This time for selling Chinese New Year shirts just months after Stefano called China 'ignorant dirty smelling mafia'
Dolce & Gabbana is being criticized for selling clothes with designs inspired the Chinese New Year — just months after designer Stefano Gabbana sparked outrage with racist comments about the Chinese.
The brand is currently offering ten menswear items on its website with 'Chinese New Year' prints featuring cartoon pigs and patches proclaiming it to be the Year of the Pig.
But critics are slamming the design duo for the attempt to make money of Chinese culture and appeal to Chinese customers so soon after they were forced to apologize for a racially-insensitive ad and Gabbana's racist comments.
The ten Chinese New Year items include T-shirts, hoodies, and jackets that range in price from $365 to $1,145.
Most feature prints of cartoon pigs wearing various outfits, and somewhere on each is a patch with the brand's name and the words '2019 Year of the Pig'.
Coming at another time, or another brand, the pieces may not have inspired a negative reaction — but context is everything.
And now many critics are outraged that the brand would make money off the holiday given their recent rocky relationship with China.
In December, the brand shared ads on social media that showed a Chinese model attempting unsuccessfully to eat Western foods like pizza and a large cannoli with chopsticks, a campaign that was called offensive and described as promoting unflattering stereotypes.
The clips were quickly deleted as backlash grew, and many Chinese customers called for a boycott of the brand.
Things only got worse when one British Instagram shared screengrabs of a conversation they had with Stefano Gabbana himself in Instagram DMs.
The grabs showed him defending the ads and charging that Chinese people eat dogs.
He whined about Chinese 'superiority' and called it a 'country of [poop emojis] before writing: 'China Ignorant Dirty Smelling Mafia.'
So when shoppers became aware of a product range designed to celebrate the Lunar New Year, many were left either scratching their heads and expressing pure outrage.
Diet Prada spotlighted one of the shirts on Instagram on Tuesday, running Gabbana's racist messages side-by-side with a product image.
'Um...Happy Lunar New Year?' the account wrote.
'That worm has some nerve,' complained one commenter. 'Either he thinks we all have short memories or he’s a fool.'
'What in the caucasity is going on here,' wrote another critic.
Others called it gross, disgusting, and trash, proclaiming that Gabbana is 'cancelled.'
Some wondered if the new pieces were part of a poorly-executed attempt to curry favor back with Chinese customers.
'It is not the first time they are kissing the Chinese a** so deliberately. The rooster year they made rooster T and sweatshirt, last year they made dog T shirts, this year again... so certainly next year mouse T shirts,' wrote one.
'At least the shirt is transparent about how they see their Chinese customers, fat pigs who are only worth their money. I’m surprised that last year for year of the dog they didn’t have a shirt with someone eating Fido on it,' wrote another.
The Chinese New Year items have likely been in the pipeline for the designer since well before the series of scandals, but the release is still quite surprising.
Dolce & Gabbana was initially quick to delete its ads back in November following the backlash.
'Crass. Racist. Condescending,' wrote one person of the videos.
'This is absolutely unacceptable! It has been three days and the content is not taken down,' wrote another.
'Dolce & Gabbana are racist and did not bother to learn the first thing about their Chinese customers. This ad is an insult to my culture,' said a third.
And Diet Prada wrote: '#DGlovesChina ? More like #DGdesperateforthatChineseRMB lol. In a bid to further appeal to luxury's covetable Chinese consumers, @dolcegabbana released some hella offensive 'instructional' videos on the usage of chopsticks.
'Pandering at it's finest, but taken up a notch by painting their target demographic as a tired and false stereotype of a people lacking refinement/culture to understand how to eat foreign foods and an over-the-top embellishment of cliché ambient music, comical pronunciations of foreign names/words, and Chinese subtitles (English added by us), which begs the question—who is this video actually for?
'It attempts to target China, but instead mocks them with a parodied vision of what modern China is not...a gag for amusement.'
But that wasn't all. In screengrabs allegedly showing a conversation on Instagram between Gabbana and a model named Michele Tranovo, the designer unleashed even more racist comments.
He called Tranovo stupid and had even worse insults for China in general.
Later, however, the designer claimed that the messages were not from him at all, insisting that he had been hacked.
And both Dolce & Gabbana delivered a video apology in Mandarin as well as posts apologizing for the ads.
'We are very sorry for any distress caused by these unauthorized posts, comments and direct messages. We have nothing but respect for China and the people of China,' a post on the main account read.
'I love China and the Chinese Culture,' Gabbana said on his Instagram. 'I'm so sorry for what happened.'
Due to calls for a boycott, though, they still cancelled a scheduled fashion show in Shanghai.