Burberry Agrees 'Suicide isn't fashion', Apologizes For Parading Lynching Noose Down Runway

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Burberry Agrees 'Suicide isn't fashion', Apologizes For Parading Lynching Noose Down Runway

Add another “what were they thinking!!!” designer must-have to your Fall 2019 luxury shopping list. Insisting that the design was inspired by a marine theme that ran throughout the entire collection, Burberry agrees that their noose is easily understood as making both suicide and lynching fashionable. Given everything that’s happening around Gucci and Prada’s wild-side walk with blackface, it’s pretty incredible that these mishaps keep happening.

"We are deeply sorry for the distress caused by one of the products that featured in our A/W 2019 runway collection," Marco Gobbetti, Burberry chief executive officer, said in a statement provided to CNN.

The design was criticized by model Liz Kennedy, who wore it on the runway and claims that her expressed concerns about the noose were dismissed. Even wearing it during the show potentially put Kennedy in her own tough spot with social media. It was Kennedy who posted this message to Burberry on her Instagram:

Gucci Chief Executive Marco Bizzarri Meeting With Dapper Dan Over Blackface Sweater Disaster

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Gucci Chief Executive Marco Bizzarri Meeting With Dapper Dan Over Blackface Sweater Disaster

Gucci Chief Executive Marco Bizzarri is planning to meet with Dapper Dan and other African-American leaders during a trip to New York this week to discuss the sweater debacle. “"I am a Black man before I am a brand," he wrote. “Another fashion house has gotten it outrageously wrong,” Dapper Dan said in an Instagram post. “There is no excuse nor apology that can erase this kind of insult.”

The renowned Harlen fashon designer and tailor originally gained fame knocking off Guuci’s logo in the ‘80s and ‘90s, before finding itself in the drivers seat when Alessandro Michele knocked off one of Dapper Dan’s designs in his own 2018 Resort collection. The two men signed a peace treaty with Dapper Dan collaborating with Gucci on a vintage hip-hop-inspired capsule collection. Then Kering stepped in to underwrite Dap’s new studio and atelier in Harlem, while making him the face of a special tailoring campaign. Gucci has also underwritten several art events celebrating black culture in Harlem and around New York.

As the former head of product development and fashion director for Victoria’s Secret, I recommend that Gucci load up a corporate jet with design talent and head for Washington, DC and a trip to the African American Museum of African American History and Culture. This will give them a complete understanding of the sensitivity of black face in America to progressives of every skin color.

Gucci Pulls $900 Balaciava Sweater Labeled Racist Blackface | Spike Lee Launches Gucci-Prada Boycott

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Gucci Pulls $900 Balaciava Sweater Labeled Racist Blackface | Spike Lee Launches Gucci-Prada Boycott

Gucci has apologized after social media voices said that its $900 balaclava sweater resembled blackface. The sweater has been removed from Gucci stores and online.

In a Twitter post on Wednesday, the brand said it "deeply apologizes for the offense caused by the wool balaclava jumper." It then added to the post:

"We can confirm that the item has been immediately removed from our online store and all physical stores.

"We are fully committed to increasing diversity throughout our organization and turning this incident into a powerful learning moment for the Gucci team and beyond."

Blackface — the act of non-black people wearing makeup to try to look black — is front and center in American politics, with the VA Democratic governor Ralph Northam and Attorney General Mark Herring both admitting to having dressed up to impersonate a black person. Blackfrace has a racist history in the United States. It was used in minstrel shows, movies, and other forms of entertainment that sought to dehumanize African-Americans and exclude them from the entertainment industry. In an extension of the blackface issue, I learned today that US Secretary of Energy and former Governor of Texas Rick Perry’s family ranch is named Niggerhead.

In the 19th century, actors caricatured black slaves, wearing burnt cork or shoe polish on their faces to make themselves look "black." The performances "characterized blacks as lazy, ignorant, superstitious, hyper-sexual, and prone to thievery and cowardice," according to the National Museum of African-American History & Culture.

Our liberal American nerves are just fried over this racist nonsense in America. Social media posts arguing that there was no need to put red lips on the Gucci sweater — unless the intention was to create a blackface fashion statement — if one desired — resonate. AOC has a history of pushing back on what we feel is an absurd level of political correctness in our culture and fashion world. But sweaters like the Gucci one or Prada’s red lips, monkey trinket debacle from the Christmas holidays go too far.

Writer Nicole Dennis-Benn Shares Her Brooklyn-Based, Black Beauty Fashion Inspirations

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Writer Nicole Dennis-Benn Shares Her Brooklyn-Based, Black Beauty Fashion Inspirations

Nicole Dennis-Benn Finds Her Voice Through Fashion ELLE US

Bern explains that given that “I’ll always be ‘alien’ as a black person in America’, originally from Jamaica, she wears clothes from people who have her back. Literally. Bern bagged dressing to assimilate for years, trading her lower style profile to dressing to be seen in clothes created by black designers.

I have found community in black-owned boutiques. Martine’s Dream, in the heart of Crown Heights, Brooklyn, brings to mind the Caribbean with its island-inspired, bohemian-chic airy cotton dresses and skirts, its kimonos and caftans. TracyChambers Vintage and Indigo Style Vintage, also both Brooklyn-based, sell timeless pieces— from sweaters reminiscent of Denise Huxtable’s wardrobe on The Cosby Show to pleated dresses with shoulder pads and gold buttons that are very Clair Huxtable.

Kim Kardashian Hawks Dolce & Gabbana, Then Pulls Instagram Story As Confused Followers Express Dismay

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Talent mogul Kim Kardashian had the equivalent of a senior moment, rushing to produce an Instagram Story praising Italian luxury brand Dolce & Gabbana’s big box of goodies sent her by the controversial luxury brand. In the short clip, the KKW Beauty mogul pans across several sequinned tuxedo jackets while narrating, “So I come home to these amazing, huge Dolce & Gabbana boxes”.

By now Kardashian knows that her every move is under the microscope, leaving people confused that days after announcing that she and husband Kanye West are expecting a fourth child via IVF, she would use her reputation to advance a brand that advocated against IVF, saying “We oppose gay adoptions. The only family is the traditional one…. No chemical offsprings and rented uterus: life has a natural flow, there are things that should not be changed.”

Kardashian pulled her Insta Story within hours, but one wonders exactly what she was thinking. AOC doesn’t disparage Kim Kardashian in any way. We’re not KK haters but admirers of her frankly prodigious business talents and ability to live in the limelight 24/7. But surely Kardashian knows that the Dolce & Gabbana brand is newly-toxic, yet again over its controversial antics and subsequent cancellation of their late fall 2018 Shanghai show.

In reality, the Dolce & Gabbana brand is aligned far closer to the Trumplandia values embraced by her husband Kanye West than her own more progressive ones. One wonders if Kanye told the DG boys to send over the loot, so Kim could hawk it. How much $$$ was it worth to all parties involved.

EYE: Chinyere Ezie Educates Prada On Why Fat Red Lips On Black Bodies Are Not Good Trinkets In America

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EYE: Chinyere Ezie Educates Prada On Why Fat Red Lips On Black Bodies Are Not Good Trinkets In America

The best paragraphs in Robin Givhan’s WaPo commentary “Seriously, Prada, what were you thinking?: Why the fashion industry keeps bumbling into racist imagery” isn’t the narrative around Prada’s utter stupidity in their SoHo window display of items from their Pradamalia collection.

AOC readers know that we do not hop on the bandwagon of every alleged act of fashion industry cultural appropriation or racism. But Givhan is correct and we concur: what in goddesses name were you thinking Prada?

Let’s take a different approach here because Givan has done a superb job of also telling the experience of Chinyere Ezie’s reaction upon seeing the Prada store window in Soho. We will quote liberally in a moment, but let’s back up even further and introduce Prada to this woman. From her website:

Chinyere Ezie (Cheen-Yer-Ray Ay-Zee-Ay) is a nationally recognized civil rights lawyer and social justice activist who specializes in constitutional litigation and anti-discrimination work. In 2016, Chinyere was named one of the country's Best LGBT Lawyers Under 40. 

Chinyere is a 
Staff Attorney at the Center for Constitutional Rights where she focuses on racial justice, gender justice, and LGBT rights work. Chinyere previously worked as a Staff Attorney at the Southern Poverty Law Center LGBT Rights Project, where she was lead counsel for transgender rights activist Ashley Diamond in her suit against the Georgia Department of Corrections. Chinyere also worked as a Trial Attorney at the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission where she successfully represented employees who had been subjected to discrimination--securing a $5.1 million dollar trial verdict. 

Chinyere is a William J. Fulbright Scholar and a graduate of Yale University and Columbia Law School, where she served as President of Columbia Outlaws and Editor in Chief of the Columbia Journal of Gender and Law. 

She also clerked on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and worked as an associate at Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen, and Hamilton LLP in New York City.

In her free time, Chinyere enjoys photography, graphic design, and spending time with her wife and puppy.

Based on her stellar credentials, Chinyere Ezie more than qualifies as Prada’s target customer, although she is not one. Now, via Robin Givhan’s narrative, we share Ezie’s experience on meeting up with Prada’s SoHo window. Personally, I think all the great African goddesses were her spirit wings in this painful life episode, quietly hopping as invisible spirits on her shoulders when Ezie left DC’s National Museum of African American History and Culture for the return trip to New York.

Life In A Heavy Space