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Last night, surrounded by editors, top models, and a couple of Jenners, Balmain's Olivier Rousteing and H&M staged a New York runway presentation for their Balmain x H&M collaboration.
Rousteing's #BalmainArmy arrived in head-to-toe looks from the collection — Kylie Jenner in a heavily embellished minidress, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley in an emerald green power suit, and Alexa Chung in a black, double-breasted blazer dress. The show's theme was transit, and models made their way through a subway-inspired space amidst a bevy of voguing dancers and bright neon lights. Kendall Jenner opened the show, stunning in an embellished top with strong shoulders, while Jourdan Dunn and Gigi Hadid followed in similar black ensembles with gold accents — near replicas of some of Rousteing's previous collections for Balmain. The Backstreet Boys ended the show with a surprise performance even more nostalgic than, say, '80s-inspired shoulder pads.
Despite the show-stopping performances and event space, we were a little let down by the clothes. Heralded as one of H&M's most expensive collabs yet — with prices as high as $649 — the hand-beaded items just didn't translate well from their high-end origins. Wool and leather appeared stiff on the runway and the gold jewelry and accessories looked to be of the same shiny, costume-jewelry quality of H&M's usual offerings.
The H&M x Balmain collection won't hit stores until November 5. Until then, enjoy the behind-the-scenes moments our photographer captured from the show, from detailed close-ups to snapshots of all-star models.