LOS ANGELES — Oh, the irony of Viktor & Rolf and Swedish fast-fashion retailer H&M showing Hollywood how to stage an opulent celebrity wedding.
On their third trip to Los Angeles, the Amsterdam-based design duo piled on the clichés at last Friday's wedding-themed soirée at a private Bel-Air mansion to launch some 70 pieces for men and women that they created for the one-time collection Viktor & Rolf [heart] H&M.
Following a bachelor party organized by Greybull Press co-publisher Lisa Eisner at a Mexican wrestling bout that also featured burlesque dancers, Viktor Horsting and Rolf Snoeren greeted about 600 guests under a big white tent housing crystal chandeliers, a disco ball, a 10-piece chamber orchestra that played Madonna's "Like a Virgin," a catwalk for a runway show and a 12-foot-high wedding cake.
"The whole collection is [about] a wedding," said Snoeren at the Chateau Marmont before the party, the only one being thrown to fete the collaboration, which will hit stores Nov. 9. "We were thinking of a celebrity wedding because they don't last very long. That's why we thought of L.A."
Among the well-wishers who traveled from across town, New York, London and Canada for the party were Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, Owen Wilson, Kanye West, Jessica Paster, Magda Berliner, Liz Goldwyn, WeAretheSuperlativeConspiracy's, Greger Hagelin, Chip and Pepper Foster, and White Trash Charms' Brooke Dulien.
"I like the celebrity here in L.A.," said H&M head designer Margareta van den Bosch, noting the Stockholm-based company hasn't decided yet on the next designer in the series, which kicked off with Karl Lagerfeld and followed with Stella McCartney.
While Carmen Electra and Christina Milian respectively donned a black peacoat with heart-shaped buttons and an ivory silk crepe blouse from the collection, Chloë Sevigny, who was featured in H&M's ad campaign in 2000 when it opened its first shop in the U.S., paired Proenza Schouler's teal-striped pouf miniskirt with a black cardigan from Los Angeles' Trasteverine. Coveting the short khaki trenchcoat on the runway, Sevigny said that "it was all cute."
It was also a zippy process. Horsting said that after he and Snoeren received a call from H&M in March, they spent two weeks concocting everything that a couple would need for a wedding and honeymoon, including black plastic square-shaped glasses resembling the designers' signature spectacles, pink silk bras, dark skinny jeans, suede platform pumps, black tuxedos with heart-shaped lace cutouts and a silk wedding dress, which, at $349, is the most expensive item.Choosing white as the color for the plush carpeting, waiters' tuxedos and gloves, roses and a Rolls-Royce, Horsting and Snoeren hosted the party to end their 10-day tour of Chicago, San Francisco, Santa Barbara and Los Angeles. "We're very happy," Horsting said after the cake cutting and bouquet toss.
As for reports that there might be a corporate marriage between Diesel and Viktor & Rolf, the Dutchmen dismissed them as rumors. But Horsting and Snoeren, who are 37 and 36 years old, respectively, welcomed the exposure their conceptual label would gain from partnering with H&M. "We can address a bigger and new audience by doing this collection," Snoeren said.
Still, they acknowledged fashion is also about exclusivity. The wedding dress, which is the first that H&M has ever made in its 59-year-history, is available only in sizes 6 and 8 and limited to 1,000 units.
"It would be really fun if people sent us [wedding] pictures," Snoeren said.