High street shoppers are eagerly awaiting the release of the Versace for H&M collection. The highly anticipated collection will be up on sale on 17 November, but you can’t just rush into the store and empty the shelves. There are rules to this one. The fear of items appearing on eBay right after at exorbitantly high prices – which is what happened with the recent Missoni for Target collection – has persuaded H&M to come up with an elaborate list of rules. The idea is to keep away bulk buyers who might be supplying to ecommerce sites like eBay, as well as allow greater numbers of dedicated shoppers to enjoy a piece of the Versace for H&M pie.
How To Shop
So how does it work? If you are a shopper in London, prepare to wake up bright and early; better still, camp outside the store at night. By 7am, you will have to grab your place in the queue outside H&M. All this, to get a bracelet that will guarantee entry and access to the collection. The store will open at 9am. (In the US, stores will open at 8am instead.) So it would make sense to collect your bracelet, then grab a cup of coffee and breakfast – you will need strength to complete your 10-minute shopping expedition to the best of your abilities.
Yes, 10 minutes. That is the magic number at this shopping event. The bracelets provide a specific time for the buyer to go crazy in the stores. H&M will be providing 280 bracelets to the first 280 dedicated shoppers to make it to the queue. The bracelets come in 14 different colors, with 20 bracelets per color. My guess is that the early birds will get earlier time slots to go shopping in the H&M stores. After all, if you have been in queue for hours, you would not want to be left to choose among all the dregs. And 10 minutes is not a long time.
Another rule is that a single buyer can buy “a maximum of two pieces per product, ie not more than two sizes (shoes/garments) or pieces (accessories) per product per customer.” So there is a time limit and a quantity limit. (Is it me, or does this seem like some kind of a 10-minute version of “A Minute to Win It”?) Buying for friends and family is out of the picture.
The rules apply only to the women’s collection, however. The men have no such rules.
How is H&M planning to follow up on its hugely publicized collaboration with Versace? With Tom Ford, course. Nothing is certain as yet, but H&M has evinced interest in a tie-up with the Gucci designer. The high street brand’s creative advisor Margareta van den Bosch is reported to have said that Ford is “a very interesting name.”
H&M’s tryst with luxury fashion brands began in November 2004, when it produced a collection in collaboration with Chanel’s Karl Lagerfeld. Such collections sell out super-quick. The rush at the stores, in the absence of shopping rules, must be crazy. H&M’s shopping guidelines for the Versace collection is sure to reign in the madness. But for the buyers who get their pick of the best items, it will be a well-deserved victory.