Fashion brand apologizes for outfit resembling concentration camp outfits

European brand Loewe says it was "never our intention" to make reference to "to one of the most odious moments in the history of mankind."
Loewe has apologized for selling an outfit that resembled a concentration camp uniform.
Spanish clothing brand Loewe has apologized for selling an outfit that resembled a concentration camp uniform.ssense.com

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/ Source: TODAY
By Chrissy Callahan

A European clothing brand is facing major backlash after many shoppers say it turned the Holocaust into a fashion statement.

Loewe, a Spanish fashion brand, recently released a capsule collection inspired by British potter and novelist William De Morgan. While Loewe designer Jonathan Anderson described the collection as "an odd type of fantasy" and "like an early Harry Potter," many shoppers believe it's more disturbing than whimsical.

Instagram account Diet Prada recently pointed out that one outfit in the collection, a striped shirt and pants, closely resembled concentration camp uniforms from the Holocaust.

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"Unable to see anything but concentration camp uniforms in this $1,840 ensemble from @loewe's William De Morgan capsule, a collection meant to 'capture a freedom of imagination.' But with the particular stripe proportions and layout, uniform-style garments, and prominent chest patches, there’s not actually much left to the imagination when the resulting look is so uncannily disturbing," the industry watchdog wrote.

The outfit brought back many painful memories for some commenters.

"This gave me a chill. My grandparents were in a camp and I just can't look on the similarity of the products. They should be ashamed," read one comment.

Most agreed on one thing: The outfit was totally tasteless.

"There's bad, then there's BAD BAD. This is the latter," one person wrote, while another commented, "Unbelievable why anyone would ever try to emulate this look, and not see the horrific parallels. This is truly a design that needs to be left alone forever, it's never going to be ok."

The outfit has since been removed from Loewe's website, but it is still available on e-commerce site Ssense.

TODAY Style reached out to Loewe for comment and received the following statement:

"It was brought to our attention that one of our looks featured in a magazine and part of our Arts and Crafts ceramicist William De Morgan collaboration could be misconstrued as referring to one of the most odious moments in the history of mankind. It was absolutely never our intention and we apologise to anyone who might feel we were insensitive to sacred memories."

In recent years, several other clothing brands have also received backlash for selling items that evoked memories of the Holocaust. Spanish retailer Zara stopped selling a striped children's T-shirt in 2014 after shoppers said it resembled concentration camp uniforms.

In 2015, Urban Outfitters found itself mired in controversy when shoppers said a tapestry that had black and white stripes and a small pink triangle resembled clothing that gay prisoners were forced to wear during the Holocaust.