Five Looks You Won’t Be Seeing in the Martin Margiela for H&M Collection
With so much mystique surrounding its “designer,” Maison Martin Margiela was the last label we expected to team with mass retailer H&M. But H&M is nothing if not surprising. After exiting his label in 2009, nobody is sure what Martin Margiela — the man — is up to, but we all know that the team behind Maison Martin Margiela — the brand — is still sending avant garde looks and boundary-pushing shapes down the runways when they show during Paris Fashion Week. H&M collaborations have been a way for big brands to experiment, so maybe this is a taste of a more palatable future for MMM? These fall collaborations have included plenty of innovation: Jimmy Choo launched ready to wear with their H&M collection and British wunderkind Matthew Williamson tested his menswear chops with his release.
The details surrounding the Margiela H&M collaboration are trickling in slowly and nobody knows exactly what the collection will contain (for now). All we do know for certain is that it will hit stores November 15th. Until the big reveal, we’ve gathered together some iconic Margiela looks that showcase his signature style, but probably won’t make it to the masses.
One of Maison Martin Margiela’s signatures is to completely obscure models’ faces. Whether with hair, masks, sunglasses or elaborate headpieces, the catwalk models have often remained just as anonymous as the designer himself. This look, from Spring 2009, features a full bodysuit (another house signature) crisscrossed with glittering bands. Practicality has never exactly been an issue with looks from Margiela. Notice how the model’s arm is actually tethered to her body. We don’t expect replicas of this statement-making piece to be the crown jewel of the H&M collaboration.
What could be inspired by this look? We think a glittering blue belt would be perfect for holiday parties. Accessories always sell out faster than the apparel in these collabs and we’d be more than happy to have a tamed-down version in our own closet.
While the model isn’t completely anonymous, the lighting and staging of Margiela’s Fall 2009 show left some scratching their heads. The design team used spotlights to highlight certain aspects of each look, including this cotton candy- like pouf of a bolero. Other models walked backwards, showing bare backs framed by silver metal fixtures.
What could be inspired by this look? Shearling — a popular look every fall and winter — could be made into a more realistic shape and still have some of the same feel as this one-of-a-kind piece.
Do we even need to explain this? A fox-fur hat (connected to the hands, no less) that’s so big it practically swallows up the model wearing it can’t possibly be something that would work in the real world, much less at a fast fashion retailer like H&M. Unless, that is, they suddenly start zeroing in on that certain group of bloggers vying for attention outside just about every fashion show. Everything else about the ensemble could work at H&M or any other retailer.
What could be inspired by this look? Shrink down the hat and it would be a must-have piece. Shoppers love snatching up an item that’s recognizable and there’s nothing more eye-catching than a fur hanging down half your body.
Yes, there’s no denying that shoulders have been having their time in the spotlight. From Balmain’s squared-off look to Donna Karan’s slinky cold-shoulder dresses, designers have embraced shoulders with open arms. Too bad the model sporting this Margiela dress can’t embrace anything with her stiff dress on. With its exaggerated silhouette the almost comical addition of sunglasses, this dress has little going for it in fit, flattery or function. Its saving grace is the hot hue. And we love a deep fuchsia.
What could be inspired by this look? Cowl-neck blouses and dresses are often on the racks at H&M, as its an easy, flattering look to wear. As long as they ditch the hard shoulders, this look could be a best seller.
In one of the more recent collections, models walked down the runway clutching their gowns to their bodies. It wasn’t for show, the dresses (this was the first look out on the catwalk) were designed to look like sheets thrown haphazardly around them after they, ahem, had a romp in the hay. It was a surprisingly sexy show from the design team at Maison Martin Margiela, but when critics distilled the looks, they found house trademarks like deconstruction and exaggerated volumes to reveal a classic Margiela look.
What could be inspired by this look? Put a strap on it. If this was made into a dress that people could actually wear, we’re positive that it would be one of the most covetable pieces in the collaboration.