Clothing retailer H&M on Thursday debuted the Designed by Madonna line, and many of the items have already landed on eBay.
“We are watching where the items appear,” H&M spokeswoman Jenni Tapper-Hoël tells PEOPLE.
“We prefer people to buy our garments in stores,” but the chain doesn’t mind the online auctions “provided it is a few pieces that are being sold by people and not a big party behind it.”
H&M has branches in 18 states and Washington, D.C., and some shoppers had lined up at dawn to be first through the doors. Hot items include the Madonna trenchcoat, sunglasses, kimono silk dress and capri pants, all of which are already for sale online – with some trenchcoats offered at double the retail price.
“We also saw this happen when we sold ranges for Karl Lagerfeld, Stella McCartney, as well as Viktor & Rolf,” says Tapper-Hoël. “We can’t do anything about it.”
H&M previously collaborated with Madonna last year for her Confessions Tour, on which all tour members – including the band, dancers and crew – wore H&M designs. As part of the cross-promotion, the store sold a specially designed Madonna tracksuit and she her singers appeared in ad for the company.
In New York City there was a mixed turnout at stores on Thursday morning. While the H&M store at 59th and Lexington had only around 10 people at the doors for opening time, the branch at 51st and 5th had more than 100 people, including TV camera crews, waiting to get inside.
But Madonna fans on the West Coast lined up early to snag first dibs in the 30-piece collection (accessories include a black turban). The first person at California’s Beverly Center Mall was Heather Biede, who arrived at 6 a.m.
“I’m a huge fan of Madonna and I’ve been seeing her in the ads for the longest time,” Biede, 33, a massage therapist and personal trainer from Pasadena, told PEOPLE. “The clothes are so cute and I definitely want to buy some stuff and hopefully win an autographed trench coat.”
(For info about that contest, and to comment on Madonna’s fashion line, check out our Off the Rack blog.)
The thought of selling her purchases online was near-sacrilegious to Biede. “I would so keep it! I would never eBay it,” she said. “I want to wear it to a special occasion, I really want to wear it to my step-mother’s birthday party. I can also get the shoes so the whole outfit would be Madonna.”
• Reporting by ANDREA DESIMONE and AMY ELISA KEITH
And for fans who aren’t close to an H&M, they can at least check out this commercial: