Style & Then Some

Is Versace for H&M the highstreet’s most opinion-dividing designer collaboration yet?

‘Eww.’ That was my reaction when I saw the first ads from the Versace for H&M collection that premiered in New York last night with a high profile fashion show and performances from Prince and Nicki Minaj.

In the photo I saw, model Daphne Groeneveld was wearing a long-sleeved dress and leggings, both in garish black, turquoise and fuchsia oriental pattern. More ads were released and I still wasn’t impressed – the retina-searingly bright colours and brash head to toe prints are a far cry from the sleek, sexy dresses that Donatella has been sending down the Versace catwalk for the last few seasons. It looked from comments on the web that I wasn’t the only having a WTF moment, but then I was chatting to fellow blogger Simon at a recent H&M event and he was saying how much he liked the collaboration and that he thought everyone did too.  Clearly, Versace for H&M is dividing opinions.

Now that the entire collection (all 117 photos worth) has surfaced we can make a more thorough critical assessment. In actual fact I think my initial reaction was a bit harsh (but I stand by it where that fur vest is involved, you’ll see what I mean below). Not every piece makes me say eww; there are a few I really like – but a VERY limited handful. For arguments sake I’ve picked what I think are the 10 best and 10 worst pieces from the collection and put them in the gallery below, along with a selection of opinions gathered from a sample that includes tweeting celebs, trusted blogger friends and internet randomers alike. Bear in mind that the average dress costs £80 with some going up to as much as £150.

The case FOR Versace for H&M:

  • “I think that’s a great idea – rejuvenating the brand in this way” – fashion writer Katie_Jane_Rose.
  • “Its all about 80s/90s nostalgia! The old Gianni prints we know and love having a come back. Donatella’s a fashion force!” – fashion blogger The Very Simon G.
  • “Saw some of the Versace for H&M stuff today. Amazing!!! Love love everything! Fab colors and patterns” – actress Emma Roberts tweeted.
  •  “At first, I was really negative about it because Donatella said she would never do it a few years ago, so obviously she’s after the old money now…I actually quite like the collection- it is VERY Versace and definitely has its signature all over it. Which is good, as it doesn’t feel completely watered down like past collections for H&M.” – Style & Then Some’s own Helen Coakley.
  • “The glossy look book was released this morning, showing the designer-meets-high street collection in all it’s leather-clad, gold-studded, pattern-clashing glory. And we LOVE it.” – the MyDaily team.
  • “Some of the studded shift dresses, the less-crazy printed pants, cut-out plain coloured frocks, and even some of the accessories are actually pretty darn cool.” – blog Drop Dead Gorgeous Daily.

The case AGAINST Versace for H&M:

  •  “I am hugely disappointed by the men’s. Who is really going to buy the pink suit? The other products for men are equally as loud, with wild screaming patterns or street gang type clothes. Disappointing!” – fashion blogger JaimeLondonBoy.
  • “Some of it is genuinely cool, but it’s just RIDICULOUSLY over priced, as it’s still H&M” – fashion blogger Abimarvel.
  • “Possibly the worst idea on the planet, ever. Who’s idea was it to combine H&M’s cheap materials, and obsession with leopard print, with Versace’s tacky silhouettes? All for a…oh wait it’s not even that cheap.” – fashion blog EyeSpyFashion.
  • “Half of this collection is as bat-shit crazy, and unwearable as I expected (what a shame it’s out in November, there are so many great Halloween costumes here).” – blog Drop Dead Gorgeous Daily.
  • “This collab is barf worthy. One of the worst H&M/designer collabs yet IMO. Never was a big Versace fan and this is exactly why. Absolutely fucking hideous.” Comment on StyleForum. OUCH!

Which side are you on? Will you be queuing up eagerly when the Versace for H&M collection is released on 17 November or will you be giving it a miss?

Visit the collection’s UK microsite.

The best (first ten photos) and worst (last ten photos) of Versace for H&M:


Photos: courtesy H&M via Cut blog


3 comments on “Is Versace for H&M the highstreet’s most opinion-dividing designer collaboration yet?

  1. Pingback: Is the second Versace for H&M collection as bad as the first? | Style and Then Some

  2. Pingback: Not So ‘Forever’ 21? | US Giant to downsize store | Style and Then Some

  3. Pingback: Maison Martin Margiela for the Mainstream? The new H&M Collaborative Effort | Style and Then Some

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This entry was posted on November 9, 2011 by in Style and tagged , , , , .
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