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Herald Square, Penn Plaza: Sonia Rykiel Ghost Towns

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By now, you've surely read the account of the complete lack of excitement up at the flagship H&M at 5th Ave and 51st Street, but we also strolled into two other locations to check out the selection and scene: H&M Herald Square and H&M Penn Plaza.

Both were complete ghost towns, as you can see in our photos above. Despite racks so stuffed with Sonia that you could barely put pieces back, only a few shoppers were interested. And this was well before it started raining; we entered the Herald Square location around 9:30am and the Penn Plaza one a little over an hour after that. Thanks to the space and bulk of items, we had plenty of time to look over each piece and summarily reject them.

Is it possible that women who wear a size 6 all have the same size boobs? Because H&M sure thinks so; most bra sizing went by the clothing size scale, rather than the cup size (we believe only the fanciest bras had the cup size, and boy did those run small; we had major renaissance boob even after going up a cup). With no bra fitting properly, we turned to accessories and clothing.

Believe it or not, the Herald Square H&M boasted a huge selection, with a lot of every piece but the velvet pillow, which we later found among the limited variety at H&M Penn Plaza. Herald Square even had about twenty of the one-shoulder velvet dress, which no one touched?a $99 pricetag for that was a bit much.

So yes?let's talk about price. If you thought that the $299 dresses from the Jimmy Choo collab were overpriced, then don't go anywhere near Sonia Rykiel. Granted her stuff isn't up in the three-digit range, but when a very basic, short black velvet robe costs $70, we move on. Too bad too, because we were really coveting the long peach silk robe.

But what really ruined the entire collection for us, what made us suspect the whole collection of poor quality and serious overpricing, was the jeweled fascinator cap thing, pictured here on Lily Cole. If you expected anything better than a 5th grade art project, then you will be disappointed. The black felt on the $39.95 item is crudely cut, like done with scissors, the plastic jewels are badly sewn on and many are loose, and it all could be assembled for less than $10 and a trip to the craft store. In fact, we think we know what we're doing with the rest of today! The pillow and mules were pretty blah as well.

Sonia, we love you, but we cannot see you selling some of these items in your own boutiques, as you're supposedly doing. But in the interest of full discretion, we admit to buying the sheer pants (worn with black tights underneath, they come off like perfect unexpected luxury) and the stupid silk bow headband, for a friend who wanted it really badly and promises to pay us back. She better too.
· Above the Fray: Total Lack of Chaos For Rykiel, H&M [Racked]
· H&M unveils racy new lingerie range in dazzling catwalk show starring Lily Cole [Mail UK]
· All Sonia Rykiel pour H&M coverage [Racked]

34th street and broadway, new york, ny