Isabel Marant accused of copying a traditional Mexican design

The French designer says she hopes to credit the  indigenous community herself

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Indy Lifestyle Online

Plagiarism has become the centre of debate in the fashion world with designers getting inspiration from each other and high-street labels making suspiciously similar pieces - Isabel Marant is the latest designer to find herself embroiled in the row.

The French house’s diffusion line, Isabel Marant Etoile, has been accused of copying the traditional dress of an indigenous community for pieces in her spring/summer 2015 collection.

According to The Guardian, the Mixe community in Santa Maria Tlahuitoltepec, Oaxaca released a statement that read: “Isabel Marant is committing a plagiarism because the Etoile spring/summer 2015 collection contains the graphical elements specific to the Tlahuitoltepec blouse, a design which has transcended borders, and is not a novel creation as is affirmed by the designer.”

The fashion house, however, insists that they’ve been open about the origin and inspiration for the design and hopes to credit the community.

“Before the district court of Paris, Isabel Marant is fighting to set the record straight: she has presented submissions which expressly point out that these designs come from the village of Santa Maria Tlahuitoltepec in the province of Oaxaca, in Mexico,“ said the fashion house. ”Moreover, Ms Isabel Marant, after tracing the true origin of these clothes, officially informed the court: 'For her part, Ms Isabel Marant does not claim to be the author of this tunic and these designs'.“

Marant had previously described the design as “tribal without being too literal”, but the indigenous community thought different, as they’re considering taking legal action against the luxury fashion house.

Marant’s cotton-linen dress featured similar embroidery to the one on the Mexican dress and retails at $182 (approx. £114), while the Mexican version retails at about $20 (approx. £12).

This is the second time that Marant has been accused of plagiarism. Earlier this year the designer was accused of copying Adidas’s Stan Smith iconic trainers, which were reportedly almost identical to her Bar low-tops, but retailing at three times the price.

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