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H&M to release its first ever Pride collection

Jess Glass May 25, 2018

(H&M)

Budget fashion retailer H&M is set to release its first ever Pride collection of clothes and accessories.

The collection, which is inspired by the 70’s, will feature a range of items including t-shirts, crop tops, jeans, shorts, hoodies and accessories that feature rainbows and pro-LGBT phrases.

The release of the collection on May 31 will be the first time the brand has made a “cohesive” set of clothes and accessories in support of the LGBT community and Pride events.

The clothes will launch in the 148 H&M stores across the US, as well as a physical release in stores in Canada. The collection will also be available globally online.

(H&M)

“H&M believes in everybody’s right to love who they want. We hope people can use H&M’s Pride collection to celebrate their belief in equal love.” Andreas Lowenstam, H&M’s Head of Menswear Design told WWD.

“Equality, diversity and inclusivity have been deeply rooted in our values for a long time,” H&M spokesperson Emily Scarlett added.

H&M launched a campaign to join the collection in collaboration with Out magazine, featuring decorated Olympic skier Gus Kenworthy and RuPaul’s Drag Race star Aja.

(H&M)

Songwriter Kim Petras and models Gabrielle Richardson and Shaun Ross also feature in the campaign.

10% of the proceeds from the collection will reportedly be donated to the United Nations Human Rights Office Free & Equal campaign.

In February, luxury fashion house Burberry launched a new rainbow themed collection in support of three major LGBTQ+ charities as part of London Fashion Week.

(H&M)

Related: One Million Moms attack ‘transgender’ H&M model… but she’s not actually trans

Other retailers have begun to release their own Pride-themed merchandise in the build-up to June’s Pride month and events across the globe.

On Tuesday, Primark announced that it will bring Pride merch to select stores across Europe and the US as part of a partnership with British LGBT charity Stonewall.

Under the deal, Stonewall will receive 20 percent of the proceeds of the rainbow-branded range, which is hitting individual stores to coincide with Pride events this summer.

However, Stonewall’s partnership with cut-priced clothing company has prompted a controversy.

Many of the Pride products are made in countries where it is illegal to be gay.

Others questioned why cash-strapped local Pride organisers were getting no money from the sales in their own cities.

The UK Pride Organisers Network, which brings together organisers of more than 140 LGBT+ Pride events around the UK, branded the deal an “insult” in a statement to PinkNews.

(PATRICIA DE MELO MOREIRA/AFP/Getty Images)

The group said: “The Network was disappointed to see that proceeds [are] not being donated to the Pride organisations that organise these events.

“Instead, it is being given to Stonewall who, whilst they attend some Prides, do not organise the events themselves.

“All Pride organisations are voluntary bodies that struggle every year to raise the funds necessary to hold these major public events, most of which are free to attend.

“In the last week, in one city where Primark will be selling these products, the Pride has announced it is scaling back its event due to a lack of funds. This is a daily reality for most Pride organisers.”

In 2017, Primark was criticised for “cashing in” on Pride events, after selling Pride merchandise without any of the proceeds going towards LGBT charities or causes.

More: Canada, fashion, gus kenworthy, H&M, Pride, UK, US, US

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