Iman Chimes In on Vogue Italia’ s “Slave Earrings” and Next Business Venture

Iman Chimes In on Vogue Italia’ s “Slave Earrings” and Next Business Venture

The model-turned-accessory designer weighs in on the controversy and dishes on her new HSN offerings.

Published August 25, 2011

If you’ve ever watched Iman in action while judging Bravo’s The Fashion Show, you know the model is no-nonsense and will tell it like it is. So it’s no surprise that she spoke up rather candidly on the Italian Vogue controversy surrounding a feature that was headlined “Slave Earrings” after the publication apologized for “the inconvenience” and tried to blame the fiasco on a poor language translation.


"I didn't like it. Slave does not make it ethnic. Mind you, it's not lost in translation—the word slave, we know what it is. They might as well have called them 'n***** earrings.' For somebody like Franca Sozzani, who did that whole black issue for Vogue [to approve the headline], somebody should have said something," the Somali-born beauty told Fashionista. “Is it controversial? Yes. The naming of it, I don’t get it. I sometimes wonder in this age of reality shows has it become part of the language—the more controversy, the more [buzz] it creates.”


In happier news, Iman launched a new range for Home Shopping Network on August 24 after her first collection became the second–best selling fashion line in her years designing for the network.


The new offerings in her Platinum Collection are at a higher price point than the original (under $300 vs. under $100), but Iman is aiming for a new customer that she hopes will appreciate the bags, wallets, gloves and coats she’s cooked up in real leather, suede and pony hair. “This is about pulling in a new customer,” she said. “People will look at these pieces and say, “That’s HSN?” It’s still mass and it’s still affordable.”


See the “affordable luxury” items, which are currently on sale at

(Photo: Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images)

Written by BET-Staff


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