French designer Isabel Marant has made a name for herself in the world of fashion, owing to her eclectic style, which blends materials and ethnic influences together in her designs. These creations carry a price tag starting in the hundreds of dollars.
However, for the authorities and citizens of Santa María Tlahuitoltepec, a Mixe community in Mexico, they were more than just a source of inspiration. They accuse Marant of selling her creations as if they were her own take on the traditional dress of the territory.
“Tlahuitoltepec defiende su bordado; acusa de plagio a la francesa Isabel Marant”. #Oaxaca http://t.co/YU8QquhtVZ pic.twitter.com/sqGgFFZZTd
— Letra.Digital (@LetraDigitalMx) June 5, 2015
“Tlahuitoltepec defends its embroidery; accuses Frenchwoman Isabel Marant of plagiarism”.
The famous dressmaker sells this piece for $290, close to 4,500 Mexican pesos, while the price of the garment in the indigenous community is around 600 pesos ($40).
Marant is “hijacking a cultural heritage for commercial benefit, which puts indigenous communities at risk, as well as the originality of the fashion industry”, maintained the mayor, Erasmo Hernández González, who stated that they will be taking legal action.