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When Does Cultural Appreciation Become Cultural Appropriation When it Comes to Marketing?

Cultural appropriation seems to be a phrase that’s coming up more and more frequently on social media, particularly in conversations surrounding the fashion industry. Many popular fashion companies such as Victoria’s Secret, Savage X Fenty, Gucci, and Prada have been accused of cultural appropriation in designs and marketing. The Oxford English Dictionary defines it as “the unacknowledged or inappropriate adoption of the practices, customs, or aesthetics of one social or ethnic group by members of another (typically dominant) community or society.” A deeper understanding of cultural appropriation refers to when people in the dominant culture in society take elements from a culture that has previously been systematically oppressed. This means that in 2012 when Karlie Kloss walked down the Victoria’s Secret Runway wearing underwear paired with a Native American headdress, suede fringe, and turquoise jewellery the Navajo people were deeply offended as the outfit disrespected and trivialised their culture. When designers take inspiration from other people’s cultures, it lets them show a love for the cultural aesthetic. The caveat of that is that often, in doing so, these designers remain prejudiced against its people. Continue reading When Does Cultural Appreciation Become Cultural Appropriation When it Comes to Marketing?

Alexander McQueen: His Spirit Lives On (Part One)

It was one of those days where everyone involved in the fashion industry remembers exactly where they were and what they were doing. The afternoon of February 11th 2010. The world lost (to trot out the clichés) a visionary, a revolutionary and one of the best creative forces history has ever seen. If you haven’t already guessed who I’m talking about (and if you claim … Continue reading Alexander McQueen: His Spirit Lives On (Part One)

I’m Big in Japan

As a reflection of the unparalleled and uncompromising work ethic behind it, Japanese design continues to influence a variety of creative fields. Muji, which was founded upon the principles of ‘no-brand quality goods’ over thirty years ago has flourished globally, and is now instantly recognisable as a brand in its own right thanks to its minimal approach to Nippon-inspired home wares. The cool and industrious hallmarks of Japanese design … Continue reading I’m Big in Japan