As one of the official social media partner at YDC 2015, I had a chance to chat with one of the special judges, Margareta van den Bosch, Creative Advisor at H&M. Being the creative brain for the multi-national company for 27 years, Margareta is one legend in the business. It was a truly LUSH TALK with her on design…
You have been in the creative industry for a long time. How was your early days in design?
I was trained at a design school, long time ago. And afterwards, I took tailoring courses and started working in Italy mostly… for 22 years. I went over to Sweden, and landed at H&M which is based in Stockholm. I arrived at 1987 – it’s been 27 years!
So how is it working at H&M?
It was fun! I’ve been there for a long time, and when it was the 21st year, I have decided to work a bit less – as I was turning 65. It has been 6 years I have been working as their Creative Advisor, time flies!
What is designing like at the multi-national firm?
Design is very important – we have 250 designers, spreading among menswear, womenswear, and children’s wear departments. All of these groups are under a manager, whom I work closely with. It is totally different from when I first started there – there were only 7 designers, and the shops were only in 6 countries. Now, we are in 25 countries and lots of designers in the team!
What do you think about the Hong Kong fashion scene?
There are lots of happenings in Hong Kong, and fashion is very versatile here. You have a big market for evening wear, which is totally opposite to Sweden – people there are more casual, and not a lot of occasions to wear evening gowns.
And what do you think about the designs of the YDC contestants?
The designs and level of craftsmanship are very good, great creativity. A lot of the collections has got a vote from me.
Do you have any advise for the young fashion designers?
I think it is very important for them to work in a company first before they start going solo. This would help them get more hands-on experience and understand the business more – and they can decide what to do after.
Margareta and me
It was a very enjoyable chat with Margareta van den Bosch, “mother of the Swedish fashion industry”. Her creative input will continuously drive the designer collaborations and focus more on emerging designers, visiting the graduation showsof a number of fashion schools and contests (such as Young Designers’ Contest here in Hong Kong) to scout for new design talents. Speaking of which, who will H&M be collaborating with next after Alexander Wang?
Margareta didn’t want to spoil the fun of guessing… so I have no clue either!
As a daughter of an entrepreneur and being one herself, Grace has lived and learned all sides of creating and growing businesses. She is excited to bring all that life experience as well as 7 years of crafting content to G Edition, her very own edition of experience sharing in work and travel. She is a full-time bag designer and manufacturer, part-time traveler, and a lover of creative crafts.