Yea or Nay: H&M’s Conscious Exclusive Collection

Posted on March 20, 2013

Okay, this has a more complicated elevator pitch than the average H&M collection, so we’re turning it over to Mr. Press Release momentarily to explain.

“Hollywood glamour comes to H&M this spring with Conscious Exclusive – a partywear collection made from more sustainable materials. The collection features clothing and accessories for both men and women, and is part of H&M’s Conscious work to offer more sustainable fashion. Materials used in the collection include organic cotton, recycled polyester, recycled polyamide and TENCEL. The Conscious Exclusive collection will be available in around 140 stores worldwide as well as online from April 4, 2013.”

Got that? “Hollywood” and “sustainable.”

There’s definitely more of a red carpet vibe to this collection of looks, and you can see several RC mini-trends on display, like lace, asymmetrical hems, peplums, and at least one big, poofy fantasy gown.



It seems odd to us to release a Hollywood-themed collection in pictures staged like a Vogue editorial, though. We can’t speak to the quality of the clothes, so Bitter Kittens are encouraged to go, try them on, and report back. There are a couple of fairly stylish looks here, if they’re on the right girl and styled correctly.

And what are the Kittens’ first impressions?


H&M’s Hollywood-Themed “Conscious Exclusive” Collection:



[Photo Credit: H&M]

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  • MK03

    NAY. There’s a whole lotta blerg on display here.

    • Vlasta Bubinka

      Now a nursery rhyme for the pant suits:

      Lady pant lady pant, fly away home.
      You tunic top looks ratty and your bustier train’s in the bowl.

      • BarniClaw

        I was just going to hit the “up” arrow on this comment, but I laughed out loud at your rhyme. Hence, an actual worded reply indicating my like-i-ness.

      • BigWhiteGrannyPanties

        OK Viasta, you need to somehow link with TLo to make a little book of these verses paired with the photos Please?

  • MsOlympia

    I like the white suit in the second picture. Overall, those are some sad & dreary colors.

  • there are a few interesting dresses, but the first one with the pom poms, no.

  • schadenfreudelicious

    having a difficult time getting past pompom/skin disease dress number one…..

    • With a bow to our dear Vlasta B, a haiku.
      Skin condition pink
      Shedding gobs of errant fluff
      Who will love you now?

      • Vlasta Bubinka

        For the grey and the pink dresses
        (open verse in the style of Baudellaire, including a line from Fleurs des Mal)

        The hearses file slowly in my mind
        As funereal daughters dance as widows
        Drawing ever closer to their own finality.

        Drab words hang over
        And a slickly pallor reaches out
        Through darkness profound.

        Never smiling at beauty
        Stiff frocks grip innocence
        Into silent stillness.

        • Please tell me that you work with words for a living. You have a gift. This is quite evocative and eerie in its mood.

          • Vlasta Bubinka

            I’m an historian working on my first book– my dissertation. I specialize in women’s history.

          • Well if your haiku and other verse is a fair sampling of your facility with language, you will no doubt dazzle your review professors.

          • SRQkitten

            I first discovered TLO when i was taking a mental break from dissertation research – did wonders for my mental health and humor. If your work here is any indication, you’ll be Ph.DONE before you know it!


          • BigWhiteGrannyPanties

            What a lovely and generous comment. I too did a dissertation but as I told Viasta, it was in the Time Before the Earth Cooled (and certainly before TLo!)

          • BigWhiteGrannyPanties

            I now have an Official Crush on you. On everyone in this thread. Well on the whole damn site. But Viasta, just to let you all know, my dissertation was completed when we all had 2400 baud dial up modems. There was no TLo respite. Dissertations are horrid. Advisers have the key and you must carp and obey until they let you leave. But it’s worth it. I told myself I was allowed to have ANYTHING I WANTED as long as I was writing the damn thing. So I got champagne and chocolate at my keyboard. And now I have to wear Big White Granny Panties as my punishment because I was never skinny again since. Best of luck to you!

        • Oh my, that is really very, very good!

        • rajf

          Ooooh, this is marvelous. Can you do one about the hair? the horrible hair?

          • Vlasta Bubinka

            I’ll do a 2’ku. and thank you all… I’m using my silly little poetry to work out a writer’s block.

            Sad Breck girl split endz
            Center part gives way to limp
            Hot oil says NOW.

            Blond. Droop. Fly away.
            Marcia Brady stole my rinse!
            Ingenue is sad.

          • BigWhiteGrannyPanties

            “Ingenue is sad” has now made me spit coffee on my screen.

          • nancymae

            Though I spit water all over my to do list after laughing out way too loud after reading your 2’ku and now the guy next to me at Starbucks thinks I need to cut back on my caffeine, I can only smile and say thank you Vlasta. This made my day! Do you have a tumblr compilation of your verse?? Just a thought

          • Carol Melichar

            I know –the hair! Hasn’t H7M heard of a hair brush?

    • Louise Bryan

      That was my reaction — There’s a fungus among us!!

      • schadenfreudelicious

        there has got to be an ointment for that….

  • MilaXX


    Most of this bores me just looking at theses pictures. I am slightly interested in the pink gown and the white asymmetrical pants suit, but I cannot imagine either of them looking good at H & M’s price point. The pink gown in particular would need to be carefully rendered in order to not look like nothing more than a pink sack.
    WTH is sticking out the sides of the next to the last dress?

    • Vlasta Bubinka

      That is organic cotton ass buttressing, for your secret hams.

    • kimmeister

      It looks like the model decided to clean the kitchen and then tucked the rag under her arm.

  • hughman

    I can’t even with these pics. It’s like a prom on the Titanic.

    • hughman

      Bwahaha! Seriously, with the “down” votes now? Sorry my Titanic joke offended you, Leo.

  • Vlasta Bubinka

    And now a roller disco chorus for the pink short dress (tune: Good Times!)
    This is so fluerchon!
    Leave your panties on!
    Put your widow hat on!
    Titty tape for cleavage yah!

    • I just adore you more and more with each poetic interlude.

      • Vlasta Bubinka

        Just for you and my other fans. For the mullet hem dresses:

        Dearth of ideas
        Multiple level hem- FRESH!

  • StrandedFashionista

    All they really are are bad rip-offs of Dior, Balenciaga, and Zac Posen. YAWN,

    • j_anson

      It’s not that I disagree, but, I mean, it’s an H&M collection, not the latest Prada runway show. What were you expecting?

      • StrandedFashionista

        I guess I don’t expect ‘innovation’ per-se from H&M, just clothing that isn’t so blatantly derivative.

  • NC_Meg

    I like most of it. The third outfit looks like wrinkled baggy PJs, though. I don’t understand it.

  • A lot of these clothes look like they would be awkward or difficult to wear, and under the best of circumstances, their construction quality, and textile quality leave much to be desired. Also, almost none of this reads “Hollywood”. And the mostly bland colorations are uninspiring.

  • Imasewsure

    I’m not the H&M demo but I say YEAH to the concept at least. I like the white suit and the longer dresses but they don’t seem all that special. Still it’s a yeah overall…. now if only Prius would make a limo……

  • My only real impression was I enjoyed the use of a healthy looking model. One in need of a hair brush, but healthy none the less. The clothes, I assume, could be found just about anywhere.

  • What’s sustainable isn’t updating your wardrobe every season, but that’s not keeping H&M in business, I guess.

  • Louise Bryan

    The collection gets a nay from me and my teen-age daughter. She stuck her tongue out at the last gown.

  • PastryGoddess

    Jumpsuits must die!

  • Sara Rogovin

    I don’t hate these.

  • charlotte

    The first dress looks fungal. Are they taking “organic” too seriously? Everything else is just meh.
    That’s a NAY.

  • PrunellaV

    I’d love this stuff if I were in my 20s. Sexy, dramatic, with a dash of romance and decent price points.

  • Frank_821

    Is this part of the collectionj that is connected to what Helen hunt wore to the oscars? the one people blasted her for-for looking so cheap?

  • j_anson

    Conscious Exclusive is a horrible name. Moreover, when I think Hollywood, I think “glamour” and none of these feel particularly glamorous to me (though some of them are chic enough.

    YEA to the clothes themselves (which aren’t bad for H&M-level style) but NAY to the stupid advertising campaign.

  • alyce1213

    If anyone hasn’t worn or sewn anything in Tencel, try it.

    I love it when it’s fabricated well. It hangs beautifully and has a great hand.

  • H & M = Hot and Mess. All for $19.99

  • crash1212

    Eh. Not feeling any of them. Didn’t Helen Hunt wear something from this line to the Oscars…but H&M didn’t put it in the collection? Didn’t like that one either.

    • MilaXX

      Yes and her oh so proud proclamation at the awards show was down right embarrassing.

  • Corsetmaker

    I’m not entirely convinced their PR department has actually been speaking to the design department. They’re fine, they’re pretty nice for cheap fast fashion. If I fitted H&M’s sizes I’d consider a couple of them. But in reality the fabrics will be cheap and you’ll still have to fight through the mayhem that is an actual H&M store.

  • Jennifer Broom

    That might be the black jumpsuit I’ve been looking for.

  • Nay. Plus it looks like an outtake from “Pina.”

  • Rachael

    I don’t hate the 2nd to last dress, but I’m pretty sure I wore something similar to the white oversized jacket and pants the last time I was in the hospital

  • Like.

  • Sounds like a load of greenwashing to me.

  • libraangel

    o.k. most but kinda blah. First one looks like walked through a field of “organic” flowers and they stuck. Bell-bottom/palazzo pants – it’s called ‘hemming’!

  • IMNAngryLiberal

    I think you need to add a MEAH option to the YEA or NAY.

  • Zippypie

    NAY. It’s boring. We’ve seen it all before the last couple of seasons and it’s behind the times. And get rid of the mullet dress already!

  • I love the idea of what they’re doing, but I find these just too darn sad. And am I the only one who is totally over peplums?

  • Trisha26

    NAY. It’s all very heroin-chic – at least with this model (I thought that was out years ago?) – and looks fairly cheap overall. I only really like the first long blush gown and the white kimono/pants look (if that was in black and the pants had half the volume I would be wearing it now.)

    • huh, I thought the model was fantastic. She reminds me of someone but I can’t figure it out.

  • I don’t get it…where are normal people wearing these dresses? Mostly they look like something you would wear to a wedding of a bride you hate.

    • BigWhiteGrannyPanties

      OMG yes. And haven’t we all been there? What DO you wear to the wedding of a bride you hate?

      • barbarienne

        Are you kidding? Something that makes you look AMAZING, and if you really, really hate her, it should be white.

        (Yeah, I read too many of the wrong books.)

  • BrooklynBomber

    First impression: some great looks. Second thought: probably not so great up close & personal.

  • Pterodactyl111


  • LaSylphide

    Not crazy about the Trouble With Tribbles dress, but the rest aren’t too bad, if not very practical.

  • another_laura

    Gotta go with Nay. Buy more stuff! Be Sustainable! Does not compute.

  • Carly Warnock

    Surprisingly cute and possibly very wearable.

  • formerlyAnon

    For H&M? Yea. I personally think there’s two dresses of the lot that are probably dubiously worth whatever they’re charging and while I the like pants I suspect one has to be rather long-legged for those ensembles to work.

    But with H&M it’s always about where one’s willingness and ability to spend intersect with one’s expectations of the quality of the clothes and one’s perception of their stylishness. Most H&M customers go in expecting [relatively speaking] “throwaway fashion,” they’re not worrying about wasting resources (except their own financial resources.) If these are significantly more expensive than regular H&M fare, the Conscious Exclusive Collection won’t last long.

  • I love H&M. I do. I have lots of fun pieces from there but…on a good day most of their fabrics are suspect. Very easily wrinkled; very easy for them to look cheap. Looks 2, 3 and 4 and especially the last one – they would be impossible – literally impossible – to keep uncrumpled for more than 3 minutes and that is if you could ever get them uncrumpled. So that is what I see when I look. Also, no color aside from the first dress and I think we can all agree it looks like she is growing some sort of fungi on herself.

  • Sarah Thomas

    Every time I see something from this collection I wonder if the clothes are sewn in any less sweatshop-y conditions than everything else H&M makes. But I probably know the answer.

  • StephanieLovesTLo

    Oh hell to the no.

  • Kenisha Hill Phillips

    In theory H&M has a plus line. Will any of these looks translate there?

    • Kenisha Hill Phillips

      Which is not to say that I like these, but I think it’s fair for plus shoppers to say no, as well.

    • formerlyAnon

      A plus line? really? Is it catalog only? I am not an H&M customer but go there periodically with others and I’ve never seen anything like a plus size! Unless a size 14, cut for a “slim” fit, is a plus size.

      • Kenisha Hill Phillips

        No, really. The website has sizes 14-24, but I think they run by pattern sizes, so their 24 is an 18 in most other places.

        According to a plus fashion blogger, the Manhattan flagship store has a section, but it’s a small corner in the back of the room. And the clothes were haphazardly folded.

        • BigWhiteGrannyPanties

          That’s because these stores still don’t get this basic concept: Often times middle aged women are larger. Like a size 16, or 18 or 20. Often times, middle aged women are farther along in their careers and HAVE A HELL OF A LOT MORE MONEY TO BURN ON CLOTHES THAN SOME SKINNY 20 YEAR OLD. This just kills me. Can you tell? 🙂

          • RedRaven617

            You said it perfectly. Unfortunately I live in the Palm Springs area, and there is one Macy’s here and that is it. I order a lot of clothing online. Hate it.

          • Kenisha Hill Phillips

            I didn’t think middle-aged was the target market.

            I guess I’m missing something.

          • BigWhiteGrannyPanties

            Really? I love the idea of some of these looks – except the rosettes – ugh. But that boxy flow-y pantsuit is nifty and I like some of those dresses, even the Helen Hunt one, if it were made nicely. And I’m over 50.

          • Kenisha Hill Phillips

            I guess I just lump them with the likes of Abercrombie and Fitch, which tend to market to a younger crowd.

            It doesn’t matter, though. If they make your size, and you like the clothes, then you should buy it.

  • Yawn. The last few collaborations have been really poor quality. I’m not interested in anything I see here. I’m curious about how long this mullet hemline trend is going to continue. NOT a fan!

  • Laylalola

    The uncombed/unkemp hair is out of place and distracting to the point i couldn’t focus on the clothing the first look-through.

  • plinkiedoodle


  • Regina Abola


  • Lace, asymmetrical hems and peplums have been real-world trends for a while now, so they don’t say “red carpet” to me. Some of these clothes are OK but the model’s poses are irritating me. Stand up straight, child.

  • NAY. Mainly because I see nothing I could wear without inducing a riotous laughter in public.

  • I like the shoes!?

  • YAY! I bought one of their Conscious Collection dresses last year and it was well made, thick material (unlike most high street shops these days) and will last (as long as I can fit back into it again!).- It was the Mark Katrantzou style printed dress. I would definitely head into H&M to at least try these on. It helps that I have 2 weddings and a reunion to go to in the next few months!

  • KayEmWhy

    Project Runway rejects.

  • Erica_Vuitton

    YAY! MUST HAVE those white pants with the ankle zips and those 3 strap shoes!! Finally we see Helen Hunt’s H&M Oscar dress. Glad she asked for blue instead of the mauve.

  • Indigo54

    This is not bad…for H&M.

  • marilyn

    Barely Yay. The first look is horrid. All of thos awful pom-poms on a polyester dress. But, the rest of the collection is fine. It looks a little dated, in a Rachel Zoe way-you know-retro 1970’s, originla Charlies Angels, etc.

  • EEKstl

    Yea. There are some nice looks here, especially considering it’s H&M.

  • The Flying Nuggets

    Any idea about the prices? Even estimations?

  • barbarienne

    An unenthusiastic “yea.” There’s nothing special here, but nothing offensive, either. I wouldn’t bat an eyelash either way if I saw someone wearing these. Perhaps I am jaded by being a regular TLo reader. H&M is so aiming for the middle of the road.

  • Some of these items aren’t so bad, but the ones I don’t like, I *REALLY* don’t like. And nothing is terribly original (wait, I can’t believe that I just said that about H&M). I give the collection a “yea” (with reservations). I kinda want the white pantsuit in the second picture, minus the vest.

  • sweetlilvoice

    Ugh! I’ll pass. H&M clothes are pretty disposable so it’s nice they take that into consideration with their fabric choices.

  • ccm800

    oooo that poor girls gigantic feet.

  • padma sallah

    NAY. I am not getting any Hollywood “feels” from this collection. What I am getting though is a distinct whiff of droopy blahness.

  • the model looks like that cute girl on house of lies. oh, the clothes? like the ecru lace number, but overall doesn’t make much of a statement. so often i’ll see a celeb and think, wow that dress looks cheap and or ill made and then notice the “wearing H&M” notation. of course, i say to myself.