Just his way of making amends
February 13, 2013 | 5:00am
Believe it or not, John Galliano’s costume is not a mark of disrespect.
The designer, who was disgraced for making Anti-Semitic remarks to a woman in a Paris café, donned this garb as a form of atonement.
He knows what the Hasidic dress means for the traditional community. The garments date back to the 18th century when the Orthodox movement was founded in Europe and is a tradition meant to both distinguish members out in the world and to show respect for others by dressing formally.
After two years in the fashion wilderness, Galliano was making a New York comeback with a residency at Oscar de la Renta who was showing his collection last night. Jewish leaders in the city were uneasy about this collaboration, with several telling The Post the designer hadn’t yet shown enough contrition for his comments.
As he stepped out before sundown, Galliano knew he had to make a statement. So he did what does best: he made the sidewalk his own catwalk. And what a fashion statement he made.
He wore a tall felt fedora, his long hair twisted into multiple ringlets resembling Hasidic ear locks, a long black coat over short pinstriped pants and boots akin to the garb that is traditional to members of the community.
Being Galliano, of course, he couldn’t resist a flourish: There were blue stockings and an ascot tied to his shirt.
In his own way, he was attempting to show sympathy and a connection with the very people he has offended.
Like other designers, Galliano draws inspiration from everything around him and routinely celebrates the beauty of the everyday.
This is the same fashion guru who, in 2000 and at the top of his game as creative director of Dior, conjured up the wildly controversial “homeless collection” — a line of haute couture inspired by the French vagrants he saw while running along the banks of the Seine.
Galliano has also always liked personal costumes; they reflect his current state of creative mind, just as his collections do. When he took his bow at past runway shows, he’s appeared alternately as a pirate, a silent film star, an astronaut, a tug boat captain.
His Hasidic look is not even his most original. Fellow Paris-based designer Jean Paul Gaultier debuted a collection called “Chic Rabbis” in 1993. (He was inspired when he drove by a group of rabbis leaving the New York Public Library. “I found them very beautiful, very elegant in their hats and their huge coats flapping in the wind,” Gaultier explained.)
For the flamboyant designer, this outfit is meant to be an attention grabber. He had a bright spotlight once and probably misses it. He’s used to courting controversy and this is the perfect way to put himself back in the conversation on his own terms.
Either that or he converted.
Beloved Bay Ridge… Beloved Bay Ridge bakery ‘Leske’s’…
Trending Now in Metro
Naked subway man dozes off between swigs of whiskey
Speed demon to NYPD: Catch me, if you can
NYC prosecutor arrested in beating of woman at bar