Donna Karan Shoots Ad Campaign In Haiti, Gets Called Racist

Critics are calling Donna Karan misguided and possibly racist for shooting her new spring ad campaign in Haiti, but using a white model as its star. In two ads, Victoria's Secret supermodel Adriana Lima appears alone, but in the third, pictured above, two Haitian teenagers pose in the background behind her. Unusually for a fashion campaign, the images all bear text identifying the location as Jacmel, Haiti, and directing viewers to the brand's web site, which has a whole section on Haiti. Karan has raised a lot of money for Haiti, both through her own charity and along with the Clinton Foundation, and she frequently uses interviews and public appearances to talk about the country's development needs and earthquake-recovery efforts, even now, after Haiti has sort of ceased to be the "fashionable" cause on all the rich people's lips. She also credits by name the Haitian artist, Philippe Dodard, whose work inspired her spring collection. Nonetheless, the juxtaposition of luxury clothing — Donna Karan sells $2,000 dresses — and the poorest country in the Western hemisphere is troubling, and perhaps undercuts the message Karan thinks she's sending. Karan would have done better to highlight whatever local involvement there was in the production of the shoot. And, sigh, why do the black people always have to be in the background? [Telegraph]


Donna Karan Shoots Ad Campaign In Haiti, Gets Called RacistLily Cole covers the January issue of Russian Vogue. [FGR]
Donna Karan Shoots Ad Campaign In Haiti, Gets Called RacistMert Alas and Marcus Piggott shot Gisele Bündchen and Ryan Barrett for Versace's spring campaign. [WWD]
Donna Karan Shoots Ad Campaign In Haiti, Gets Called RacistAs part of New York's ongoing series of "cinemagraphs" — gifs made not by clipping a TV show, but on purpose, with a camera — by Jamie Beck and Kevin Burg features J. Crew creative director Jenna Lyons sketching a dress. [The Cut]
Donna Karan Shoots Ad Campaign In Haiti, Gets Called RacistHere's one image from the new Balenciaga campaign. Steven Meisel shot four new faces — Juliane Grüner, Rosie Tapner and Kirstin Liljegren, and Laura Kampman, pictured — for the ads. [WWD]
  • Michael Kors rang the opening bell at the New York Stock Exchange yesterday, to celebrate his company's IPO. The stock offering was ten times over-subscribed, so it debuted at $20, just above the $17-19 estimate. In the day's trading, it fluctuated between $23.51 and $25.23 before closing at $24.20. That puts Michael Kors' market capitalization at $3.8 billion. "I'm feeling great," said Kors, who just sold about a third of his own stock holdings, for $117 million. [WWD]
  • Charlize Theron hates your Hello Kitty t-shirt. "I'm pretty amazed by Hello Kitty. I see so many women in their 30s walking around in Hello Kitty shit and nobody is concerned for them," says the actress. She was talking about her preparation for the role of Mavis in Young Adult. "It's the one iconic teenage symbol that seems okay for women in their 30s? The world seems to not have an issue with it." So she "said to the costume director, 'Get me some Hello Kitty T-shirts.' Those were my demands." While the mouthless kitty can be seen as a symbol of female infantilization, it is definitely not the only "iconic teenage symbol" that women in their 30s are encouraged to identify with. Seeing women as girls is sort of a society-wide problem, in fact. [Us]
  • Speaking of women and age, Helen Mirren topped a list of "style icons" for U.K. women over 50. Twiggy came in second, followed by Joanna Lumley, Lulu, and Judi Dench. Victoria Beckham was sixth, and at 37, she was the youngest person to make the top 20. [Daily Mail]
  • Leonardo DiCaprio may have found himself another model to date: Victoria's Secret favorite Erin Heatherington. [Fashionologie]
  • According to the Daily News, over 2500 online retailers are participating in "free shipping day" today, with guaranteed delivery by December 24th. [NYDN]
  • Here is an article about how Kate Middleton's eyebrows are wrong. (Kate Middleton's eyebrows are fine. It's her eyeliner we need to have a word with her about.) [Daily Mail]
  • Despite being four whole months pregnant, Julia Restoin Roitfeld has not turned into some kind of housebound milquetoast on full-time supervised bed rest. She's still going to parties and promoting the lingerie line she just launched with Kiki de Montparnasse. This seems to shock the conservative souls at the Post. [P6]
  • Restoin Roitfeld, for her part, says that she and her mother, Carine Roitfeld, are very different. "We both have a love of fashion," she says. "But besides wearing a lot of black, we dress completely differently." She says she and boyfriend of three years Robert Konjic have no plans to marry. "Having a baby was more on my wish list than getting married." [NYTimes]
  • Today in concern-trolling, Aliana Lohan is now officially "scary skinny" to the tabloids. Also, "frail," "pale," "rail-thin," and guilty of wearing an "ill-fitting romper." [Us]
  • According to this closet diary, even Dita Von Teese's pajamas are exquisite. [NYTimes]
  • French model Julia Frauche, 23, has been working since she was 18. But this September was her first season doing shows in New York. "I have been doing this job for five years and I was like, 'Okay, this is going to be my last chance. I'm going to try the shows and it's going to be the last time for me,'" she says. Then she booked Calvin Klein and Chanel, so, you know, it kinda worked out. [The Cut]
  • And now, a moment with Andrej Pejic, who Tweeted:

    Its [sic] kind of insane though, the world is at the brink of depression, military conflict and ecological collapse and me in a bra is global news.

    [@Andrej_Pejic]