Swedish fashion chain H&M is teaming up with Sonia Rykiel for its next guest collaboration - and will for the first time extend its designer venture into lingerie and related accessories.
The iconic French designer, best known for her signature knits, will launch two collections with the high street chain for winter 2009 and spring 2010.

The first is the lingerie line, which will be launched in 1,500 H&M stores worldwide on 5 December, and at the same time will be rolled out in Sonia Rykiel's major boutiques around the world.

The second range for spring 2010 will feature an iconic knitwear collection for women and girls, and will be available in around 250 H&M stores next February.

"This is a totally modern, new kind of lingerie look, and when we started to work together with Rykiel on it, we just couldn't stop," says H&M creative advisor Margareta van den Bosch. "It's a wonderful highlight for our main collection."

Nathalie Rykiel, president and artistic director of Sonia Rykiel, adds: "This collaboration fits perfectly with our philosophy," says Nathalie Rykiel, president and artistic director of Sonia Rykiel.

"The 'Sonia Rykiel pour H&M' lingerie collection is the ideal way to offer the essence of Rykiel to a great number of women around the world."

Sonia Rykiel is the only French group in the fashion industry to remain family-owned and 100% independent.

This is the latest in a long line of alliances between H&M and leading designers, the most recent of which is a shoe, bag and accessories range with the Jimmy Choo brand due to launch in November.

Other collaborations have been with British designer Matthew Williamson and Comme des Garçons designer Rei Kawakubo.