On Tuesday, New York Magazine's fashion vertical The Cut published a photo tour of Lilly Pulitzer's King of Prussia, Pennsylvania headquarters. The photos featured well-dressed employees juxtaposed with walls papered with sketches, bold patterns and heavily-saturated photography. And thinspiration cartoons drawn by an employee.
One cartoon reads, "Just another day of fat, white and hideous... You should probably just kill yourself." The next says, "Put it down, carb face."
While it isn't all that surprising that fashion industry professionals would be body-conscious, the cartoons are particularly aggressive pieces of fat-shaming, and Lilly Pulitzer really should have done a basic scan of their employees' work stations before a photographer had free reign in the office, since everything photographed represents the brand's fundamental ethos.
In a statement, spokesperson Jane Schoenborn apologized for the images: "These illustrations were the work of one individual and were posted in her personal work area. While we are an employer that does encourage people to decorate their own space, we are a female-dominated company and these images do not reflect our values. We apologize for any harm this may have caused."
Lilly Pulitzer was recently the subject of controversy when it made the decision to only sell plus-sizes of its line in collaboration with Target on the Internet.