When I think of ethical, conscious fashion I think two things; it will be expensive and it won’t be available in my size!
So when I heard that H&M were releasing a conscious clothing range, I was intrigued but certain that they wouldn’t do any of the items in my size. After all, H&M has never really been known as a plus-size-friendly retailer.
In fact, it has been several years since I’ve even stepped into H&M. I have very limited patience when it coming to shopping so, when I went to H&M a few weeks ago, it was under duress. A straight sized friend wanted some basics so I entered with all intentions of simply browsing the sunglasses which are about the only item guaranteed to fit me.
And then I got browsing the jackets and stumbled across a beautiful, waterfall jacket in a rich mustard tone. I decided to take a punt and try it on, despite being only a size 14. And guess what, it fitted!
The fact that this jacket fitted me led to a 15-minute queue (yes, the queue was that bad) and means two things:
1) I purchased an item on impulse which goes against all my ethos.
2) The sizing in H&M is really off!
There is no way that I’m a size 14. Even when I’ve been at my slimmest, I still retain swimmer shoulders that rarely fit into a 14 jacket. I know that H&M is notoriously difficult in their sizing and have recently been taking steps to adjust that. However, it seems that they still have far to go in terms of consistency!
This jacket is currently available up to a size 16 but seems to be selling out fast. Given that I have sized down by two sizes in this jacket, I would say that it could easily fit up to a size 20. There is also room in the arms and shoulders for me to layer up with jumpers so, if you’re not as broad in the shoulder as me, this jacket may even fit larger.
What I love about this jacket are the styling options.
Although this was an impulse buy, I already had it in the back of my head that I wanted a coat-igan (I spoke about it in a previous blog post). A coat-igan is an item that I can wear as outerwear on warmer autumn days or as a cardigan/cover-up on chillier days.
When it comes to layering, I like to play with different lengths and the mid-calf length of this H&M conscious jacket really allows for this. In these photos, I am wearing the jacket with ankle-grazer jeans but it works just as well to elongate your legs when wearing a mini skirt. Come colder days, I plan to wear the jacket with over-the-knee boots and a midi-length skirt or dress. If I ever find the perfect wide-leg trousers then I’m convinced the jacket will look amazing billowing around the excess leg fabric.
The colour isn’t the most versatile but the majority of my wardrobe is made from neutrals; blacks, tans, whites. Each of these will look amazing against the deep mustard.
The jacket does also come in black if you prefer a more muted palette.
Shop My Style
I don’t associate quality with H&M. Their products are, typically, of the fast fashion variety. Clothes are not hard wearing or durable. They are not designed to be durable and this is reflected in the price and the style of their ranges. They are the epitome of fast fashion.
However, this jacket feels different. The H&M Conscious range feels different. The entire collection is designed for the slow fashion movement, a movement that I am moving ever towards in my attempts to be more conscious and a little more ethical in my consumerism.
This jacket is made from Lyocell, a hard wearing, environmentally friendly fabric that is becoming ever more popular on the high street. Lyocell is a man-made fabric created from wood pulp which itself is a product of sustainable forestry. The fabric is 100% biodegradable, plastic-free and designed to be washed at 30 degrees. It is also breathable and lightweight making it a very comfortable fabric.
I can see myself wearing the jacket across seasons and, if cared for correctly, it should last the distance.