Dolce & Gabbana, the design duo that has defined Italian luxury for the last 30 years is now gaining a reputation for something less glamorous.
A series of critics have come out against some of the brand’s politics in recent months, culminating in singer Raury staging a full on protest while walking in their SS18 Men’s show in Pitti last week, revealing writing on his torso including ‘Give me freedom’, ‘Protest D&G’ and ‘I am not your scapegoat’. Raury was chosen by the designers to hit the runway as an ‘influencer’, a recurrent theme in recent seasons with an aim to diversify the brand’s audience, with questionable choices including UK reality TV stars…
While Raury graciously accepted the offer, the singer secretly wanted to use the stage to make a statement regarding the controversy surrounding the brand lately, including its tongue in cheek #BOYCOTT DOLCE & GABBANA campaign. The Boycott campaign, featuring a range of $245 t-shirts emblazoned with the slogan, is the duo’s choice of response to the huge backlash they have received for choosing to dress Melania Trump on a number of occasions. One of the most vocal critics came in the form of Miley Cyrus, who called out the designers in an Instagram post, stating that ‘I STRONGLY disagree with your politics’.
Raury wasn’t too happy about their casual use of the idea of protest. Speaking after his appearance at the show he said that the collection “completely makes a mockery of what ‘boycotting is’.” The brand have not yet commented on Raury’s outburst, but they have made it very clear that they don’t care about their politics, although he was swiftly escorted out of the show so perhaps they weren’t best pleased.
The criticism of D&G’s dodgy politics (let’s not forget their questionable comments on gay marriage and IVF) is a clear example of the importance placed on brands by consumers now to share in their values and ethical stance. Time will tell if people will actually #boycott Dolce & Gabbana.