13 of the Biggest Fashion Week Scandals of All Time

Oh, how we love Fashion Month!

With successful Paris Fashion Week now officially in the books and New York Fashion Week in full swing, it’s hard not to get nostalgic as we gear up for what’s next as we move across the globe to London and Milan. We’re also reminded of the shows of fashion weeks past—and, of course, the epic scandals and controversies that rocked the fashion community and Hollywood’s biggest stars amidst the runway lights and camera flashes.

By now, fashion week followers know that the runways aren’t the only place to catch the drama and excitement. Sometimes, the most talked-about fashion week moments can unfold in the minutes before a show begins as the A-listers are taking their seats. And as last year’s NYFW taught us, after parties and award shows can also set the stage for some unexpected tension between the stylish high-profile attendees.

But that’s not to say that the fashion doesn’t always take center stage. Now that more brands are using their collections to showcase their stance on issues, fashion week has also become a place for voices and opinions to be heard.

From the surprising heated feuds and the controversial runway collections to the not-so-funny high-stake pranks and merciless shade between designers, relive some of the biggest fashion week scandals of all time below:

Kim Kardashian Robbed At Gunpoint

In October 2016, the Keeping Up With the Kardashians star was robbed at gunpoint inside her hotel during Paris Fashion Week. The men stole $10 million worth of jewelry, including the 20-carat emerald cut diamond ring her husband Kanye West had gifted her. Kim recalled the devastating moment on E! True Hollywood Story.

“That 10 minutes really changed my whole life,” she explained. “You’re just kind of bracing yourself for the moment that they’re gonna shoot you and kill you. They tied me up. They wrapped duct tape over my eyes and my mouth.”

Gigi Hadid’s Chanel Runway Crasher

Handling the situation like a pro, the 25-year-old model saved the day when a prankster jumped up onto the runway at the Chanel Paris Fashion Week show in October 2019. Doing her best to blend in with a tweed monochrome outfit, the intruder, who was later identified as YouTuber and comedian Marie Benoliel (a.k.a. Marie S’Infiltre), joined the line of models during the finale. It wasn’t until she crossed paths with Gigi that she was reprimanded. The runway star blocked Marie from getting away once security was notified and escorted her off the stage.

Model Slams “Straitjacket” in Gucci Fashion Show

At Gucci’s spring/summer 2020 fashion show in Milan, model Ayesha Tan Jones protested an outfit that resembled a “straitjacket” by walking down the runway with the words “mental health is not fashion” written on their hands.

“As an artist and model who has experienced my own struggles with mental health, as well as family members and loved ones who have been affected by depression, anxiety, bipolar and schizophrenia, it is hurtful and insensitive for a major fashion house such as Gucci to use this imagery as a concept for a fleeting fashion moment,” Ayesha stated on Instagram in a since-deleted post. “It is in bad taste for Gucci to use the imagery of strait jackets and outfits alluding to mental patients, while being rolled out on a conveyor belt as if a piece of factory meat. Presenting these struggles as props for selling clothes in today’s capitalist climate is vulgar, unimaginative and offensive to the millions of people around the world affected by these issues.”

Gucci responded by stating, “Uniforms, utilitarian clothes, normative dress, including straitjackets, were included in the #GucciSS20 fashion show as the most extreme version of a uniform dictated by society and those who control it. These clothes were a statement for the fashion show and will not be sold.”

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Marc Jacobs Vs. Rihanna

Rumors alleged the designer spitefully delayed the start of his NYFW 2019 show to make attendees late for Rihanna‘s Savage x Fenty lingerie presentation, which was slated immediately after his. Spectators claimed this delay was unheard of for the notoriously punctual runway pro. The reason for the alleged shade? Reports claimed it was because he’d lost the 7:30 p.m. slot, which had become his coveted spot for several seasons, to Rihanna.

Taking to Instagram, Marc put the rumors to rest, writing, “I sincerely apologize to anyone and everyone who was inconvenienced by my lateness at our Spring/Summer 2019 fashion show. For anyone interested, below is not a list of excuses but rather a list of facts. I fully understand people have plans, lives, commitments, flights, families to return to, etc and that I fully RESPECT.”

Nicki Minaj & Cardi B’s Harper’s Bazaar Fight

During the 2018 Harper’s Bazaar Icons Party, the two rappers were involved in a heated altercation after Nicki allegedly made a disparaging comment regarding Cardi’s parenting skills. In footage from the fight, the Hustlers star could be seen lunging and shouting at Nicki. It was also later revealed that she even hurled her shoe at the “MEGATRON” artist.

“It was so fast!” an eyewitness told E! News. “I heard someone screaming—everyone recognized Cardi’s voice. People either got out of the way or took out their phones and started filming. Nicki was surrounded by a bunch of guards and barely even looked at her. Next thing you know, shoes were flying and Cardi was on her way out.”

Jeremy Scott’s Political Statement

For his 2018 NYFW show, the designer made a bold statement by wearing a white tank top that read, “Tell your senator NO on Kavanaugh,” declaring himself against former president Donald Trump‘s nomination of Brett Kavanaugh for the Supreme Court. The controversial justice was later sworn into office in October 2018, but it marked a pivotal shift as more designers began using their runway slots to raise awareness for pertinent issues.

Claudio Cutugno Accused of Having Models Walk in Blackface

During a 2015 fashion show in Milan, Claudio Cutugno received backlash for having models walk down the runway in a full face of black makeup. The designer issued an apology and shared his intention—claiming, in part, that the “black makeup we decided to use was actually a translation” of a black veil.

“I am extremely sorry if many people thought this makeup would result offensive and also that I am racist, but that was not my intent,” part of the statement read. “I am extremely respectful of the Afro-American culture and extremely sorry for each type episode of racism. Furthermore, my inspiration was coming from a completely different idea, which has nothing to do with the theme of Afro-American culture. I would have never thought someone could have find the makeup offensive, otherwise I would have never used it.”

Justin Timberlake Pranked at Paris Fashion Week

As the *NSYNC alum made his way into the 2019 Louis Vuitton Paris Fashion Week show with his wife Jessica Biel, he became the target of another Vitalii Sediuk red carpet prank. The infamous prankster grabbed Justin’s foot and held on with a tight grip, ending up on the ground in dramatic fashion. After he caused quite the stir, security removed Vitalii from the scene and Justin and Jessica continued to enter the venue.

Thankfully, the “Man of the Woods” singer had a great sense of humor about the whole ordeal. On Instagram, he shared a picture of himself and Jessica from the event, writing, “Last night at @louisvuitton. Human anklet not included.”

Vitalii had also targeted Kim Kardashian at Balmain’s Paris Fashion Week show in 2014.

Burberry Slammed For Noose Hoodie

The British fashion house was under fire for a hoodie that had a rope noose replacing its drawstrings. Following the backlash, Burberry chief executive officer Marco Gobbetti issued a statement and removed the offensive piece from the collection.

“We are deeply sorry for the distress caused by one of the products that featured in our A/W 2019 runway collection,” he told CNN. “Though the design was inspired by the marine theme that ran throughout the collection, it was insensitive and we made a mistake.”

Members of the fashion community were quick to call out the brand. Among them was model Liz Kennedy, who slammed the fashion house via Instagram. “Suicide is not fashion,” Liz continued. “It is beyond me how you could let a look resembling a noose hanging from a neck out on the runway.”

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