By Emily Williams
Starting today, the highly anticipated Balmain collection for H&M will be available in stores and online. The men’s and women’s line, whose ad campaigns star top models like Kendall Jenner and Gigi Hadid, featuring bold jewel tones, loads of sequins, embroidery and plunging necklines reminiscent of looks from the ‘80s and early ‘90s.
A select number of H&M stores in cities like New York, Chicago, San Francisco and New Orleans will be opening at 8 a.m. Employees will be passing out colored wristbands to the first 420 shoppers at each location in order to maintain the crowds. Groups of 30 will be admitted to the store to shop for 15 minutes.
Purchases in the stores will be limited to two styles per customer. The line will also be available for purchase online starting at 8 a.m. EST, but online shoppers will be limited to only one style per person.
The collaboration was first announced back in May on the red carpet for the Billboard Music Awards. Designer Olivier Rousteing, flanked by Kendall Jenner and Jourdan Dunn who were wearing looks from the H&M collection, set the fashion world abuzz with the news of the new line.
Last month, Chicago blogger Kathryn Swartz Rees gained temporary access to images of almost the entire Balmain for H&M collection, and posted all of the images to her Instagram account. Instagram has since removed her account but not before the images found their way all over the web.
However, if the buzz surrounding the campaign, known on social media as #BALMAINATION, is indicative of the collection’s success, the leak hasn’t hurt the brand at all and maybe even helped generate more attention for Thursday’s launch. Images of the entire collection are now open and available to the public.
Some of the highlights of the line include heavily embroidered dresses, the most impressive of which is a $649 hand-beaded minidress worn by Gigi Hadid in the ad campaign. Although prices like these are steep for the average H&M shopper where shoppers can usually find clearance items as cheap as $5, the dresses would be considered a steal for anyone familiar with the Balmain brand.
The embellished blazer worn by Kendall Jennera at the Billbaord Music Awards also turned heads and will be sold for $549.The collection also includes jewelry in chunky blacks and golds, $50 gold earbuds and jewel-toned clutches and handbags.The line’s women’s shoes feature thigh-high suede black boots, heels with rope detailing and beaded booties.
For someone who wants in on the collaboration but doesn’t have several hundred dolllars to drop on a piece, Balmain France tees will be sold for $34.55. Supplies for the shirt are expected to go quickly.
For those anxiously awaiting Thursday’s launch, a futuristic music video featuring the brand’s top models and looks is available on H&M’s website.