More than a few weeks back, I attended the H&M Fall 2013 Press Preview with a senior of mine, Dyon (blogging at nobilii.com), and perchance Thalia, who made for an excellent impromptu model. And unlike one of my previous posts where I had my faithful classmates 'guest-drafting' my blog post for me, Dyon's my actual guest-blogger this time round, helping me out with the menswear side of things:
Our first impression of the H&M Autumn/Winter 2013 Menswear Collection was, besides them being hugely over-sized at the Press Preview(the sample sizes were from M to XXL and I’m generally an XS/S), was the thickness of the fabrics used (fitting for cold winter nights... which we enjoy much often in sunny Singapore within shopping malls and air-conditioned classrooms).
H&M has decided to use a successful muted color palette of olives, browns and the usual black / white for its collection with a hint of dark blue and royal purple here and there which is practically made for the cold seasons (although one or two more bloody bright colors would have been a nice surprise). Coats, quilted jackets, sweaters, shirts drawing inspiration from utilitarianism and military wear, come in wool, tweed and rayon in the aforementioned colors which are sure to be staples in every guy’s wardrobe (especially the cable-knit sweaters and cotton shirts).
Guys seeking formal wear (blazers, suits, trousers) will not be disappointed by the offerings H&M have especially since they come in shades of grey and blue (one cannot go wrong with a grey suit)!
One of the highlights of the preview on my WANT list was definitely an army green weave-knit sweater I saw (but it was too big for me of course) in a pattern reminiscent of Bottega Veneta’s signature weave apparel/accessories, and a rose-printed silk tie that was lying in a tray with other must-get accessories like leather gloves and hats which are bound to add a nice finishing touch to an outfit.
And if you look through the womenswear collection and think "Great Gatsby, it's old glamour!" (especially the fringe neck-piece, a special favorite of Thalia's and mine), or "Spanish bull-fighting" even - because that was the first thing that came to mind when I saw some of the details - you've got it, yet you haven't.
The collection isn't so streamlined as to fit right next into the men's collection, or focus on any one concrete theme. Instead, it jumps around a bit, playing with some utilitarian looks, and drawing inspiration from history (who said it couldn't teach you lessons?) - my "Spanish bull-fighting" pieces turned out to be adaptations of old military costumes. Along the way, you get some hardcore biker-chic looks with full-leather pants, and a hugely over-sized leather vest that's lined with fluffy wool.
The accessories proved both flamboyant and essential - detailed metal flower necklaces, and velvet shoes and accessories accentuated by metal detail. H&M has more or less jumped onto the bandwagon of clutches with straps for you to insert your hands into, although the particular one we looked at was ghastly heavy, given that the shoulder strap was a thick chain.
And exactly how far are they trying to portray this "in the past" theme? They've taken to purposely making holes in a pink pullover, with a large white H sewn on it, in order to perpetuate some vintage effect. Yup. No returns on that one.
(Also, I couldn't resist a picture of food.) (Also, fun fact that they're working with Isabel Marant for their next collaboration, if you haven't heard yet.)