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The 5 best dissing of the fashion industry

In love as in war, there are no rules

The 5 best dissing of the fashion industry  In love as in war, there are no rules

The fashion industry loves to celebrate love and unity – but hate, rivalries and fights, real or imagined, are its true daily bread. Since couture as we know it was born, the often difficult personalities of designers find themselves fighting in clashes that in some cases become epic in their proportions. The great category of dissing in the fashion world began, ideally, that evening when, at a party in Paris, Coco Chanel pushed Elsa Schiapparelli against a candlestick, causing her to catch fire. But the history of fashion is literally full of fights, envies and bitter conflicts that are sometimes justified and sometimes completely avoidable. Here are the best. 

Bruno Pavlovsky vs. Anthony Vaccarello

This is the most recent fight on our list. After presenting Saint Laurent's FW21 collection, all focused on tweed suits and maxi-jewellery, echoing in fact certain classic elements of Chanel style, Bruno Pavlosky, president of Chanel, said: «How sad to see a brand like that parasite another brand. Saint Laurent is a magnificent brand. I think it’s such a shame not to write your own history and to have to sponge off someone else». Anthony Vaccarello or Saint Laurent have not responded yet, but there is no doubt that Pavlovsky's harsh comment did arouse anyone's ire. 

Virgil Abloh vs. Walter Van Beirendonck

Last summer's famous "teddy bear controversy." In the Louis Vuitton show SS21, held in Shanghai, some looks sent on the catwalk by Virgil Abloh seemed to be taken from those of the fashion shows of the Belgian Walter Van Beirendonck. The issue reopened the long-standing controversy over Abloh's creative processes, his "3% rule" and his originality as a designer. Abloh's response remained ambiguous, however, and he "exonerated himself" by showing how the puppets he sewed into jackets and coats were actually a reference to a 2005 Louis Vuitton collection. The issue quickly expanded into post-colonial discourse, although, just under a year later, the issue has been almost completely forgotten. But it's hard to forget Van Beirendonck's harsh words: «It’s very clear that Virgil Abloh is not a designer. He has no language of his own, no vision. He can’t create something of his own season after season and that is painful». 

Karl Lagerfeld vs. Yves Saint Laurent

A "historical" reflection of the dissing between Bruno Pavlovsky and Anthony Vaccarello can be found in the history of their respective brands: Yves Saint Laurent and Karl Lagerfeld, father of Chanel as we know today, but also of Fendi and Chloè, were rivals all their lives. It all started in '54 when during a fashion competition that would later become the Woolmark Prize, with a jury made of Pierre Balmain and Hubert de Givenchy, a 21-year-old Lagerfeld and an 18-year-old Yves clashed for the first position. Yves won that battle, but the war would have been much longer: the second turning point occurred in the 1970s when the two designers clashed again, this time for the love of Jacques de Bascher even though, according to Lagerfeld, the two were friends and it was Yves's partner, Pierre Bergè, who sowed discord. In the 1980s there was another clash of the two enemy-friends, with Lagerfeld who said in an interview that he had a serious Yves in the 1980s and that when he was young he was even more fun. 

Kanye West vs. Hedi Slimane

One of the most cryptic and hidden squeals in fashion history. In 2014, one of Kanye West's masterpieces, Yeezus, was released, containing a track called I Am God whose lyrics immediately made one French designer think with the line "Hurry up with my damn croissants!". Apparently, during Paris Fashion Week, Hedi Slimane would have told Kanye that if he came to the Saint Laurent FW13 show, he wouldn't be able to go to any other show. Kanye didn't like it, writing and recording the track right in Paris and using the same musicians Hedi used in the fashion shows. Later, Kanye revealed in an interview with Zane Lowe his dislike for Slimane: «Yeah, he's got some nice $5,000 jeans in there, it's some nice ones here and there, some good s**t here and there, but we are culture. […] You can’t say that you love music and then say that Kanye West can’t come to your show».  

Gianni & Donatella Versace vs. Giorgio Armani

Giorgio Armani often has a serene appearance in the somewhat boisterous world of Italian fashion. Yet it cannot be said that he has ever kept away from clashes and arrows. The most recent and famous dissing is the one with Dolce & Gabbana but the tastier one was the one with Gianni Versace, which dates back to '96. In short, Armani said, in an interview with an American magazine, that fashion was dead. Versace replied in very little nuanced tones: «At the beginning of each season, some fashion stylists suddenly discover that fashion is dead, confusing general conclusions perhaps with a personal problem. This time it is Giorgio Armani who is supporting him, just as he is opening two stores in New York and certainly no records. Strange logic, given that Armani is one of the great names of Made in Italy [...]. [Armani], at 62, is in the curious position of being routinely defined as the first designer in the world, although he is not, at the moment, particularly fashionable». In 2000 there was a revamp of the clash, this time with Donatella Versace, which she defined «rude and tasteless» an interview was given by Armani in America, in which the designer had attributed to Gianni Versace the phrase: «You dress church ladies, I dress sluts».