The day fashionistas (and fashionistos) have been waiting for finally arrives on Saturday, November 17, when H&M at The Domain opens its large double-doors to a salivating crowd.
24,000 square feet and multilevel, Austin's H&M is a full concept store, offering collections for ladies, men, young ladies, young men and children, as well with separate "store within store" sections for accessories, lingerie and maternity.
"One of the keys to H&M’s success worldwide is that most of our collections are the same in every store," H&M rep Nicole Christie tells CultureMap of the merchandise that will be carried in at The Domain location. The looks you see in a New York City store or abroad, you will also see deep in the heart of Texas.
Those keeping a close watch on H&M's arrival may have noticed the global marketing concept the Swedish retailer has employed to drum up even more interest (if that were even possible) around its latest high-profile collaboration with Belgian designer Maison Martin Margiela deemed "The Silent Manifesto," representative of the low profile the designer purposely kept his entire career.
In nine countries around the world, including the U.S., 25 stoic "fashion soldiers" wearing black and white manufacturing uniforms stoically marched through high-traffic areas holding signs signaling the Maison Martin Margiela for H&M's November 15 arrival. And, lucky for Austin, Christie says, "We are proud to announce that H&M at The Domain will be one of the 40 stores in the United States to carry our newest designer collaboration collection."
Deeply influenced by Japanese avantgardists in the '80s (think Comme des Garçons), Martin Margiela became known for eschewing luxurious high-fashion and deconstructing typical design. The H&M collection "consists of 're-editions' from the archives of the fashion house’s rich history spanning 24 years."
No highly anticipated opening would be complete without a noteworthy kick-off party, for which none other than FADER Magazine has risen to the task. The magazine (which is all over Austin, as of late) will host a Friday night opening event at the store that's bound to turn into an all out dance party with Nick Catchdubs and Bird Peterson on the decks.
With brands like H&M (and also recently, Topshop) acknowledging the budget-conscious, fashion-forward market that exists within the capital city and making the decision to tap into it, the future of fashion in Austin becomes brighter by the day. Let's just not all buy the same thing, k?
To celebrate the opening, CultureMap is giving one lucky reader the chance to get to the front of the line on opening day, plus a $150 gift card to H&M. Pick your favorite H&M look in our Culture Poll to enter! Contest ends Friday, Nov. 16 at noon.