Tuesday, November 2, 2010

How Alber Elbaz Forced Me To Buy A Sleeping Bag...Maybe.

We still have a few weeks of waiting until the Lanvin for H&M collection hits stores Nov. 23rd, but for those of you who are scratching and shimmying in anticipation, the look book is here!

OK. #Kamilahfacts: I dislike waiting in line. I dislike crowds more. I especially dislike digging through messy racks of clothing, and the people who are inevitably in your way also digging through the same messy rack, and who you have to have the "are you going to move back so I can pass or am I moving for you?" showdown. It's too intense. I mean, I'm winning the showdown and all, but still...

Point being, although these high end designer collaborations with stores at the other end of the price point spectrum are often appealing, I have never made it a point to check them out on the first day. Besides, the garments rarely live up to their full-price counterparts, neither in design nor in materials. Why would I elbow someone right in the nose over that?

But Alber Elbaz, the creative director of Lanvin and the man who resurrected the label in 2001, seeks to make me change my mind. His intention in doing the H&M collaboration is to add a luxury range to H&M, not to take Lanvin downmarket. Allegedly, this is not dress for less.

He commented to The New Yorker last year “I have a problem to do a collection that is a secondary line. I mean, you don’t want to be the stepsister. You want to be Cinderella. Show me one girl who wants to be the stepsister,” leading many to believe that he would never do a collaboration with H&M. But it seems that he will try his best to bring a true sense of Lanvin to the masses, just this once.

In an interview with WWD, Elbaz says “I’m in an industry of dreams and excitement and love and beauty. I’m not feeling that I’m a part of this mega industry of billion dollars. At Lanvin, we’re an independent company — we are very far from this.” "Ninety-five per cent of women cannot afford [Lanvin] so let them have a taste. It's like if I was living in a palace and opened some doors and said, 'Have tea with me, taste the food'."

How very Marie Antoinette of him! I'll be considering waiting outside those palace doors, I do love cake.

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