A look at the H&M head office atrium lobby and cafeteria in Stockholm, Sweden. (Guests are typically not allowed to take photos, but I got special permission to snap this one.)
“Everyday is a fashion show here at the H&M cafeteria,” Hacan Andersson tells me as we dig in to our “Dagens Lunch” at the company’s headquarters in Stockholm during a recent visit. (Sadly, it’s not open to the public.) While we eat our very Swedish daily special—beef burgers with mushroom sauce, pickled winter vegetables and lingonberries—he explains how much fun it is to people-watch here the day after a new collection come out in stores. “It’s so interesting to see people wearing things in new ways,” the 28-year company veteran tells me of his fellow fashion-forward staff. (He’s not kidding: Over by the salad bar, I spotted a woman wearing a scarf from the Isabel Marant collab as a belt.)
Find out what is the most-coveted accessory...
But the most-coveted accessory this past February seemed to be H&M’s blue and yellow "Sweden" Olympic collection toque, which was already sold out in most stores. (There was some playful talk at our lunch table about trying to swipe the seemingly last remaining hat from one of the lobby mannequins displaying the collection. But we resisted.) My favourite discovery during the visit was the long black table that anchors the lobby space. You can’t tell from the picture above, but both ends of the table are actually a set of stairs…which means (you guessed it!) it can double as a fashion runway. Andersson explained that the company regularly hosts internal fashion shows to debut new collections to its staff—and that company CEO Karl-Johan Persson has even walked the runway. Read More:
Isabel Marant for H&M: A blockbuster fashion collab
Free fashion week food: If you have time to eat it!