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H&M unveils small format store in Berlin, tests rentals

Fashion retailer H&M has opened a new ‘hyper-local flagship’ in Berlin’s creative Mitte Garden district.

The 300sqm store, one of the brand’s smallest worldwide, offers curated womenswear, selected external brands, vintage pieces and a showroom for customers. It features curated fashion from H&M’s own assortment as well as selected external brands, most of them Berlin based. 

The selected assortment is paired with a digital tool offering H&M’s full range where customers can browse and build their looks on their own or aided by a stylist.

“It’s a test for us as a global retailer to elaborate around how we can be more personal and locally relevant,” said H&M Group laboratory business developer Anna Bergare.

H&M Mitte Garten will regularly offer events such as lectures, fashion talks and yoga for its customers. Upcoming trends and looks will be presented in the public showroom. Here consumers can try on and borrow pieces to make sure their future purchases are consciously made.

“This is a unique location and it has served as a meeting place for Berliners for more than 100 years,” said H&M Germany country manager Thorsten Mindermann. “[It’s] a tradition we want to honour. We aim to offer a neighbourhood store serving as a platform for local and global talents within retail, culture and art.”

Rentals move in Sweden

The opening comes as the brand gets ready to debut clothing rentals in its Stockholm flagship store. The brand is offering the chance to rent selected party dresses and skirts from its 2012–2019 Conscious Exclusive collections to members of its customer loyalty programme.

“We have looked at clothing rental for quite some time and are so happy to for the first time soon offer fashion fans the possibility to rent some stunning pieces from our Conscious Exclusive collections,” H&M said head of sustainability Pascal Brun. “We look forward to evaluating this as we are dedicated to change the way fashion is made and consumed today.”

Members will be able to rent up to three pieces a time for a week at a cost of around SEK350 (US$36) per piece.

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