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‘Suicide is not fashion’: Burberry apologizes for hoodie with noose at London Fashion Week

‘Suicide is not fashion’: Burberry apologizes for hoodie with noose at London Fashion Week
Fashion giant Burberry has apologized after featuring a hoodie with a noose around the neck during its showcase at London Fashion Week, spark a wave of outrage over insensitivity towards suicide and racism.

One of its own models, Liz Kennedy, lambasted the brand for whom she is an ambassador, decrying both main connotations of the offending noose, saying: “Suicide is not fashion... Let’s not forget about the horrifying history of lynching either.”

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@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.

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Kennedy wrote that she was “extremely triggered” by the hoodie, recalling her own family’s experience with suicide, and claims she was told to write an email when she tried to complain in the dressing room during the show.

Burberry CEO Marco Gobbetti apologized on behalf of the brand saying Burberry was  “deeply sorry for the distress” caused and that “It was insensitive and we made a mistake.”

“We will reflect on this, learn from it and put in place all necessary actions to ensure it does not happen again,” he added in a written statement.

The hoodie appeared the catwalk on Sunday as part of Burberry’s ‘Tempest’ collection and has caused a flood of outrage online ever since, with many highlighting the recent slew of offensive gaffes in the fashion industry including Katy Perry’s blackface shoes, Gucci’s blackface jumper and Zara’s holocaust shirts, among others.

READ MORE:Racism or just an ugly shoe? Katy Perry’s new ‘blackface’ footwear sparks outrage

Not all online were entirely convinced of the allegedly racist overtones of the garment, but agreed it was insensitive nonetheless. Others called for a boycott of the fashion brand.

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