Kim Kardashian West’s New Kimono Shapewear Line | ewmoda

Kim Kardashian West’s New Kimono Shapewear Line is Facing Backlash Over Cultural Insensitivity

Some have found the use of the traditional Japanese garment’s name in the brand, offensive

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30 June 2019

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Kim Kardashian West’s New Kimono Shapewear Line

All Credits: PA

Kim Kardashian West is expanding her empire with the launch of a new underwear and shapewear line.

She describes it as a range that “celebrates and enhances the shape and curves of women,” and it comes in nine shades, for sizes XXS to 4XL.

However, the name of the new range – Kimono – has caused outcry on social media.

The kimono is a traditional Japanese robe that features long wide sleeves and an accompanying sash, called an obi.

According to the Victoria & Albert museum, the term “kimono” was first used in the mid-19th century and means “the thing worn” – but as an outfit, it dates back even further. The pattern of the outfit is particularly important because it can convey personality, status and wealth.

Miss Japan Teruko Ikeda wears a traditional kimono in 1962
Traditional kimonos are still worn today – as seen on this woman in Tokyo

Some on social media are calling out reality TV star Kardashian West for disregarding Japanese culture, history and tradition.

Others have noted that there appears to be little or no connection between the items in Kardashian West’s shapewear and underwear line, and the traditional form of a kimono.

One Twitter user shared a few alternative brand names Kardashian West could try instead, that would still include her first name ‘Kim’, but could be a better fit for shapewear:

In light of the furore, many women are taking to social media to share pictures of themselves wearing traditional kimonos, using the hashtag #KimOhNo.

For many, kimonos are deeply personal and a connection to their culture and ancestry.

According to the BBC, Kardashian West trademarked the brand name in the US last year, and has also filed trademarks for “Kimono Body”, “Kimono Intimates” and “Kimono World”.