Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to Vox.com, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.
COS, a contemporary fashion brand owned by H&M, announced yesterday that it would open its first store in America in the spring of 2014 in Soho—a big ol' bombshell for fans who have previously only been able to shop it overseas. Here, a breakdown of what the label is all about, and what this might mean for H&M's other sister label, the higher-end & Other Stories.
Launched in 2007, COS has stores in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East, but so far, none in the States. E-commerce isn't available in the U.S. yet either, but that's coming with the Soho store launch.
As for the overall style, think clean, simple, and sleek—much more inexpensive adaptations of Jil Sander and Céline. (See the fall campaign, lookbook, and individual looks through those links.) Pricing isn't cheap, though: a wool mohair coat on the UK site retails for £190 (roughly $304), and a pair of basic flat leather boots are £135 (around $216). They do men's, women's, and kid's, though the press release sent around doesn't include information on whether all three categories will be available in-store.
COS decision to land in Soho isn't surprising—there are two uncomfortably crowded H&Ms on Broadway—but given the price point and style, something further west makes more sense. They've chosen 129 Spring Street, which falls between Greene and Wooster.
Speaking of openings, there's another H&M brand to consider: & Other Stories. WWD quoted H&M president Daniel Kulle in March about the potential for a U.S. expansion there. He explained, "Everything is in the works and the plans. & Other Stories has the potential with other H&M brands to come to America. It looks very interesting for fashion-conscious females and is right-on [in terms of trend]. That's a brand we can take over to America."
· Bombshell: H&M's COS Is Coming to NYC! Specifically, Soho! [Racked NY]
· H&M's COS Brand Will Launch US E-Commerce in 2014 [Racked]
· H&M's Cos Brand Is Definitely Coming to America [Racked]