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Rain, Sleeping in Cars; It's H&M Lanvin-Insanity West Coast Style

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This Saturday, the country was a witness to the near-apocalyptic Lanvin x H&M collaboration launch which took place at selected H&Ms across the country. While New York was besieged by Twitter rumors and an incognito Alber Elbaz safely hiding out in a Town Car to observe the madness, our fearless West Coast correspondent, Christianna Ablahad, took an early morning drive to experience the retail insanity at the San Diego mall H&M locale.

No, it's not a candlelight vigil, but it's some serious dedication for Lanvin x H&M

5:30am: I start driving to H&M. In the dark.

6:05am: Arrive at the mall after driving into the parking structure, prematurely congratulating myself when I see no cars, then remember the H&M is on the second level, where people of the logical variety parked.

6:07am: Walk up and see a line of approximately 100 people and curse the unexpected Lanvin obsession that’s taken hold of laidback San Diegans.

6:08am: Wait. Those are French people in front of me. OK, I feel better now.

6:40am: Another 20 people have formed behind me.

6:48am: Starbucks sets up in front of H&M and they come around taking orders and handing out free coffee! Wow! Feeling the solidarity now.

The sun begins to rise

6:52am: A cool girl next to me suggests I ask the people at the front of the line how long they’ve been waiting.

6:53am: Answer (behind blood-shot eyes): since midnight! And they had to dodge mall security and sleep in their cars for a bit, since you’re not allowed to be on the premises at that time.

6:55am: It starts to rain on our H&M parade!

7:00am: Starts raining harder.

7:11am: People are walking around with Lanvin canvas tote bags with red fabric flowers attached! What are they, prizes?

Cute, right? They're already on eBay

7:13am: Find out the totes are for the first 100 people in line. I’m not sure I made the cut-off, so I keep anxiously peering over to see if anything’s coming my way.

7:18am: The wristbands are coming! And bins with the tote bags!

7:22am: I got my purple wristband, meaning I could come back and shop at 9:25am-9:40am, and the second to the last tote bag, meaning I was 99th in line. Tote bag was in canvas with cute graphic on front, a mag and pink wool Lanvin for H&M scarf inside!

7:25am: Head back to my car to attempt to sleep for two hours. Fail.

8:30am: Ask Twitter follower who had a wristband with earlier shopping time about inventory. Answer: All of the accessories are gone already! Damn.

9:15am: I walk inside H&M to wait in line for my wristband color’s group turn and notice there is only one rack left with four dresses.

The remnants of the collection once we were inside

9:17am: A salesperson appears from behind the blocked off area with one Lanvin lipstick and announces, “I have a lipstick!” and places it on the top of the rack. Someone in the roped-off line emits a half-hearted, “Yay.”

9:24am: My group finally gets the go-ahead in and the first two girls grab all four dresses!

9:25am: Everything’s gone, gone!

9:30am: Dejected, I head to the fitting room where strategic shoppers are waiting for go-backs.

9:35am: One girl comes out and decides against the bronze ruffled number, so I grab it, even though it’s too big (that’s what tailoring is for), and head straight to the register.

· NYPD Busts the H&M Stabbing Rumor Currently Burning Up Twitter [RNY]
· Lanvin (Hearts) H&M's Shopping Frenzy [WWD, subscription only]

7007 Friars Road, San Diego, CA