| Fashion |

Kenzo x H&M Is Out Today; Here's What to Buy and What to Skip

Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Phoenix and help keep the future of New Times free.

Do you hear that clicking? It's the sound of fashion-obsessed shoppers across the country refreshing the H&M website in their browsers. Because today, November 3, is the day Kenzo releases its capsule collection for fast-fashion retailer H&M.

Known for graphic prints in a kaleidoscopic palette and bringing a "jungle" aesthetic to the high-end Parisian fashion scene, the label was founded by Japanese-born designer Kenzo Takada in 1970. Since then, it's expanded from womenswear to men's clothing and home decor, and its current creative directors are Humberto Leon and Carol Lim, also the founding team behind Opening Ceremony.

It's a maximalist approach to color  — orange goes with pink goes with blue goes with red — that truly defines this new collection, H&M's 23rd fashion collaboration since Karl Lagerfeld and his silvery ponytail presented a wallet-friendly line at the mall staple back in 2004. Since then, brands including Lanvin and Balmain have worked with everyone's favorite knockoff resource to deliver their distinct senses of style to the masses.

Phoenix-area shoppers won't find any of the items stocked on local shelves. But that doesn't mean they'll be deprived of $299 jumpers or $60 ruffled sweatshirts. Because this is America. And we have the internet, where the collection will be available for purchase on H&M's website starting at 8 a.m. Eastern, a.k.a. 5 a.m. Arizona time.

Now, the key to shopping any capsule collection — whether it's at Target, Gap, Walgreens, whatever — is to know your priorities. Do you want the trench coat with the iconic print, or will the faux-fur key chain satisfy your label lust?

Because you'll have to make some tough calls and because online shoppers are limited to purchasing just one of any item (meaning, no, you can't buy five of those $129.99 to $249.99 bags), we've narrowed down your options into two categories. There are things worth buying, and things you should scroll right past without thinking twice. Here are five of each.

What to Buy
1. Love it or hate it, athleisure isn't going anywhere. And it's having something of a ripple effect on loungewear in general. Which is why you're seeing robes, sweatpants, and things typically categorized as sleepwear on both runways and the world's stylish set. It also makes justifiable the purchase of $349 kimono. Think about it. You can wear this wherever you want. Layer it like a jacket. Slip it on instead of a cardigan. Also! It's reversible, so it's actually more like $175 per side. What a bargain.

2. Ric-rac sunglasses ($49) that look like something Roger Klotz would wear? You've gotta do it for the 'gram.

3. Time for some real talk: You're shopping a collection that, if worn out in the world from head to toe, would probably look very bad on you. Them's the breaks — and also why it's smartest to look for accessories you love and statement pieces you can adapt into different looks. But damnit if we don't just love literally everything in the collection with this Lisa Frank pink-and-green cheetah print. Buy it as a tiered skirt ($179) or an off-the-shoulder top ($69.99) or as a scarf ($59.99). Just don't wear them all at the same time. Deal?

4. Socks, as you might have heard, are having a bit of a moment. And we don't mean your bright-white Hanes. Patterned, textured, bonkers — these are the socks your street-style icons are sporting. Wear these vibrant and animal-printed pairs ($29.99 for a three-pack) with your pumps, loafers, or sneakers to make a statement with your ankles and on a budget.

5. On the opposite end of the price spectrum, you'll find an array of statement coats. We endorse these and are of the opinion that if Coat Queen Lorelai Gilmore might consider wearing a particular coat, then it is worthy of consideration by all Coat Peasants. They're splurges, yes, and they aren't exactly everyday outerwear. But who could fault you for swooning over a fluffy double-breasted coat in the color scheme of a Southwestern sunset ($249) or a furry hoodie ($99) that patches together this collection's standout zebra pattern in flaming red, baby pink, lavender, and an globe-mimicking deep blue and green? Probably some people, but not us. And certainly not Lor.

Those were the dos; read on for the don'ts.
What to Skip
1. Opera-length gloves are one thing. Opera-length gloves emblazoned with pink lettering ($79.99) declaring their makers are another. In this life, you need neither. 

2. While low-profile Chelsea boots are a must-have cold-weather staple for any closet, buying them from this particular line seems, well, silly. Nothing about them specifically reads Kenzo, which is basically the whole point of shopping from a high-fashion diffusion collection. Yeah, you could choose the ones with the Joker-green soles ($199). But, like, should you?

(No. The answer's no.)

3. Sadly, the childhood pajamas transforming into an evil and sentient Christmas tree topper trend has never really caught on. But it had such great buzz!

4. At this point in the game, you guys should know our feelings about flip-flops. They belong poolside, beachside, in a gym shower situation, and just about nowhere else. Certainly not in public. We appreciate these plush, zebra-print thongs ($99) and their complementing knee-high socks ($12.99) with a special big-toe notch for being a callback to Kenzo founder Kenzo Takada's Japanese roots. But when they are the only thing left in H&M's online emporium and you take the bait, just know we are somewhere laughing our asses off at you and your unfortunate life choices. 


Wishing to be a free-spirited, blowing in the wind, flouncy twee dress wearing ($299) type of woman does not make one a free-spirited, blowing in the wind, flouncy twee dress wearing type of woman. We are sorry to be the ones to share the bad news and wish you our deepest sympathies at this trying time.

Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.