Louis Vuitton Launches 'Jamaica-Inspired' Sweater, But Gets Colors Wrong and Criticism Rains

Brand crises do not discriminate, they can affect both large and small companies when things do not go as expected.

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February 24, 2021 3 min read

This article was translated from our Spanish edition using AI technologies. Errors may exist due to this process.

February has not been the best month for the Louis Vuitton brand. At the beginning of this, a sweater was launched that sought to honor Jamaica , however, the colors were not exactly those of the flag of the Caribbean country. Instead of using green, yellow and black, they changed the latter to red.

The criticisms were immediate on social networks. From people who do not explain how a luxury brand could not Google “flag of Jamaica” , to those who defended the design claiming that perhaps they were referring to Rastafarian culture.

Image: @ 21Savage, Instagram

Even personalities like Bob Marley’s daughter, Cedella, shared on her Instagram account what her father would have thought: “Bob says that’s the Ethiopian flag @LouisVuitton”, along with a photograph of the late singer.

The launch

When the 995-pound garment (more than 28,000 Mexican pesos, approximately) went on sale, it was named a “Jamaican striped sweatshirt.” In addition, the description read “Jumper with a striped design inspired by the national flag of the Caribbean island” , then the word ‘flag’ was changed to ‘cultural heritage’.

After the wave of comments, the brand decided to withdraw the product from its website (in which the link appears as a 404 error) and issued a statement to The Guardian by way of apology.

“We are deeply sorry for the error made in the description of our website and we have corrected it. The sweater belongs to the spring-summer 2021 season of the men’s collection, which is armed with the colors green, yellow and red, the colors of the Ethiopian flag , in honor of African independence, including the tribute to the culture of Ghana , where our designer Virgil Abloh comes from ”, declared the firm.

However, the damage is done and a brand crisis can be committed by any company, regardless of its size. Sometimes the bets that are thrown on the market are not the best or the most thought out, but they will be saved so as not to make a similar mistake again.

Image: Louis Vuitton

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