Gucci has discontinued selling an $890 sweater that social media users said resembled blackface and issued an apology.
The company said in a statement posted to Twitter that it “deeply apologizes for the offense caused by the wool balaclava jumper.”
The company said it has discontinued selling the sweater online and in stores and said they are “fully committed to increasing diversity throughout our organization and turning this incident into a powerful learning moment.”
The sweater drew outrage and frustration on Twitter.
Prada pulled products for similar reason last year:
“This is not the first time a fashion brand has been accused of using such imagery. Last year, luxury fashion house Prada said it withdrew products after some items displayed in a Manhattan storefront were seen as depicting blackface imagery,” CNN reported. “The products, part of Prada's Pradamalia line, were pulled after images surfaced of some merchandise depicting monkey-like figures with black faces and large red lips.”
Controversy comes amid blackface reckoning:
The sweater controversy, which kicked off Black History Month, comes as the entire state of Virginia deals with not one but two blackface scandals that may end their governor and attorney general’s career.
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam is facing calls to resign after a photo showing a man in blackface and another man in a KKK outfit from his medical school yearbook was published online. Northam initially said he was in the photo and apologized before denying he was in the photo but admitting he wore blackface another time as part of a Michael Jackson costume.
If Northam resigns, the next in line to replace him would be Lt. Gov. Justin Fairfax, but Fairfax has been accused by California professor Vanessa Tyson of sexual assault in an incident she said happened during the 2004 Democratic National Convention.
If Fairfax cannot replace Northam, the next person in the line of succession would be Attorney General Mark Herring.
On Wednesday, Herring admitted to black lawmakers that he too wore blackface in the 1980s as part of a costume intended to look like a rapper.
If all three of the top Democrats are unable to serve as governor, the Republican state House speaker would be next in the line of succession.