The announcement of H&M‘s latest collaboration with Rabanne is nothing short of a revelation. Imagine the innovation and audacity of the French house’s metallic masterpieces, now accessible, without compromising the quintessence of luxury. This partnership, a majestic blend of Rabanne’s iconic designs and H&M’s global accessibility, offers a collection that is not just timely but timeless.
On the magical night of Paris Fashion Week, an air of anticipation and mystery swirled. Among the illustrious guests, including Jared Leto, Damson Idris, Irina Shayk, Elle Fanning and Cher, was a palpable excitement – the unveiling of a collaboration that is bound to redefine fashion narratives. With the official launch slated for November 9th, 2023, the ensemble of menswear and womenswear is adorned with Rabanne’s signature metallic mesh, a testament to the enduring legacy of the late, great Paco Rabanne.
Julien Dossena, the mastermind who breathed a vibrant pulse into Rabanne since 2013, shared his reflections on the collaboration. “As a designer, I’ve always been interested in exploring hedonism and empowerment. I was very enthusiastic to work with H&M on a collection that will introduce Rabanne’s avant-garde energy to a wider audience in a democratic way,” Dossena expressed.
The collection harbors an intimate secret – it is the first dalliance of H&M with metal mesh, the material that is synonymous with Rabanne’s revolutionary approach to fashion. It harks back to the epoch when Paco Rabanne’s “12 Unwearable Dresses” in 1966 defied conventions, marrying rebellion with elegance. Ann-Sofie Johansson of H&M marveled at the transformation of Rabanne under Dossena’s adept hands, affirming the creative’s ability to render the iconic brand relevant to today’s discerning clientele.
With prices ranging from a modest 39.99 euros to an opulent 599 euros, the collaboration doesn’t just bring Rabanne’s iconic designs to the sartorial landscape; it invites a demography that values a blend of affordability, quality, and cutting-edge style. This majestic ensemble of 41 clothing items and 25 accessories for women, 21 pieces with 11 accessories for men, and 31 items for the home, is poised to create a paradigm shift, blending the traditional and contemporary, the opulent and accessible, the classic and the avant-garde.
H&M’s partnership with Rabanne is not the first major team-up of the year for the retail giant; it follows hot on the heels of a successful capsule collection with Mugler released in May. Julien Dossena isn’t new to collaborations either, having recently graced the world with his talent as a guest couturier at Jean Paul Gaultier in July. Moreover, Dossena played a pivotal role in the unveiling of a new makeup line as part of Rabanne’s ongoing rebranding efforts. Under his stewardship, the brand is on the cusp of surpassing the significant milestone of 1 billion euros in revenue.
Since Dossena joined in 2013, Rabanne has undergone a transformative journey. His innovative vision and creative prowess have elevated the brand’s fashion status, bringing a clear and compelling aesthetic to the forefront. Dossena has not only refined Rabanne’s distinctive style codes but also expanded its reach with celebrities by introducing a range of eveningwear.
H&M, known for pioneering the fusion of high-end designers with fast fashion through its iconic 2004 collection by Karl Lagerfeld, boasts a history of collaborations with renowned fashion houses such as Stella McCartney, Moschino, Maison Margiela, Balmain, Isabel Marant, Comme des Garçons, Lanvin, Versace, and Giambattista Valli. Many of these unique collections were an instant hit, flying off the shelves and sometimes causing a frenzy in H&M’s flagship stores.
The retailer’s pace of unveiling such collaborative lines experienced a brief slowdown following the launch of a collection with Simone Rocha in 2021. However, as the battle for dominance in the fast-fashion industry intensifies, H&M has reinvigorated its strategy, once again actively seeking and showcasing collaborations with esteemed designers to captivate the global market.
Johansson’s confidence resonates with the anticipation that is brewing among fashion aficionados. The late founder Paco Rabanne may have left us, but his legacy is a living, breathing entity, now weaving its magic in alliance with H&M.