PARIS — Hennes & Mauritz AB on Thursday unveiled an eight-piece capsule collection by Ximon Lee, the first men’s wear designer to win the Swedish high street retailer’s annual Design Award.
In line with the growing trend of genderless clothing, Lee envisions the outfits being worn by both men and women. The line is to go on sale in select H&M stores and online on Oct. 22.
Known for extreme silhouettes, Lee used bonded fabrics to create items like a heavy twill denim jacket and a pair of wide shorts. He said translating his concept pieces, which incorporate materials like cardboard and plastic, into a commercial line with H&M was a long process.
“When I started working on the collection with them, they were very open to my opinions. I’m very particular in terms of the color, the material and even when it comes to snaps and zippers, I didn’t want to sacrifice any ideas that I began with. The production went really smoothly,” Lee told WWD.
The designer, who is based in New York City and graduated from The New School’s Parsons School of Design last year, plans to show his first full collection in a show or presentation format during men’s fashion week in Paris in January. He hopes it might connect him with a business partner as he seeks to build his fledgling label.
“I have never thought about my design as a business, but now there’s this kind of urge that I need to learn how to run it, rather than just sitting there and designing. It’s become something really different and unfamiliar for me, but I like this unfamiliarity, because it feels like you’re really growing day by day,” he said.
“Now one person can cover a lot more roles than before, because it’s tougher to run a business with bigger companies that are competing with you with much better resources,” he said, adding that the H&M prize money of 50,000 euros, or $56,250 at current exchange, had proved very helpful in financing his next collection.