After being accused of cultural appropriation of a piece of apparel common in Palestinian culture, Louis Vuitton removed a $705 stole off its virtual shops.
Following an outcry over the garment’s unique keffiyeh-like fringe and style, the “Louis Vuitton Monogram Keffiyeh Stole” mysteriously vanished from the iconic French fashion house’s website this week.
According to Louis Vuitton, “Inspired by the original Keffiyeh and embellished with House trademarks,” according to the Monogram Keffiyeh Stole.
The garment is popular in the Arab world and is seen as a symbol of Palestinian nationalism in some groups.
On Wednesday, Diet Prada, a watchdog site that claims to be “disrupting the fashion business,” took issue with the stole. Diet Prada questioned the timing of the product’s marketing after the horrific war between Israelis and Palestinians left hundreds dead and areas of the impoverished Gaza Strip destroyed to ruin.
According to the blog: “LVMH’s political stance is ‘neutral,’ yet they’re still selling a $705 logo-emblazoned keffiyeh, a traditional Arab headgear that has become a symbol of Palestinian nationalism. Hmmm…”
“The timing is horrific,” Nihad Awad, executive director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), told NBC News on Friday. “Families have been wiped out, hundreds of people dead, thousands injured in savage aggression against a captive population in Gaza.” “As Palestinians, the keffiyeh is extremely precious to us, and to see it taken in order to earn a profit is quite hurtful, especially at this time.”
Several messages left with Louis Vuitton representatives Thursday night and Friday morning requesting comment were not returned.
Dunkin’ dropped an ad campaign featuring then-pitchwoman Rachael Ray wearing a frayed black-and-white scarf in 2008. Some conservative activists were offended by the scarf’s use.