|Girls "protesting" during Chanel's S/S '15 show in|
Paris; image source: marthafashiondiary.com
The case is simple: France's biggest and most powerful fashion brand Chanel staged a mockery of a protest at the end of its Spring/Summer 2015 show, apparently without an ulterior motive. The house's main designer Karl Lagerfeld (known for his lack of interest in politics) sent Chanel-clad models down the runway carrying signs that read all kinds of things, from feminist messages like "History is her story" and "Ladies first" to non-sense such as "Boys should get pregnant too".
All of that in order to create a mood which will complement his 70s inspired collection and at the same time make fun of protesting which seems to be a very French thing to do. What he doesn't seem to realize, though, is that protesting is a very serious (and often the only) way of making a change and shouldn't be exploited for attention.
The first problem I have with the faux protest is that it is highly insensitive and confirms the world's stereotypes that fashion people are brainless creatures who live "in their own bubble" and take every-thing as a joke. While attendees dressed in five thousand dollar tweed-jackets were recording the fauxtest with their newest iPhones to then quickly share it on social media as "THE EVENT OF THE SEASON", the citizens of Hong Kong were protesting for their democracy and the Ukrainians were pulling down a massive statue of Lenin. Pretty much the same, right?
The second problem is the feminist angle. Always looking for a way to be in vogue, magazine editors instantly recognized the opportunity of a hot topic and tweeted videos of the protest while describing it as 'feminist'. Now, let's slow down a minute. We have a large corporation whose goal is to make money out of telling women they'll be beautiful if they wear Chanel and highly-paid models who are given money to stage a march while holding pointless signs that someone else has created. Feels a little counterproductive to turn these feminism activists into puppets for your show, doesn't it?
|"Tweed is better than tweet" reads one of the signs at Chanel's faux protest for S/S '15; image source: style.com|
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