Schiaparelli causes outrage with couture collection by fake hunting trophies

The Paris haute couture season kicked off months ago with Daniel Roseberry’s Schiaparelli show. Inspired by Dante’s Inferno, a work of art about the search for enlightenment, the collection features several spectacular animal heads sewn onto garments. It depicts Dante’s journey to find his way to heaven while being stopped by three animals: a leopard, a lion and a she-wolf.

Image: Schiaparelli SS23 haute couture via Spotlight Launchmetrics

Front-row journalists captured Roseberry’s creativity and genius and shared it on Instagram to honor the designer. Model Irina Shayk wears a one-sleeved dress with a oversized lion’s head, appearing to be in the middle of a battle, over her chest and shoulder. An almost identical lion head dress is worn by reality star and beauty entrepreneur, Kylie Jenner, who is in the audience. The New York Times tweeted that Jenner arrived “with a girlfriend.”

Naomi Campbell wears a black faux fur coat. A wolf hangs over her shoulder. Recreating the animals is craftsmanship of a different level. The animals look lifelike. Roseberry described the details of how a base of hand-sculpted foam, wool and silk faux fur was made so lifelike, on Instagram. It marks his pride in nature.

An ode to nature creates a trammel

Diet Prada, the regular Instagram account known for its cancel culture moda operandicommented on the great quality of the collection and posted a selection of ‘best looks’.

This was followed by a frenzy on social media from users who responded that even the biggest fashion enthusiasts couldn’t predict. Sorry for the language: “We need to stop showing animals as luxury products,” said one user. Another wrote: “You don’t celebrate the glory of nature by wearing it like an ordinary trophy.” Others did not see the surrealism of it and said that many animal species have been ‘exterminated’ by man. They did not think such a representation on the catwalk was necessary.

Image: Schiaparelli SS23 haute couture via Spotlight Launchmetrics

Thousands of comments flooded Schiaparelli’s Instagram with the majority of users questioning the concept of honoring dead animals. However, fashion enthusiasts quickly explained the brand’s DNA and argued that any faux fur coat or accessory should be a target.

Back to 2018, when Gucci hosted a show with models wearing lifelike replicas of their heads. The eerie, lifelike figures were reminiscent of cephalophores and martyred saints who wore their own heads. It was controversial, but it didn’t get the same outrage as Roseberry’s animal heads.

Image: Gucci FW2018 via Spotlight Launchmetrics

Haute Couture pays tribute to craftsmanship. If it is to succeed, it must drive customers crazy enough to spend tens of thousands of euros on it. While Roseberry’s heads may have been a shockingly symbolic choice, they exemplify the house’s incredible techniques and talent. In addition, the heads dwarf the rest of the collection. This part of the collection also features a strong piece of craftsmanship, such as the cream-colored jackets with pearls or the dress with a sequin-dipped front.

Are Schiaparelli’s paying customers being put off by the social media frenzy? Probably not.

Image: Schiaparelli SS23 haute couture via Spotlight Launchmetrics

This article previously appeared on FashionUnited/COM and has been translated and edited by Sylvana Lijbaart.


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