009 Golden Globes makes it into the show.
Previous brands to collaborate with H&M, for limited edition collections, include Karl Lagerfeld, Stella McCartney, Comme des Garçons, and Sonia Rykiel.