British luxury fashion house Burberry came under fire after they featured a hoodie with an apparent noose hoodie around the neckline at London Fashion Week. The design garnered attention after model Liz Kennedy took to Instagram criticising Burberry for the insensitivity. Along with posting pictures of the hoodie, in a long post expressing her concern, she wrote, "Suicide is not fashion. It is not glamorous nor edgy, and since this show is dedicated to the youth expressing their voice, here I go."
The post went viral with people condemning Burberry's nautical themed creation asking them to be considerate towards such sensitive topics. Mentioning the rising rates of suicides around the world, the model in her post further writes, "A massive brand like Burberry who is typically considered commercial and classy should not have overlooked such an obvious resemblance. I left my fitting extremely triggered after seeing this look (even though I did not wear it myself)." UK Fashion Brand Boohoo Criticised for Selling Pyjamas With 'Obsessive Christmas Disorder' Written on It.
The description of Burberry's Tempest line on their website says they drew "inspiration from the contrasts in British culture and weather." However, it doesn't mention the sea or a nautical theme. Dolce & Gabbana Called Out for Their Racist Ad by Diet Prada, Forced to Cancel Shanghai Fashion Show.
Here is Liz Kennedy's Instagram post:
View this post on Instagram
@burberry @riccardotisci17 Suicide is not fashion. It is not glamorous nor edgy and since this show is dedicated to the youth expressing their voice, here I go. Riccardo Tisci and everyone at Burberry it is beyond me how you could let a look resembling a noose hanging from a neck out on the runway. How could anyone overlook this and think it would be okay to do this especially in a line dedicated to young girls and youth. The impressionable youth. Not to mention the rising suicide rates world wide. Let’s not forget about the horrifying history of lynching either. There are hundreds of ways to tie a rope and they chose to tie it like a noose completely ignoring the fact that it was hanging around a neck. A massive brand like Burberry who is typically considered commercial and classy should not have overlooked such an obvious resemblance. I left my fitting extremely triggered after seeing this look (even though I did not wear it myself). Feeling as though I was right back where I was when I was going through an experience with suicide in my family. Also to add in they briefly hung one from the ceiling (trying to figure out the knot) and were laughing about it in the dressing room. I had asked to speak to someone about it but the only thing I was told to do was to write a letter. I had a brief conversation with someone but all that it entailed was “it’s fashion. Nobody cares about what’s going on in your personal life so just keep it to yourself” well I’m sorry but this is an issue bigger than myself. The issue is not about me being upset, there is a bigger picture here of what fashion turns a blind eye to or does to gain publicity. A look so ignorantly put together and a situation so poorly handled. I am ashamed to have been apart of the show. #burberry. I did not post this to disrespect the designer or the brand but to simply express an issue I feel very passionate about.
Following social media outrage, Burberry CEO Marco Gobbetti and their Chief Creative Officer Riccardo Tisci Who designed the show apologised. In a statement, Gobbetti said, "We are deeply sorry for the distress caused by one of the products that featured in our [Autumn/Winter] 2019 runway collection Tempest. Though the design was inspired by the marine theme that ran throughout the collection, it was insensitive, and we made a mistake." Gobbetti also added that the hoodie had been pulled from their latest collection, and images featuring it have been removed from Burberry's website.
Tisci in a statement said, "I am so deeply sorry for the distress that has been caused as a result of one of the pieces in my show on Sunday. While the design was inspired by a nautical theme, I realize that it was insensitive. It was never my intention to upset anyone. ... I will make sure that this does not happen again."