Givenchy Criticized for Controversial ‘Noose’ Necklace

The necklace made an appearance in the company's collection during Paris Fashion Week.

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Sleeve, Clothing, Apparel
Image via Vogue.com

Givenchy is under fire for an offensive accessory spotted during its Oct. 3, 2021, Paris Fashion Week runway show.

A necklace that looked like a noose appeared in its Spring 2022 ready-to-wear collection shown by creative director Matthew M. Williams.

The necklace (seen below) was worn by a runway model over a red ensemble and resembles a noose wrapped around the model’s neck. It can also be seen on Vogue.com.

Many criticized it for being insensitive, including an Instagram account called Diet Prada that focuses on fashion, which compared the Givenchy backlash to a similar controversy from 2019 when Burberry showcased a hoodie with a noose around its neck. The company later apologized and pulled the item from the collection. Liz Kennedy, the model who wore the hoodie and noose also criticized Burberry in a long Instagram post, adding, “Let’s not forget about the horrifying history of lynching either.” 

Wrote Diet Prada: “[TW: Suicide] You’d think the industry would’ve learned not to put things that resemble nooses around a model’s neck after the whole @Burberry noose hoodie debacle in 2019… This @givenchyofficial necklace that just came down the runway steers dangerously close to that same territory. Really makes you wonder how no one noticed, but alas… history repeats itself.”

Givenchy did not respond to requests for comment from numerous outlets, and instead told The Guardian: “The house does not have an official response on this.”

Williams collaborated with artist Josh Smith for this collection, telling Vogue that the pieces were “really, really worked and complex.” The collection was reviewed in the magazine in this way:

The creative dialogue between the two was expressed most eloquently in a series of Smith’s paintings—which Williams said portrayed the Grim Reaper—adapted into intricate knitwear and leather tops, some overlaid in filters of transparent fabrics printed with similar motifs, creating a kind of illusion within the styling. Those looks were ‘just’ streetwear, but they represented Williams’ passion for texture from its most compelling side. In a time when streetwear designers are becoming couturiers, Williams will do well to use his couture ateliers for poised experimentation like this.

Lisy Roxby, a representative of the U.K.-based suicide prevention charity Papyrus, told The Guardian: “Those who have a personal connection to suicide, whether this be their own experiences or having lost a loved one, can be triggered by such imagery and brands have a responsibility to ensure that they are not causing harm to their audience.”

If you or someone you know is struggling, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-8255, or use their web chat for support.


Sources:

“Givenchy Spring 2022 Ready-to-Wear Fashion Show.” Vogue, https://www.vogue.com/fashion-shows/spring-2022-ready-to-wear/givenchy/slideshow/collection. Accessed 4 Oct. 2021.

Madsen, Anders Christian. “Givenchy Spring 2022 Ready-to-Wear Collection.” Vogue, 3 Oct. 2021, https://www.vogue.com/fashion-shows/spring-2022-ready-to-wear/givenchy. Accessed 4 Oct. 2021.

“‘Who Signs off Offensive Items like This?’ Givenchy Criticised for ‘Noose Necklace.’” The Guardian, 4 Oct. 2021, https://www.theguardian.com/fashion/2021/oct/04/who-signs-off-blatantly-offensive-items-like-this-givenchy-called-out-for-noose-necklace. Accessed 4 Oct. 2021.