First Skirts, Now Paintings: Dior Faces More Copycat Accusations In China

Update published August 4, 2022

Dior is facing cultural appropriation accusations in China once again. Its Fall 2022 products featuring what the house calls “Jardin d’Hiver” patterns have been called out by netizens for copying traditional Chinese painting styles. According to the product description on Dior’s official website, the collection is “a poetic and exotic representation of Monsieur Dior’s wall murals.” 

Netizens point out that Dior’s Jardin d’Hiver motif resembles traditional Chinese paintings of flowers and birds. Photo: Xiaohongshu

Following the recent scandal over the plagiarism of traditional Chinese horse face skirts — to which the French luxury titan has yet to issue a formal response — this latest controversy further bruises Dior’s image in the mainland. The hashtag #NewDiorProductsAllegedlyCopyingChineseFlowerandBirdPatterns currently has 3.5 million views on Weibo. But worse than that, angered users are rushing to comment under Dior’s newest posts on the platform as well as Instagram asking the brand to apologize. 

Strong sentiment for traditional Chinese wear has even manifested offline. Amid the ongoing backlash against Dior’s horse face skirt, around 50 Chinese students protested outside of the Paris Dior store in July, with the Weibo hashtag #ChineseStudentsinParisProtestAgainstDiorCulturalAppropriation gathering over 440 million cumulative views. 

Clearly, keeping silent and trying to go unnoticed isn’t working well for the house. 

Published July 18, 2022

What Happened: Dior’s latest drop has caught the attention of Chinese netizens — for all the wrong reasons. Over the weekend, the French luxury house was accused of cultural appropriation by netizens and official media outlets such as Global Times and People’s Daily for launching a mid-length pleated skirt in its Fall 2022 collection that mimics the design of a traditional Chinese horse face skirt.

Horse face skirt, or mǎmiànqún​​ in Mandarin, is a Chinese garment that dates back to the Song dynasty. It

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