Saturday, November 6, 2010
Fashion History: Hugo Boss
I thought I'd start doing little pieces on fashion history here on the blog on famous people and fashion houses. First up is the infamous brand Hugo Boss and their notorious history which people often overlook. Hugo Boss is a German brand that was founded in 1924. Best known for it's scents and high end mens wear, Boss got his start as being the go-to-designer for the Nazis and Hitler himself. He was the supplier of all Nazi uniforms for the SS and the SA, Hitler youth and other Nazi organizations. In addition to his creative role, he was also a member of the Nazi party. He also used labour from Poland and other countries during the war to supply the demand for uniforms. After the war, the company and Boss were charged with forced labour and being sympathetic to the Nazi cause. Boss died in 1948 and the company went on to become a power house in the 80s and 90s, reinventing the look of the brand and breaking into high end men's wear and fragrance. Recently the company has received some backlash over production of clothes being moved from Ohio to Bulgaria and other European countries, as well as wage cuts for their employees who were already poorly compensated. Despite all the bad press, Hugo Boss is a very successful and beloved brand, heavily supported by celebs. Should we support Hugo Boss and let bygones be bygones or rebel against the immoral fashion house?