Fashion guru: Versace ‘too much’ for Norway

Clothing retailer H&M’s alliance with Versace designers will not be a hit with Norwegian girls, a high-profile Norwegian fashion guru has warned.

Fashion guru: Versace 'too much' for Norway
Photo: Bahar (File)

The flamboyant Italian fashion house has teamed up with cut-price clothing retailer H&M to offer a Norwegians haute-couture at knock down prices. The collection goes on sale on November 17th and has been met with mixed reactions in Norwegian fashion circles.

“Versace is, to start with, very gaudy and generally a bit much,” fashion guru and editor of Vixen Magazine, Marianne Jemtegård , told NRK.

“That doesn’t quite fit the style of many Scandinavian women,” Jemtegård said.

H&M’s Versace line was run out on the boardwalk in New York on Tuesday night despite the reservations of fashion house heiress Donatella Versace herself who once said she would never work with low-cost retailers. Yet in recent years, H&M has made great inroads in North America and Europe, and the admission of Versace designs in select H&M boutiques is seen as a nod to the power of the Sweden-based clothing giant.

The collection is timely as the season for company Christmas parties, or julebord, is just around the corner. H&M and Versace will be hoping that well-healed Norwegians will be perusing stores and virtual boutiques in search of making a splash.

Jemtegård however thinks the exclusive line will be overlooked by julbord party-goers.

“(Versace’s H&M designs) are surely more for a select little group,” Jemtegård told NRK in reference to the deeply textured, pattern-rich Italian designer line started by Milan’s Gianni Versace in 1978.

The collection will be followed up by a further pre-spring collection which goes on sale in selected online stores on January 19th, 2012.

Jemtegård’s advice to women and girls has ranged from “remember rubber boots and sun cream” at music festivals to “don’t dress larger than you are” and is highly regarded in Norway fashion circles and makes regular appearances on TV. 

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Norway’s teenage girls taking more happy pills

The number of teenage girls in Norway taking antidepressants has soared by 53 percent in just seven years, with doctors blaming a "tremendous pressure to be successful".

Norway's teenage girls taking more happy pills
SSRI antidepressants - Key Foster
According to the Norwegian Prescription Database, 3822 girls, between the age of 15 and 19 were prescribed antidepressants in 2012, up from just 2494 in 2005. 
Willy-Tore Mørch, a psychologist and professor of child and adolescent mental health, blamed the images and ideals thrust at girls in the media. 
"Young girls are exposed to tremendous pressure when it comes to everything from appearance to sexual performance. This has only got worse and worse, especially with the arrival of social media," he said.