Pierre Bergé lashed out at designers for creating "Islamic" clothing and headscarves on Wednesday, accusing them of taking part in the "enslavement of women." The French businessman, partner of the late fashion legend Yves Saint Laurent, took aim at the wave of big fashion chains that have followed the Italian designers behind Dolce & Gabbana in catering specifically to the Muslim market. "Renounce the money and have some principles," Bergé declared in an interview on Wednesday.
"I am scandalised," he told Europe 1 French radio. "Creators should have nothing to do with Islamic fashion. Designers are there to make women more beautiful, to give them their freedom, not to collaborate with this dictatorship which imposes this abominable thing by which we hide women and make them live a hidden life."
Earlier this year Dolce & Gabbana became one of the first major western brand to aim at capturing a corner of the Islamic fashion market, which is estimated to be worth $260 billion (230 billion euros), with its Abaya range. It included 14 abayas or ankle-length dresses, which it matched with embroidered headscarves and hijabs.