Monday, 10 October 2011

'Fabulous' H&M Conscious Collection

Last week I was teaching on a personal styling course and at the beginning of the week one of the students asked if I thought sustainable or environmental fashion was successful - it was something along those lines. I told them about the different lines, companies who have an ethical stance and of course reminded them about second hand buying, recycling etc. But the bottom line was in respect of styling I was not convinced by specific collections for the mass market.

I'm not an expert on this subject, although my old college LCF has the wonderful Centre for Sustainable Fashion. I am very much in favour of a raft of approaches to garment producing including sourcing of material, design, working conditions and practices but bottom line for any of these things to be ultimately successful the items have to be desirable. As consumers we buy things we desire and we are influenced by price too.

Thinking as a stylist without any preferences or emotional views (you know my I loathe designer/high st collaboration ones and celebrity ones even more!) I'm mightily impressed with H&M's Conscious Collection

It has been perfectly edited. All credit to stylist Robert Rydberg and the design team. I love the fact it has drawn upon Scandinavian heritage (I have Norwegian blood in there somewhere not Swedish so no bias!) and I love that it truly looks like a collection. Yes, the word conscious is a bit naff but otherwise we might have had an IKEA style word like Stolmen or Pax so I'll let it go.

I cannot testify to the quality of the products but it is H&M, it is very reasonable priced and from viewing online I have fallen in love with it. I will be buying the skirt and cardigan...

I feel there is something grown up about the two combined and nicely Scandinavian about the look it creates. However it is true that I am in love with all things Scandinavian since spending a summer reading only Scandinavian authors. Vintage Vixen sent me a Jo Nesbo one and I read all the Stieg Larsson Millennium trilogy as well, couldn't put any of them down.

But ultimately what H&M have done is drawn upon our desire to be more sustainable and our consciences regarding clothes production and given us something we can afford to buy. The items don't scream fashion and therefore they are items we can pick and choose to work in our wardrobes for a long time. I would splash the cash if I had it on quite a few pieces, I love the wool coat and overall H&M have raised the bar in a credible way.


  1. I adore H&M for kids clothes but I have always suspected that they couldn't be that cheap AND sustainable. You're right - if it wasn't attractive and desireable it would be pointless as no-one would buy it, and I like that this might be the beginning of a more sustainable high street.

    (I didn't know you hated High St/Designer collaborations, So Do I!)

  2. I think the flower prints are great! I am a little disappointed that there's still barely any colour apart from that though. I'm not sure if it's impossible to have sustainable red dye (i would have thought not) or if it's because people still associate sustainable with undyed. But a step in the right direction!

  3. I'm waiting for my delivery of the dress in the same print as your skirt, and the cream lace pencil skirt, I really hope they are as lovely as they look, and that the dress doesn't look too mumsie on me - will let you know x

  4. That skirt is particularly lovely! It's fantastic to hear of such massive chains going down the ethical route, not only by the production and sourcing but those classy designs could be wardrobe staples for years.
    There's something about Scandinavian writing and the description of the cold landscape that's darkly compelling.
    Fancy you having Norwegian blood, there's a Norwegian thriller I've just finished that'll be coming your way soon. x

  5. Love that skirt!!! I am deffo going to get one of those! And if it's ethical, so much the better!

    Al ix

  6. Mrs P - do tell how it looks & quality. Am tempted by lace skirt too xx

  7. Thank you for the review, the skirt and cardi look great. Will you post photos of you wearing the outfit?

  8. It's arrived and it is gorgeous, I really wish I had ordered the floral skirt too now. Only criticism is that as usual the sizing is out - the 10 is more like an eight and the 12 more like a 10 (not always the case with H&M sometimes the sizes are huge. There is no stretch in either item but I am keeping the 12s and staying off the cheese and chocolate. The fabric and cut are beautiful and the length is grown up (all those lovely Mad Men clothes which have been on the high street have been way to short for me, and I am only 5'6"). I went on line to order 14s to have altered but it looks to be pretty much sold out - may be worth looking in the stores. x

  9. Susan - yes I will.
    Mrs P oh fab am very excited now but by the sounds of it I might have lay off everything! I ordered the size 10 as you are right the size 12 were all gone. Only store location is the H&M concession in Selfridges & I've not got much chance to pop in there

  10. Alison - well I love the sustainability bit & the back story of Swedish folklore inspiring it! Btw do you know I can't access your blog don't know why xx

  11. The H&M dark floral printed items are my favourite. Nothing beats a great textile print!!

    xo ShoeTease


Thank you for commenting, much appreciated. Sorry about no longer offering anonymous comments but spamming had become a very annoying issue. xxx