After 15 years and countless collections, the news that H&M is collaborating with yet another designer isn’t exactly break-the-internet material. But waking up this morning, we did get excited — like really excited — about the Swedish retailer’s latest project. For the first time in H&M history, a Latin American designer has entered the mix. Johanna Ortiz, the Colombian designer known for her inventive use of floral prints and exotic colours, is joining a long list of big-name creatives who’ve worked alongside the brand, from Karl Lagerfeld in 2004 to Giambattista Valli in 2019.
To kick off the collection, Ortiz and H&M are “pre-dropping” four dresses that fall in line with the designer’s signature style: a mini dress; a tiered, button-up dress; a tunic; and a wrap number — all derived from prints in Ortiz’s archive. But we won’t have to wait long for the full collection, which is set to debut in March of 2020. According to Vogue, the designer plans to use this collaboration to help support the training program she runs in her hometown of Cali, Colombia; a vocational school of sorts for local craftspeople to learn sewing and embroidery skills.
Like all of H&M’s past designer collaborations, this one will provide shoppers with the chance to purchase their favourite labels at a fraction of the price. Currently sold at Moda Operandi, Matches Fashion, and Net-A-Porter, a Johanna Ortiz original would regularly cost you between £80 and £3000. At H&M, they’ll max out at around £55.