Kim Kardashian issues response to Kimono controversy
today Jul 1, 2019
Kim Kardashian West has issued an apology statement after the unveiling of her shapewear brand Kimono Solutionwear sparked accusations of cultural appropriation.
The line of shapewear incorporates the reality TV star and entrepreneur’s name into the product, similar to her previous ventures, ‘Kimoji’ and 'KKW Beauty'. However, the line sparked controversy due to its shared name with the Japanese kimono, a traditional garment that dates back for centuries.
Many took to Twitter - where the #KimOhNo hashtag was born - to voice their dismay over the name choice, saying that it erased the kimono’s cultural significance and disrespected the deeply ceremonial Japanese garment. Outside of Twitter, the Mayor of Kyoto, Daisaku Kadokawa, issued an open letter to Kardashian West requesting that she reconsider the name.
Without responding to any specific accusation or request, Kardashian West - who has been on the receiving end of cultural appropriation accusations in the past - has chosen to address the backlash. In a statement given to The New York Times, the star said that the name is meant to be “a nod to the beauty and detail that goes into a garment.” She continued, “I understand and have deep respect for the significance of the kimono in Japanese culture.”
While Kardashian West said she has no plans “to design or release any garments that would in any way resemble or dishonor the traditional garment,” she did not say that she plans to change the name.
Set to debut in July, Kimono Solutionwear offers a range of classic shapewear pieces like bras, briefs, shorts and bodysuits. Photos of the line posted by Kardashian West on Twitter, feature pieces with unique cuts, designed to accommodate a variety of garments, including a one-legged bodysuit for dresses with a high slit on one leg.
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