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H&M’s Next Designer Collaboration Is With Mugler

H&M is bringing sexy back — with the help of Mugler.

The Swedish fashion chain, resuming its high-profile designer collaborations in the post-pandemic period, announced Wednesday a tie-up with the Paris-based fashion house, confirming an earlier WWD report.

The collaboration, under the director of Mugler’s creative director Casey Cadwallader, will be available online and in stores for spring 2023.

Mugler declined all comment.

The Mugler brand, founded by Thierry Mugler in 1974 and a major fashion force in the ’80s and early ’90s, has been making fresh waves in recent years thanks to fierce collections and runway spectacles by Casey Cadwallader, artistic director of the fashion house since 2017.

Its notoriety and cultural impact have also been fanned by the hit “Thierry Mugler: Couturissime” exhibition, on through May 7 at the Brooklyn Museum after originating in Montreal in 2019 and touching down in Paris in 2021.

The “Better Denim” maker stated that this collection will “encapsulate the unique and vibrant spirit of Mugler.”

A look from Mugler’s fall 2022 collection. GIOVANNI GIANNONI/WWD

Now best known for its unapologetically sexy brand of power dressing, the brand sells its anatomically designed jeans, barely there catsuits and strong-shouldered tailoring on its website and to select retail partners include Net-a-porter, Ssense, Mytheresa and Nordstrom.

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H&M, which ignited high-low collaborations with a blockbuster 2004 collection by Karl Lagerfeld, has also sold collections by Stella McCartney, Moschino, Maison Margiela, Balmain, Isabel Marant, Comme des Garçons, Lanvin, Versace, Simon Rocha and Giambattista Valli.

Most of them sold out briskly, occasionally unleashing pandemonium in the Swedish retailer’s flagship stores.

But its latest collaborations have been infrequent and more low-key, including a 2022 Iris Apfel x H&M line.

It is understood H&M plans to put major firepower behind its 2023 design collaborations as competition for market share in the fast-fashion sector heats up.

Sources said a second designer collaboration is planned for later in the year with Puig-owned fashion house Paco Rabanne.

The Paris-based house, which showed its spring 2023 collection at the tail end of July’s couture week, is back on the official Paris Fashion Week schedule, slated to show on March 1 at 5:30 p.m.

Contacted on Tuesday by WWD, Rabanne officials declined to comment.

Rabanne’s creative director Julien Dossena has been leading the house, famed for its Space Age designs, since 2013, applying his meticulous, contemporary touch.

Spanish founder Paco Rabanne died earlier this month at age 88, remembered for his futuristic vision and use of nonconventional materials.