Fashion lovers worldwide know and love the Autumn/Winter season for its endless possibilities. Darker hues can often elongate a silhouette in a flattering sense, or add a bit of mystery to your overall look. And of course, we can’t forget about layering: a delicate art that allows you to tap into your inner stylist and create the perfect self-curated look to achieve ultimate chic.
As temperatures drop ever so slightly to usher in Kuwait’s surprisingly icy weather and shorter days lingering from November till February, the release of H&M Studio’s AW17 collection is spot on to help us achieve all of our cozy weather style goals! What better than knowing that fashionable options are readily available, ready to wear and crafted for your individuality in so many locations around Kuwait?
And what’s most exciting about this year’s collection is the mood board influence of all things we love about fall for both the men’s and women’s lines: New York City and the urban hustle and bustle for the ladies, and the rustic, earthiness of the woods for the gentlemen. “Creating a clash between traditional menswear and the athleticism of mountaineering emphasizes the notion of quality as the new accent in fashion. So there’s not only the contrast in materials, but special attention is also paid to balancing new, modern silhouettes with classics,” says Andreas Löwenstam, H&M’s Menswear Head of Design, when pressed about opinions towards the AW17 Men’s line. Either way, thoughts of pumpkin spice lattes, pumpkin patches, powerwalking and power lunches and tapping maple syrup from a tree translated into fashion makes us giddy to our very core.
H&M head of design and creative director Pernilla Wohlfahrt agrees with our excitement, which is why when we asked her for her two cents on this year’s stellar collection, she excitedly obliged. “This collection is all about tailoring, enhancing the female silhouette. While there are ultra-feminine details, we’ve combined them with street or punk influences for a hard-edged yet sophisticated result,” she says of the women’s collection. Her other thoughts? Let’s just say we’re excited to rock the urban rustic look on Kuwait’s stylish streets this winter.
What makes the H&M Studio AW17 Men’s and Women’s collections different? How are they similar?
The H&M Studio AW17 collections have completely different inspirations. While the womenswear collection is all about the vibrancy and innovativeness of New York City, the menswear is inspired by mountaineering; but they share an emphasis on tailoring and contrasting the traditional with the new, plus a refined color palette that relies on black and navy with pops of white and bright colors.
What is it about the fast-paced NYC vibe that exudes Autumn/Winter to you?
We were very much inspired by the whirlwind energy and creativity of New York City, which anyone can feel just by walking down the street. We were in constant awe of the architecture, the street style, the graffiti art all around town and, of course, the people. And in some ways, Autumn/Winter feels more like the season where newness happens and time speeds up – after a summer holiday, autumn kicks in and then it’s already the turn of the new year – so all together, the proverbial “Autumn in New York” was the ideal reference for us.
What are the key trends that make up the H&M Studio AW17 collection?
For AW 2017, it’s about urban sophistication; blending graffiti prints with menswear checks, for example, or, the merging of different technical and traditional fabrics in a garment to express a fearless attitude. We were trying to capture New York City’s vibrancy, strength and universal style, and apply that to a modern wardrobe.
Tailoring is also key, but for a woman’s silhouette. This applies not only to trouser suits, but also dresses, shirting, knits and more. There’s a neatness to all the pieces, plus ultra-feminine details to balance it out, along with street or punk references to add in the mix. The result is hard-edged yet sophisticated, as well.
How do the fabrics in this collection work to accommodate the Middle Eastern Autumn/Winter temperatures?
The fabrics in this collection work to accommodate the climate in the Middle East during Autumn and Winter by being natural and breathable, as in the case of wool, but there is also a lot of satin and chiffon, which are light and airy and can be easily layered underneath other fabrics if the temperatures do drop. Stretch twill is also a versatile fabric that works in many different climates.
What are your personal favorite pieces from this collection?
It’s always hard to choose, but I love the oversized hooded parka-poncho hybrid in the checked print and faux fur trim. It’s so tough yet cozy and you can literally throw it over anything and still look cool. The dresses are also important pieces. They follow the curves of the female body, but also might have a graffiti print or strong, structural elements. Nothing is too precious, which I think comes with the punk attitude we were channeling.