It’s fair to say that Gigi Hadid has single-handedly put the Tommy Hilfiger brand back in the ‘cool’ books, but the back-story to this year’s winning Tommy x Gigi collaboration is far from charming.
Indeed, we – along with many Twitter users – are kind of fuming over how the collaboration came to be.
It all started when Gigi walked the Tommy Hilfiger catwalk at New York Fashion Week in 2015. Gigi was placed in a poncho that covered up most of her body, but she still looked totally amazing.
In an interview with Yahoo! Style, label founder Hilfiger explained that the fallout from Gigi’s appearance on the runway gave the brand some food for thought.
“Our casting director said, ‘She doesn’t really fit because, you know, she’s not quite as tall as the other girls, she’s not quite as thin’. They put a red, white, and blue poncho on her that covered a lot of her body, unfortunately,” he explained.
The move was applauded, however, proving that Gigi could potentially pull in mega-bucks for the brand.
“It received millions of hits, so I said, you know, why don’t we ask her to design a line with us?” Hilfiger added.
Wow; and there we were thinking that they just wanted to put one of their prized pieces on the model-of-the-moment.
Needless to say, there have been some strong reactions to the revelation on Twitter, with many criticising the brand’s casting director for the poncho move.
— Perez (@ThePerezHilton) November 2, 2016
— Alyssa Vingan Klein (@alyssavingan) November 2, 2016
We've all known the modelling industry is cut-throat but this takes the cake. Pun intended https://t.co/gCa3ig33kf
— (@usavedmeharold) November 2, 2016
“This is so mind-blowingly awful and dumb to me,” replied one tweeter, while another lamented our ‘sick, sad world’.
Updated 3rd November 2016:
Issuing a statement in response to the backlash, Tommy Hilfiger said that his words were taken out of context and that he is proud to have Gigi as his brand's ambassador, describing her as "bright, confident and always optimistic."
"Gigi is truly the definition of a ‘Tommy Girl’ – her magnetic personality is bright, confident and always optimistic," he said.
"I've known her for many years, and am extremely proud to have her as the ambassador of my brand and as a collaborator of our collections."
"Any statement to the contrary is completely false. The headline from the interview with Yahoo was misleading and has since been corrected."