Urban Jungle is my biggest fashion challenge to date, bringing forward the bold personality in each of us. It’s the new Kenzo x H&M collection that’s going to be available in over 250 selected stores worldwide and online starting November 3rd.

I always liked the Kenzo spirit. It embodies FREEDOM in the most primordial way possible with an urban twist. It brings together the jungle, the animal inside, the no-boundaries and free behaviour that living creatures may have.

But the collaboration with H&M was really a surprise and I dare to say it’s by far, the craziest and boldest designer – collection that H&M did so far. As they describe it as “An inferno of playfulness, bold prints and vivid colours.”

That would be the visual part. But when it comes to emotion, it a mix of every raw emotion there is. There’s a mix of everything but in the same, it comes together as a whole, it has a strong urban vibe to it and it will manage to color any room it will be put in. It feels like it’s a lot about emotions and expressing yourself in a free way, with no thoughts, just expression and feelings.

Kenzo x H&M puts on a pedestal THE UNDERDOG. The misfits, the weird kids, the hipsters, the crazy fashionistas – this collection celebrates individuality and the little things that make EACH OF US DIFFERENT from the others. It celebrates unique personalities and it tells the mainstream fashion world that it’s okay to embrace your style as far as it can go, without caring about minimal trends or fitting in with the crowd. Be yourself, celebrate yourself, unleash yourself into the URBAN JUNGLE.

Although, to be able to wear it and make it look street-ready, you need to put a lot of thought into it. At least I had to. It was my biggest challenge to date. I thought it was fun to do it at first, when I went to the H&M Romania showroom to pick my outfits and try them on. I came home and went to sleep after brainstorming with my photographer friend, AnaMa about locations and moods.

It’s the first time ever when I was so nervous and stressed about being able to pull a look that I literally couldn’t sleep. I went to sleep for 3 hours while dreaming about how in the world can I wear the colorful outfit and where to do it, and how? I woke up and couldn’t go back to dreaming about the Urban Jungle or anything else. So I just stayed up until the morning moodboarding and looking through all the fashion editorials that I could find that were Jungle, Tribal, Animal, Bothanical Garden and Urban Jungle Themed. I looked through make-up, through positions, moods, hairstyles etc.

I just browsed for six hours and came up with the idea of doing the white make-up around the eyes to match the hair (I styled the hair a bit wilder and crazier than ever) and my inner mood – warrior-elf-full-of-light-human-being. And also, I came up with the idea of doing this editorial as a character and going as far as possible with it, going in it like in a movie. Not as a street-ready but as an animal who escaped on the streets and got to play around.

It was the first time ever when people stopped and laughed so hard at me while I was shooting this. It was a mean laugh, they just were so amused by it, you could tell that they never saw that before on the streets of Bucharest and it made the experience more fun and it made me more relaxed, seeing how the character and the clothes brought so much good disposition.

I never thought that I could roam the streets dressed like this. It was fun, it made me be more brave and put every single piece of energy I had into it and I thank the wonderful girls from H&M Romania (Ruxandra & Ioana) for this. And Kenzo for creating this madness. It was a good challenge, I am ready for some more!

Photo concept & story, modelling & styling by Edi Enache, The Fashion Jumper

Photography by AnaMa Popescu

Editing by The Fashion Jumper

Wearing all (except shoes) Kenzo x H&M clothes

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