STILL a little surprising to cover Hennes & Mauritz in
the context of the United States. It may be half a decade since
Swedish label H&M crossed the
Atlantic and wooed American customers, but its still quintessentially
European. So to hear that H&M
Live at Central Park took place recently was a surprise.
this would give its label the hip-hop, cutting-edge chic that Swedes
believe New York holds. In the audience were celebrities galore,
from Kanye West and Mario Vasquez to Oscar nominee Catalina Sanino
Moreno (Maria Full of Grace). Models Karen Elson, Alek Wek
and Missy Rayder were also present.
In some respects, the American halo effect worked,
with H&Ms tents, 15,000
ft² at the companys disposal, and 16 ft of orchids that
guests had to pass through. The company claimed it was the biggest
fashion event in the city.
One hundred and fifty models participated as H&M
showed off its autumnwinter collection.
The folklore theme was most evident, even if the
company talked about minimalism as well as Baroccoco
(rock and roll romanticism, according to the press release).
We felt that there was more baroque than minimalism
overall, showcasing what is still a very European collection. Despite
the venue, H&M hasnt Americanized,
and has stayed true to its roots. The only thing that was American
was the performances that accompanied the catwalk show, as West,
John Legend and Miri Ben-Ari worked their magic. DJ
Spinna worked the after-party.