Borderline Rioting – Diary of a queue: Balmain x H&M collection 5th November 2015

Regent street store

Snapchat story mimioc

When it comes to H&M colabs I would like to think of myself as a seasoned pro… I did the Isabella Marant in 2013 and the Alexander Wang last year … I know what I’m doing I think ….well no , actually .. I have royally misjudged this!! At 12.08am I set my alarm for 4.50. The thought of this little sleep does not bode well but I know that if I don’t turn up before 5.30 I will miss any chance of a decent spot in this queue !  Going to sleep with all good intentions intact.

  ….I slammed the snooze and only set off for Oxford street at 6…. Error number one.

Error number 2..Getting out from the underground I go straight to the H&M in Oxford Circus and the queue is around all four sides of the building about 500 strong. Uncommonly it’s mainly men at the front of the queue. I jump ship and move to the regent street store where it’s slightly less crazy!

I quickly make a couple of queue buddy’s and they save my space so I can have a look at the front of the queue.

   People have been queueing for 12hours!!  It’s now 7 am ! 

 Regent street is strewn with litter..people who have been here since 7pm last night and are literally scared to leave their spots go as far as a bin!

I am writing this in the queue where I have met some fabulous funny women all wanting a bit of Balmain.

After a few chats I’ve gathered that the most popular items are the iconic kylie dress and lots of love for the leather jackets and Blazers too!

They save my space again and and I go to the front where the queue has been divided into a men’s and women’s queue… The women’s queue is quieter but chatty in places..

Security is no where to be seen, I can’t find anyone to ask what’s going on and more people are joining … No sign of wristbands yet.

Security are back out of the store and are having problems with the men’s queue. The People have rocked up at 7.30 and joined the front of the queue ahead of those who have been queuing for hours, security are doing little and it’s mayhem!

2 and a half hours in the queue and they give us these! Quite a nice touch I think! People relax again after the queue jumper situation.

It’s just before 9 now and I’m waiting for my wristband … There are 20 time slots with 20 people allows in per slot. My new balmania friends and I are a shoe in as we are only about 30 people down the queue.

   Woman at the front of the women’s queue not happy with the queue jumping situation 

9.30 I have popped to the front of the queue again and spoken to a H&M manager to see where the wristbands are! Things are so out of hand they have closed the door. There are police everywhere trying to determine who’s been in the queue and its pandemonium!!
It’s 10.41 and there and the queue still isn’t moving and its starterd to rain .. I feel like I will die in this queue .. People are pushing in and it’s started to rain.

The chat in the queue has changed form what purchases will be made to how badly managed all of this is and how management should be sacked.

  It’s 11.39 now ….We are being told now that 30 people can go in at one time and have 5 minutes each. People are fuming!!!! As the first group were in for over an hour and came out with more bags than they could carry. People are getting emotional in the queue! Some people have been here now for 17 hours!

It’s now 1.30

It’s  now “unsafe” to enter the store, we are all being told to move back as people are getting crushed at the front of the queue… This again due to poor security and the lack the usual wristband situation.The security had been so lax at the beginning of the morning that the queue is not compleatly unmanageable even for the police, they have closed a fully stocked store due to poor management.

The Manager Mark spoke to a few of us then says he’s going inside to draught up a letter for us hard core queuers to explain what we can do next, as things have been so poorly managed.
The police disperse the queue and about 30 –40 remain, the ones who have been here from all night. People who have been queueing for as much as 11 hours are turned away and told that the stock is being boxed up and will be sold online now.

Thanks guys … I myself have now queued for 8 hours and am so close to the door where we watch through the glass – all of the stock being folded away.
The H&M store say its the police’s decision to shut up shop and there is nothing they can do. The police say “we wish we has that sort of power H&M can operate as they please” … Bearing in mind there is a modest queue at this point.

They decide not to allow the small queue that have been waiting for what seems like an eternity to enter. Mark never again emerges with his letter advising us what to do.

No wristbands were given out in this store today and no explanation of what the hell went wrong was given out in this store today!

H&M- I’ve waited a year for this and then on the street in a sleeping bag in the rain…

To say the least.I’m a sad Balmain fan. Your appalling management need training in for these situations.

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