H&M to collaborate with avant-garde Belgian label Maison Martin Margiela
10:22 GMT, 12 June 2012
Maison Martin Margiela has confirmed that it will be the next designer brand to collaborate with H&M, launching a collection worldwide on November 15.
The Paris-based label, whose elusive Belgian founder left the company in 2009, is much revered in the fashion industry for its avant-garde aesthetic.
And though it does not share the same megabrand status as past H&M collaborators Versace and Jimmy Choo, a cut-price range is likely to enjoy the same kind of success if the excitement surrounding the announcement is any indication.
Maison Martin Margiela will launch a high street collection at H&M in November
Margareta van den Bosch, Creative Advisor at H&M, said: 'Maison Martin Margiela is one of the
most important and influential fashion houses of the past three decades.
'I am so excited by this radical collaboration which will give fashion
lovers around the world the chance to wear special pieces. This collaboration will be a great and memorable
The industry is already abuzz with the prospect of the chance to buy Margiela at H&M prices.
Cut-price line Maison Martin Margiela, much revered in the fashion world for its
avant-garde aesthetic, will be the next label to
collaborate with H&M
First reported in WWD, it was quickly picked up a number of other fashion news outlets. Grazia Daily wrote: 'We're impressed to see the Swedish high-street chain mixing it up by going down the avant-garde route.'
And Racked commented that the collaborators could be a good fit, because 'the disposable nature of H&M clothing actually kind of lends itself to quirky pieces that are fun to dress up in once or twice but aren't going to make up the bulk of your wardrobe.'
But some fashion insiders argue that a
mass-produced line is the antithesis of everything Margiela stands for,
and that his style signature may not translate well on a budget.
'Teaming with H&M shows they want to raise public awareness
to the house, and that’s a big step for the label'
NYMag.com wrote: 'Deconstructed designs can look
amazing when they're well-made from high-quality fabrics, but when
they're not, they can just look, well, shoddy.'
Gabriele Hackworthy, fashion director
at Harper's Bazaar UK, believes that a large-scale collaboration would be a major departure for the Margiela label.
'It is a surprising collaboration,' she said. 'Historically, Margiela has cultivated a mythic quality to their brand.
They’ve never advertised or aspired to communicate in a mass-market way.
'Mr Margiela had always remained
elusive. Teaming with H&M shows they want to raise public awareness
to the house, and that’s a big step for the label.'
Coveted: A Margiela line promises to spark the same kind of demand as the Versace for H&M collection did at London's Regent Street store last autumn
Mr Margiela himself, 55, is widely
considered to be the seventh member of the 'Antwerp Six', a group who
graduated from the city's Royal Academy of Fine Arts in 1981 and put
Belgian fashion on the map.
Famously publicity-shy, he is very rarely photographed, and labels his work anonymously with a chart of numbers in lieu of a tag.
The Maison Martin Margiela label was acquired by Diesel owner Renzo Rosso in 2002, who announced in 2009 that 'Martin has not been there for a long time.
'He is here but not here,' he said in a statement. 'We have a new fresh design team on board. We are focusing on young, realistic energy for the future; this is really Margiela for the year 2015.'