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I have just returned from yet another amazingly successful shopping trip to H&M, and so I thought I would do some research and write an opinion.
H&M (or Hennes & Mauritz) was originally opened as Hennes (hers) - a woman's store in Sweden. The aim of cheap, quality high fashion clothing was so successful that the store grew and become the male and female clothing store H&M in 1968.
H&M provides clothing and accessories for men, women, teenagers, children and babies. The subdivisions are Hennes, Divided, BiB (Big is Beautiful), Conwell, among others and they also provide accessories, underwear and make-up. As each store is different some have limited stock and may not provide make-up or children's wear.
The variety of fashionable clothing is incredible! There is smart wear (appropriate for the office), smart-casual wear and the very casual. All are trendy and up-to-the-minute fashion. I love that they put the seperates that compliment each other most on the rail next to each other. So if a skirt catches your eye you are guaranteed to find a range of tops and shirts that go perfectly with it right there. There are point-of-sale tables with complimentary outfits and accessories everywhere to give you inspiration.
You can get t-shirts from around £4.99, skirts from £9.99, shirts from £9.99, trousers from £12.99, jackets from £30 - too much to mention! The bonus is that the clothes are also quality, long-lasting and most importantly they look it! Everything I buy comes from here and I have only ever had one polo-neck develop a hole under the arm. I buy on average about 5 pieces a week so I consider this a very good track record, and they replaced it straight away with no problems whatsoever.
The accessories are excellent. Loads of cool belts, most at around £4.99 and bags from £9.99 to £20.00. The belts, bags and jewellery compliment the clothes perfectly in that they range from very casual fun accessories to the more smart office wear accessories.
My gripes! - One would be that the trousers tend to be over long and so I usually have to take them up. It would be good if they could have a range of leg length as those of us who are larger are not necessarily tall! Also their sizing definitely favours the waif and so I am a size 18, whereas elsewhere I am a 14-16. I refused to buy this size until a friend pointed out that it is only a number and what does it matter, so I shrugged my shoulders and went big!
I find the Big is Beautiful section provides bigger size trousers with a shorter leg length but that is the only reason I would enter this section of H&M and it is a letdown compared to the rest of the store. It is a lot less fashionable and seems to contain many baggy jumpers and 'hide the bulge' type clothes.
The staff are very helpful (and trendy!) and will check their stock if you cannot find something in your size straight away. They bent over backwards to help me find the matching jacket to go with some trousers I had found. The changing rooms are well-lit (although there could be a few more in Glasgow's Buchanan Galleries shop!) and always staffed. Due to the myriad of clothes and the frequency with which they are updated, the staff cannot be expected to remember where everything is. Therefore if you need another size whilst trying clothes on then you will have to go and get it yourself. But I don't mind that at all - and it is fairly typical for most stores anyway.
H&M has floated down from heaven as far as I am concerned! Today I spent about £75 and bought a denim skirt, a jumper, 2 t-shirts, 2 bras, a pair of trousers and a belt! Brilliant! It is the only place that I am guaranteed to get loads of clothes in; and my boyfriend gives it a standing ovation because it only takes me a couple of hours in one shop to get everything I want! So he can just wait upstairs at the eateries for me happily. I can't recommend it enough, and I am currently trying to get a weekend job there so I can benefit from the staff discount!
Their website; www.hm.com is well laid out and clear. It is quite comprehensive, although it doesn't illustrate even 1/1000 of the stock that H&M actually provide. Unfortunately it doesn't do online ordering yet, but I am sure this is in the pipeline.