Fashion controversy: The Crimson luxe campaign

What’s a fashion industry without some controversy now and then. The latest one doing rounds is the ‘Crimson Luxe campaign’ in collaboration with the super designer-duo ‘Saira Shakira’. So it all began when these particular images from their catalogue surfaced on the social media:



Gunfires opened and the poor Crimson team was backlashed with accusations of glamourising ‘street harassment’ and ‘rape culture’. Sanam Saeed amidst a few male (models) staring at her and there…you’ve got yourself a controversy!

Steering myself clear of controversies almost always, this time I thought I’d take a dip in ‘responsible journalism’ (if thats what you call it) as well. So here’s my little part:

I’d say ‘yes’ although these pictures are a very true depiction of our society but ‘no’ it’s just a little bad in taste and not necessarily required for this campaign. I mean in all honestly why would you want to ‘turn heads’ while posing in front of a ‘fruit cart’. Sanam clearly looks out of place, in all ways (face expressions included).

We all get stared at, regardless of what gender. Ladies will oogle at handsome men and men..well it kinda comes natural to them to gawk at dolled up women. Now be those men..drivers, waiters, spot boys, sweepers, shopkeepers or whatsoever, yes they will stare. And honestly you don’t have to be wearing “Saira Shakira’ for that.

Point is, this is the reality of every society. Western or eastern, it’s a naturally occurring phenomena. In fact the hardest truth is if a ‘gora’ guy flirts or stares we think it’s ‘cute’ and if God forbid it’s a desi boy then oh no! here comes street ‘harassment’. But yes, hypocrisy aside, you don’t need to be liberal minded or conservative to understand this image. It’s simply done in bad taste and thats about it. And by bad taste I mean; if only the guys were more properly dressed up and with lesser sleazy expressions or maybe they could have had cameras and acted as paparazzi etc etc million ways of correction obviously. But just because of this particular image you cant ignore how beautiful the rest of the shoot is.


The next up allegation was it’s similarity with the Dolce and Gabbana Fall 2012 (menswear collection) campaign and how we are tolerant if they do it and not when we do it. I’d need to write a whole new blog post on how ridiculous that very acquisition is.We aren’t even an inch up their ladder, let alone comparing our campaigns with them.

Dolce and Gabbana are the Gods of theatrical campaigns. Their campaigns envision a whole mood, a story or some happening event. The image in question is the following:


Even a layman can tell that this image is in a complete different context. It’s a menswear ad and it’s bound to have more focal on men. And clearly, you can tell that they’re all genuinely having fun and MUTUAL enjoyment. The men aren’t gaping or ‘checking her out’. In fact if you have a look at the rest of the campaign you will see how it’s all set-up against the backdrop of an Italian wedding. Friends and family all celebrating some hardcore Italian traditions. So this image won’t be conceived obscene any way since it shows friends and family and not some random passer-bys.. street chasing a dressed up doll.


Coming back to Crimson, I wish Saira and Shakira all the best for their debut textiles collection. They are a bunch of hard-working females and baseless allegations like these shouldn’t set them back. Although Saira has publicly apologized  on the behalf of her team, we should accept it and move.on.please.




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