Nov 23, 2010
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Fashionistas swarm H&M stores for Lanvin line

Nov 23, 2010

PARIS, Nov 22, 2010 (AFP) - Fashionistas swarmed H&M's Champs Elysees flagship store Tuesday, after queuing through the night to get their hands on a party dress from Lanvin's limited edition collection for the budget chain.

H&M, Lanvin
Foto: AFP

The line by Lanvin's Israeli designer Alber Elbaz went on sale in 200 H&M stores worldwide after a pre-launch Saturday in North America, the latest of a string of tie-ups between the Swedish retailer and top fashion designers.

"It's Lanvin -- that's reason enough to wait more than 10 hours, asleep on our feet," said Dasol Kang, from South Korea, one of the hundreds of customers who pressed through the doors of the Paris store when they opened at 8:00 am.

For the operation Elbaz designed cocktail dresses with rose-patterning or yellow frills and sharp-tailored party frock numbers, with a democratic price tag of 99 to 149 euros (149-199 dollars), as well as blouses for 19.90 euros.

Parisian architect Chloe Caron had her eye on a bare-shouldered black dress, priced at 150 euros.

"That I can afford -- on the other hand, I went into a Lanvin store a few days back and a dress costs 5,000 euros."

The world's third-largest fashion group, H&M first teamed up with a top fashion designer in 2004, in a tie-up with Karl Lagerfeld that lifted monthly sales by a quarter.

Since then it has hooked up with the likes of Stella McCartney, Viktor and Rolf, Comme des Garcons, Jimmy Choo and Sonia Rykiel -- on top of one-off lines with style icons Kylie Minogue or Madonna.

To avoid the chaotic scrums seen at previous designer launches, customers were handed coloured wristbands and each one allocated a 10-minute slot to browse and make their selection.

Purchases were also limited to one of each item, to stop enterprising customers from reselling the designer frocks at a mark-up on the Internet, as happened in the past.

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