There’s something going on in fashion right now and Miley Cyrus – in sparking an Instagram war with the outspoken designers behind Dolce & Gabbana – has just plonked herself rather unceremoniously into the middle of it.
Cyrus’ brother walked in Dolce & Gabbana’s men’s fashion show on the weekend, and while Cyrus was proud of her baby bro, she was very keen to point-out that she did not agree with the Italian fashion house’ politics. Namely, that they’ve really been the only major fashion label to endorse Melania Trump.
The singer, no stranger to controversy herself, took to Instagram to post a picture of her brother, Braison, doing his thing on the catwalk.
“It’s never been my little brother’s dream to be a model as HE is one of the most talented musicians my ears have ever been given the gift of hearing…BUT it is a Cyrus family trait to try everything once (within reason HA) and to embrace opportunities that encourage you to step out of your comfort zone!”
But it was this post script, presumably in connection to the brand’s Melania connection, that started things off:
“PS D&G, I STRONGLY disagree with your politics…but I do support your company’s effort to celebrate young artists & give them the platform to shine their light for all to see!”
Stefano Gabbana did not take the shade lightly, posting this comment on Cyrus’ post, “For your stupid comment never more work with him.”
He also posted a separate post on his own account with the caption: “We are Italian and we don’t care about politics and mostly neither about the American one! We make dresses and if you think about doing politics with a post it’s simply ignorant. We don’t need your posts or comments so next time please ignore us!! #boycottdolcegabbana.”
Which makes for an interesting stance when you consider the current vogue for fashion designers to make a statement on the current political climes.
See, fashion has been getting political. There’s been the designers who’ve worn their political belief systems on their sleeves – the slogan tees at Prabul Gurung and Public School, the Planned Parenthood buttons at Tory Burch and Zac Posen and Raf Simons’ subtle message at Calvin Klein during fashion week in February to the soundtrack of David Bowie’s This is Not America. Then there are the designers who refuse to dress Melania Trump – from Marc Jacobs to Phillip Lim.
Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana – designers who are also not new to causing controversy in everything from body image to IVF babies – however, are two designers who have not caught the fashion-as-political statement bug. Indeed, they appear to be entirely allergic to it. Or at least, they’ve sniffed the wind and decided to go a different direction.
For example, Gabbana in particular has taken great pleasure in sharing to his Instagram account whenever Melania wears one of their designs (including the $70,000 silk floral encrusted jacket that she wore recently in Italy that caused quite the consternation).
Pushback on the brand followed Gabbana’s gushing. And in response, the brand just this month released a range of t-shirts with the slogan #Boycott Dolce & Gabbana (available online for around $321) as a light trolling of the people who have called for shoppers to stop buying the brand.
Thing is, it’s not the first time that a boycott of Dolce & Gabbana has been called. Back in 2015 it was a similar story when the brand made distasteful comments about “synthetic babies.” As Eleanor Margolis wrote at the time in the New Statesman, “it strikes me as odd that we look to brands for any kind of moral integrity in the first place.”
And does it not feel that maybe we’re all being lightly trolled – because while fashion may reflect the world back to us, should we really be expecting an industry that operates both on a practical (we all need to get dressed) and fantasy level (but not all of us can wear dreamy, expensive couture) to be our moral compass? Did Miley Cyrus really need to throw her political views into a post about her brother walking in a catwalk show?
Perhaps everything is entwined now, I wear my slogan tee so therefore I am.
But it might all end up being too much of a shiny, well-cut distraction from the stuff that really matters. That is, what’s happening beyond the catwalk, and the silk appliqued blazers and the lip service t-shirts.
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