Kim Kardashian Balenciaga controversy

A rundown of all the controversy between Balenciaga’s ‘disturbing’ advert and Kim Kardashian

Balenciaga has since admitted it should not have used children in its ad campaign

Fashion brand Balenciaga found itself in the middle of controversy following the release of its holiday campaign which involved a photoshoot with children holding teddy bears which were wearing BDSM style harnesses. Many called out the brand for its “creepy” advert as well as calling out Kim Kardashian, a frequent ambassador for Balenciaga, urging her to make a statement.

The Balenciaga adverts went live last week, intended to promote the brand’s holiday gift range, which included dog harnesses and reusable coffee cups. However in one of the photos, one girl is holding a leather strap attached to a teddy bear which had a chain and padlock around its neck. Another picture has documents from the Supreme Court related to child pornography cases.

Social media users have been condemning the fashion brand for “sexualising children”, with many getting rid of all their Balenciaga items.

Balenciaga issued an apology to its Instagram story, saying: “We sincerely apologise for any offence our holiday campaign may have caused. Our plush bear bags should not have been featured with children in this campaign. We have immediately removed the campaign from all platforms.” The fashion brand has since wiped its entire Instagram feed and has left the apology in its Instagram highlights.

Kim Kardashian Balenciaga controversy

via Instagram @balenciaga

Over the weekend fans continued to ask Kim Kardashian, who is a frequent collaborator with Balenciaga, to speak out over its holiday campaign. Six days after the Balenciaga scandal, the Kardashian sister issued a statement about the controversy.

In a tweet, she wrote: “I have been quiet for the past few days, not because I haven’t been disgusted and outraged by the recent Balenciaga campaigns, but because I wanted an opportunity to speak to their team to understand for myself how this could have happened. As a mother of four, I have been shaken by the disturbing images. The safety of children must be held with the highest regard and any attempts to normalise child abuse of any kind should have no place in our society – period.

“I appreciate Balenciaga’s removal of the campaigns and apology. In speaking with them, I believe they understand the seriousness of the issue and will take the necessary measures for this to never happen again. As for my future with Balenciaga, I am currently re-evaluating my relationship with the brand, basing it off their willingness to accept accountability for something that should have never happened to begin with – and the actions I am expecting to see them take to protect children.”

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Featured image credit via Instagram @kimkardashian.