Hennes and Mauritz turn to Stella McCartney for autumn line

(AFP) High fashion will once again be available and affordable at mass-market retailer Hennes & Mauritz (H & M) stores when designer Stella McCartney's collection for the chain hits the shelves next autumn, the company said on Wednesday.

The daughter of former Beatle Paul McCartney “will design a women’s wear collection of around 40 items to be produced and distributed by H & M under the label ‘Stella McCartney for H & M'”, the company said in a statement.

McCartney’s line will be the Swedish retailer’s second venture into the world of high fashion after its hugely popular collection by German designer Karl Lagerfeld last autumn.

“Designing a one off collection for H & M is one of the most exciting and innovative ways to introduce my clothes to a broader range of women,” said McCartney, who in a joint venture with Gucci launched her eponymous label in 2001.

The collection is set to go on sale in November and will be available in selected H & M stores across Europe and North America, the company said.

McCartney has already begun working on the new line, but H & M spokeswoman Liv Asarnoj told AFP it was too early to say how many copies of each garment would be made. The company was criticized last year when its limited Lagerfeld collection was cleaned out within hours of going on sale.

“We are thrilled to collaborate with Stella McCartney… Her designs are modern and cool yet classic and wearable. We have long admired her sense of tailoring and femininity,” H & M head of design Margareta van den Bosch said in the company statement.

“Consumer research further confirmed the strong appeal of her brand,” she added.

H & M did not reveal the size of its budget for the Stella McCartney project or how much it expected to rake in on the collection.