On November 5th, H&M released it’s latest exclusive fashion collaboration with Balmain. Working with Balmain’s visionary head designer, Olivier Rouseteing, the collaboration yielded nearly 200 items in total, and nearly 50 items for men, including jackets, shoes, t-shirts, and accessories. The highly anticipated collection was made available for retail and online sale at 8am on November 5th, and sold out within minutes. HuesofMan was lined up at the H&M in the Houston Galleria for over 12 hours to bring you this look at the innovative collection.
With the items only available in select stores and online, thousands queued up at select H&M stores across the country to grab the goods. My friend Yanira and I survived the pillaging in 2 Texas cities, and now, we get to share our loot with you! We hope you enjoy our in-depth review of the Balmain x H&M collection as we highlight our purchases from the women’s and men’s line. #HMBALMAINATION
And now, a special word from guest blogger Yanira Leon
PREPPING FOR THE RELEASE: Online or In Line?
It’s been a week since the Balmain & H&M collection was released to the public. Prior to the release date, I had read an article that gave both RJ and I tips on how to conquer and shop for a highly coveted collection like this. One of my struggles was deciding whether I should shop for the collection online or wait in line.
The day before the collection, I had a feeling that the line in Austin would not be like other cities. Although Austin is one of the fastest growing cities, it does not have the high fashion presence and demand as its counterparts in Houston and Dallas.
THE DAY: Waiting in Line
I originally planned to get to H&M around 6am. Needless to say, I’m not a morning person, so I didn’t get there until 7am. Oops! There were about 100 people lined up. As an veteran “line stander” having done SXSW like a pro, 100 people was not that bad. I met a cute couple who drove from El Paso and were in town for the week. The staff gave a quick announcement of the drill: It would be groups of 10, everyone would get a color coordinated wristband, and we would have 15 minutes to shop. I was initially told it would be groups of 30, but the shopping space was smaller. The line was efficient and everyone was under control. The staff was going down the line doing Starbucks refills. It was 10:30am when I was taken to the collection area to shop. In total i waited 3.5 hrs.
The Shopping Showdown
Before we were released to the Balmain collection, the staff double-checked our wristbands and gave us the drill once more. During the actual shopping I was so excited and nervous.While shifting through the clothes my hands were shaking. I was so focused on the items that I wanted that I didn’t think of looking at the accessories or even peruse the other items. I had my 3 items and headed towards the fitting room to try on the size 6 peacoat, I’m usually a size 4, but I knew the sizes would run smaller, this being Balmain. In the frantic rush, I didn’t try on my velvet top which ended up being a bit fitted. I rushed over to the cashier and impatiently waited to be rung up.
TIPS FOR SHOPPING A H&M COLLAB
1. Do your Research:
Go to the H&M store and get the details from the manager
on how the line system will work. Then pick out your target pieces on the website.
2. Check social media:
Twitter is your best resource. People live tweet about the line
and post pictures so you’ll be able to gauge the wait and line.
3. Don’t shop online:
Even if you have 3 devices ready, the website always crashes.
This collection sold out online in 5 minutes!
5. Try on the items:
Although you may have a limited amount of time
you should make the best effort to try the items on. If you get the
wrong size you are pretty much out of luck.