Designer Philipp Plein apologises for 'fat-shaming' writer who criticised his show

Designer Philipp plan has come under fire for ‘fat-shaming’ a fashion writer [Photo: Getty]

Designer Philipp Plein is facing backlash for fat-shaming a fashion writer after she gave a negative review of his NYFW show.

Alexandra Mondalek published a critique of Plein’s recent New York Fashion Week show on Fashionista, where she described the show experience and his collection as “tragic” “disappointing” and “disorganised.”

According to Mondalek, of the various issues she had with the show, the first was a lack of appearance by Kanye West – who Plein had reportedly been scammed into believed would be performing.

Mondalek also described the designer’s “dinner show” as “disorganised” explaining that there was “seating for, at most, two-thirds of the guests.”

When it comes to the fashion itself, Mondalek described the collection as a “regurgitated tasting of other designers’ hits from recent seasons past.”

By way of response to her critique, the designer shared a series of, now deleted, Instagram stories, which seemed to criticise the writer’s appearance and question her trustworthiness.

“I like it when journalists are objective and trustworthy…especially if they write bad after a fashion show just because they did not get paid with food…,” Plein wrote on the series of posts.

The designer then sourced and posted an old picture of Mondalek, which she claims was when she was 25 lbs heavier, and captioned it, “Next time I’ll make sure that you will get enough food! I promise…”

Mondalek responded by sharing screenshots of the designer’s stories to her Twitter account, along with an explanation about what had happened.

“Oh my god I’m getting fat shamed by Philipp Plein on Instagram,” she started her thread. 

“And he confused me for Amanda Bynes? Like congrats dude you found an awful photo of me on BFA but your collection still sucks,” she wrote. 

“I hope you’re proud of yourself for fat-shaming someone who struggles with body image anyway,” she continued her thread. 

Mondalek also criticised the designer’s unsavoury response in an article for InStyle.

“Rather than begin a discourse with me, the fashion writer, about my review, Plein came after me, the person,” she wrote.

“In an unexpected and cruel social media blitz, Plein posted images of me (this really isn’t about whether I looked good or not, but I’m not fond of the ones he found) with the Spongebob Squarepants cartoon character Patrick Star shovelling hamburgers in his face.

“What is clear is the he thinks weight, and eating, are things women should be ashamed of. It was bizarre, mean, and incredibly unprofessional,” she continued.

Yahoo UK contacted Philipp Plein who declined to comment but did point out that the designer had posted a public apology.

“I’m reaching out to you because I really wanted to make a few things clear,” he said in a series of Instagram stories.

“I got really upset when I saw your article and your tweets,” he continued.

“I feel very upset and hurt if someone attacks me in such an aggressive and bad way.”

The designer went on to say that it made him feel very emotional and so he responded in an emotional way.

“I don’t think you realise how much work and energy I put into that show,” he continued. “I felt your article was not based on facts but rather emotion and I responded that way.

He then said he’d made a mistake by putting up a picture of Mondalek, but that the reference to food was nothing to do with her weight.

“You were talking about food in your article. If you were talking about chairs, I would have posted chairs. I have no problem with overweight [people].”

Plein concluded by inviting Mondalek to his next show where he promises to make sure she will be accommodated.

It’s not clear whether or not Mondalek had seen his apology before writing her own response on InStyle, but she concluded the matter by issuing the message that though body positivity may have been dented by the events, the movement will ultimately continue to grow.

“Fashion has come a long way in terms of promoting body positivity and changing beauty standards, and I hardly think individual designers behaving badly are worth allowing us to regress,” she wrote.

“As the industry continues working toward being a more inclusive and celebratory space, it is they who will be left behind.”

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