Sarah O’Shea looks at ways to work the sports-luxe Alexander Wang x H&M collection into your daily wardrobe
Upon launching his sixty one piece collection with H&M on November 6th 2014, Alexander Wang has become the youngest fashion designer to collaborate with global fashion headliner store.
Wang’s sports-luxe collection marks a decade of well acclaimed designers collaborating with fashion giant H&M, yet his fashion line for the chain has been touted as one of the most fashion-forward collaborations that the high-street has seen in a very long time.
Striking the balance between exclusivity and affordability, the thought process behind this collaboration has greatly proved itself as a cornerstone in affordable fashion. The collection especially reaches out to people who may not necessarily be able to afford designer wear on a normal basis. Wang x H&M offers the designers sports-luxe aesthetic at a fraction of his normal designer clothes price. With over twelve months of behind-the-scenes travails of creating the extensive unisex collection, Wang showcases his designer aesthetic to a much wider audience, allowing more and more people to enjoy the luxury of the Alexander Wang lifestyle.
Previously in the media Wang has stated “I am honoured to be apart of H&M’s designer collaborations. The work with their team is an exciting, fun process”. Wang also stated ‘’They are very open to pushing boundaries and to set a platform for creativity. This will be a great way for a wider audience to experience elements of the Alexander Wang brand and lifestyle.”
H&M’s creative director Margarete Van Den Bosch, who has previously collaborated with Karl Lagerfeld and Maison Martin Margiella among many others, is reported as naming Wang as one of the key leaders in the fashion world. She said “Alexander Wang is one of the most important voices in fashion today. He understands exactly what people want to wear and does it with an energy and passion that’s infectious. It feels incredible to be collaborating with him this year.”
Wang’s official Instagram page, featured a basketball scoreboard with a digital countdown to the Alexander Wang x H&M launch, having previously announced the collaboration at Coachella festival during the summer.
Along with playing the role of creative director at Balenciaga, Wang’s creations continue to exude his love for unisex, monochromatic tailored pieces. Each item of this collection can be mixed and matched effortlessly with everyother piece in the highly-versatile collection. Blacks and greys act as the basis of the colour palette used for this collection, along with pops of neon yellow and blue, breaking up the monotone aesthetic of the collection. Unexpected silhouettes and cutouts in the form of scuba and mesh material, with the Wang brand emblazoned across each piece, the sporting vibe of this collection pushes boundaries in anything the H&M customer has ever seen before.
For the first Wang look, Aoife models the wrap-around sports bra. The sporty, yet fashion-forward appeal of this bra proves it can be stylish worn as outwear when toughened up with a simple monochromatic jacket like this one from Topshop. Resting loosely on the shoulders, Aoife’s look is again toughened with this black pair of River Island high-waisted stone wash mom jeans to keep in tone with the boyish feel of the collection. A simple pair of black Chelsea boots along with this vintage chained box-clutch streamlines the androgynous, yet sporty affirmation of this off-duty look.
The second look features Aoife modelling the gradient striped black and grey bodycon dress in which the dress itself acts as the statement piece to wear. The ‘AW’ embossing across the chest and shoulder brings about the structured connotations of Wang’s vision in effectively showcasing his designer brand through this collaborative high-street collection.
The sporting bra appeal is definitely at the forefront of the casual theme throughout this collection as we see Leyla model the Wang-emblazoned crop top which doubles up as both gym performance wear. Black leather shorts, along with black opaque tights and mid-heeled boots keep the look minimal, whilst the light-reflecting Wang crop sparks all the interest of the outfit. Statement jewellery like this chunky silver Topshop chain modernises the look and keeps the top-half the focal point of this clean-cut assemblage.
In the final look of this Alexander Wang x H&M shoot, Tiffany combines the Wang jacquard-knit bodycon skirt with the ‘AW’ printed bustier. Both items worn together showcase the main appeal of Wang’s high-street collaboration which is androgynous, sports-luxe and boundary-pushing. All of which have been used as buzzwords in describing the Wang x H&M vision.
Boundary-pushing is definitely displayed in the form of the ‘V’ shaped bustier, as seen on Tiffany. The selectively cut shape and neckline of what is easily the most daring piece of the entire collection, adds something a little more daring. Something a little out of both Wang’s and the H&M customer’s comfort zone. Wang creatively pushes the standard in both taste and design, which is effectively displayed in what was his worldwide sellout collaborative collection with world leader H&M.
Direction: Sarah O’Shea
Make-up: Cher McCrave
Models (from top to bottom): Aoife Duffy, Leyla Aydin, Tiffany Adusi
Photography: James Brady