There are so many happenings in the world of masstige, they warrant a second post this week! So I'm going to get right to it.

The big news is that the Viktor & Rolf for H&M collection drops next Thursday. As suits the wonderfully wacky designers, you can preview the collection in a wonderfully wacky Flash-enabled minisite at H&M's website. The offerings range from a $10 bra to a $349 wedding dress; everything is pretty typical Viktor & Rolf--kind of retro secretary meets turn-of-the-century French prostitute. In other words, I don't think the line is going to sell out in an hour like Stella McCartney's last year, but there are some cool pieces. The skinny pants look great, I love the black-and-white underwear, and for those who can pull it off, there's an ultra-sexy tuxedo. Here are some of my favorite looks.

Like a starlet who's three hours late to an industry party, the Gap is getting in on the masstige game with 10 dresses from Brit designer (and It Girl fave) Roland Mouret. Three are part of Gap's (RED) initiative, with 50% of their sale prices going to the global AIDS initative. You can preview the entire collection here, and while I found the sketches somewhat unimpressive, the actual dresses look pretty cute on Lily Cole et al., below. Now, here comes the catch: The line will be sold mostly in Gap's overseas stores; a very limited number will be available in select NYC stores only, at some point later this month (the dresses hit the racks in Europe on Tuesday). I have my eye on the gray shirtdress (which, on my frame, will need a belt).

Target, no stranger to masstige, now has an exclusive line designed by Rafe, featuring $19.99 clutches and evening bags to $49.99 hobos and doctor's bags. The good news, for Rafe fans at least, is that the bags are very, well, Rafe--buckles, stitching, zippers, hardware. The bad news is that they're PVC (although for $50, did you expect leather?). Still, I think this doctor's bag is pretty cute.

Finally, this isn't really masstige per se, but the Thursday Styles section had a really interesting article today on what's become of Helmut Lang. To make a long story short, Prada bought the line, Helmut quit, Prada sold it to Link Theory (parent company of, yes, Theory), and they hired husband-and-wife team Nicole and Michael Colovos, who, coincidentally, left the label they started, Habitual jeans. However, instead of the high-fashion bastion of minimalism that Helmut Lang was in the '90s, the new direction for the label is "contemporary," i.e., it will now be sold next to Theory, Vince, and their breathren in places like Scoop and Fred Segal. So far the designers appear to be remaining true to Lang's aesthetic, but--sacre bleu!--they're cutting the skinny jeans to flatter more bodies, a move that's sure to alienate all the size-0 high fashion tastemakers out there. What will be interesting to see is whether the revamped line translates to the "contemporary" customer. In other words, is the girl who buys the boot-cut Max C trousers from Theory and the cute blouses from Marc by Marc Jacobs going to be into Helmut Lang's minimalist, androgynous, ultra-modern look? It's anyone's guess. While I definitely appreciate Lang's legacy, I, for one, prefer to look like a woman.

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