You may have noticed that shops have started filling up with sequins. Sequins and bodycon. This can mean only one thing: it’s “party” season. While, in theory, that sounds like a fun season in which to be alive, I tend to find that, actually, the run-up to Christmas involves doing twice as much work in half the time, normally while nursing a hangover. Not to sound like Scrooge, because I, for one, love the festive period. But I definitely don’t have time to trawl the internet, let alone the actual, real-life shops, for something to wear to each and every social gathering from now until New Year’s Day. And it is for this reason that I’m particularly excited about Erdem’s collection for H&M.
My relationship with H&M’s designer collaborations is a mixed bag. The Sonia Rykiel collection left me elated, as I managed to get a jumper purely by chance that I still wear to this day. Lanvin left me frustrated, furiously refreshing the H&M homepage at 6am from my university halls. Versace wasn’t my thing, but I was so swept up in the whole event that I bought a man’s T-shirt and wore it with everything. In short, I’m a fan, but wouldn’t queue for hours in the rain just to get my hands on an £80 T-shirt.
I might, however, be tempted to do so for the latest instalment by Erdem, which stays true to the Canadian designer’s brand of gothic romance and femininity, as illustrated by the painterly floral prints and delicate lace fabrics running throughout the range. I’m a chronic overdresser – I’ve been known to wear my Sunday best to the pub – but even The Pool’s own jeans aficionado, Frankie Graddon, has been won over by this array of significantly dressed-up clothes. She's eyeing up the floral slip dress.
These are the sorts of pieces you’ll rely on for any occasion that requires your finery
While the hype surrounding H&M’s designer offerings often threatens to overshadow the clothes themselves, Erdem’s designs really are lovely. Best of all, there are frocks for one and all, given the range of shapes and styles on offer. Some have sleeves, some have frills, some are shift dresses, some have flared skirts. These are the sorts of pieces you’ll rely on for any occasion that requires your finery. As Erdem himself told press: “It’s about creating these pieces that I think someone would want to keep for ever, that have nothing to do with the idea of something being fast or instant, or wearing it and discarding it.”
Of course, it’s not all ballgowns – there’s a floral suit, a PJ-style two-piece, flouncy blouses, cosy knits, shoes, coats, bags, earrings, hair clips and even hoodies. There’s no doubt that most, if not all, of the key pieces will sell out fairly quickly but, even if you’re not lucky at first, it’s worth keeping your eye on stock levels of the item you’re after – a lot of returns are made after the initial frenzy has died down. I’d wish you luck, but it’s every woman for herself.