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Kim Kardashian to drop Kimono name from shapewear line following backlash

Once a standard of the Japanese wardrobe, the kimono is now often reserved for special occasions.

Kim Kardashian
Kim Kardashian
Image: Richard Shotwell via AP

TV AND SOCIAL media star Kim Kardashian has announced that she will change the name of her new shapewear line after she was hit with accusations of cultural appropriation. 

Kardashian unveiled the new Kimono line on Twitter last week, revealing she had been working for a year on the underwear to offer “solutions for women that actually work.”

The announcement garnered mixed reaction both at home and in Japan, with some offering their criticism on Twitter using the hashtag #KimOhNo.

Once a standard of the Japanese wardrobe, the kimono is now often reserved for special occasions, such as weddings and coming-of-age ceremonies, and is mostly worn by women.

The mayor of Japan’s ancient capital Kyoto was among those who asked Kardashian to consider renaming her shapewear line.

“Kimono is a traditional ethnic dress fostered in our rich nature and history,” Kyoto Mayor Daisaku Kadokawa wrote in a letter to her.

“(I) ask you to reconsider your decision of using the name Kimono in your trademark.”

As a result of the backlash, Kardashian announced on social media that she would change the name.

View this post on Instagram

Being an entrepreneur and my own boss has been one of the most rewarding challenges I’ve been blessed with in my life. What’s made it possible for me after all of these years has been the direct line of communication with my fans and the public. I am always listening, learning and growing - I so appreciate the passion and varied perspectives that people bring to me. When I announced the name of my shapewear line, I did so with the best intentions in mind. My brands and products are built with inclusivity and diversity at their core and after careful thought and consideration, I will be launching my Solutionwear brand under a new name. I will be in touch soon. Thank you for your understanding and support always.

A post shared by Kim Kardashian West (@kimkardashian) on

“When I announced the name of my shapewear line, I did so with the best intentions in mind,” Kardashian said.

She said that her brands and products are “built with inclusivity and diversity at their core”. 

“After careful thought and consideration, I will be launching my Solutionwear brand under a new name. I will be in touch soon,” she said. 

Explaining her decision to change the name, Kardashian said “being an entrepreneur and my own boss has been one of the most rewarding challenges I’ve been blessed with in my life.

“What’s made it possible for me after all of these years has been the direct line of communication with my fans and the public,” she said. “I am always listening, learning and growing – I so appreciate the passion and varied perspectives that people bring to me.”

Despite Kardashian’s U-turn, Japan’s Trade and Industry Minister Hiroshige Seko still announced that Tokyo would sent senior Patent Office staff to the US on 9 July to discuss the situation.

“The kimono is a culture our country has given to the world. In America as well, kimono has a high name recognition as being Japanese,” Seko told reporters in Tokyo.

“I hope the United States will take the appropriate screening measures, taking into account the spirit of the trademark system.”

Includes reporting by © – AFP 2019

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