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Graphic design can make or break the success of a product.
Or, in this case of a tote bag that appears to say, “My favorite color is Hilter,” it can really fucking shatter it.
On Sunday, a Twitter user from Vancouver noticed such a bag on fashion deals website BelleChic and decided that, nope, this bag does not say, “My favorite color is glitter.” Instead, it stans for one Adolf Hitler.
“My fav colour is also Hilter,” the tweeter shared, pointing out how the flawed, thick lettering in “glitter” made the bag prime pickings for white supremacists looking to flash their hate in style.
The designers chose a bad font...the word is glitter, but it looks like Hitler. https://t.co/4rtL6BxQmL— Deborah Healy (@DeborahHealy_) July 25, 2017
The tweet did spark its share of Holocaust puns, which, to be clear, are still completely inappropriate regardless of the bag’s ridiculous appearance.
They probably did… Anne Frankly I think they did it on purpose.— Ronnie B (@alt_horizon) July 24, 2017
Hitler is the new black pic.twitter.com/N3tPJTn2DD— Amelia (@Amelia_mcJ) July 24, 2017
Nein out of ten agree.— Economy Peasant (@EnigmaMister) July 24, 2017
But responders also brought up a great point: how in the hell did the company who created the bag, Quotable Life, manage to approve the bag, or did the designers create an anti-Semitic bag that seemingly flies under the radar on purpose?
The q. is: did they agree on a deliberately ambiguous design to create controversy or to strut their anti-semitic stuff and still hide?— Andre Sobolewski (@AndreSobolewski) July 23, 2017
One day after the revelation, BelleChic pulled the bag and issued an apology on Twitter, revealing a new design that unambiguously cheers for “glitter” instead of “Hitler.” Quotable Life, the merchandise company responsible for creating the bag, has also updated the design.
According to the cached page of the website, more than 70 bags were sold before the “Hitler”-looking product was pulled, meaning that several people may one day get stopped on the street by folks thinking their favorite color is that of a Nazi.
However, the new bag hasn’t stopped a few particular (read: ill-intentioned) people from asking if the old bag is still being shopped around.
Matt Molen, Chief Marketing Officer for BelleChic, responded to the controversy in a statement to Allure.
“While I realize that most of the social media buzz and commentary has been tongue-in cheek, the type of abhorrent sentiment conveyed as part of the misinterpretation absolutely does not align with our company values, nor is it something we would ever want to encourage or support,” Molten said.
Quoteable Life did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Update 1:49pm CT: A representative from Quotable Life sent the Daily Dot the following statement. The company said the bag had been designed three years prior, and that it will donate 300 percent of the funds from the sales of the discontinued tote bags to the National Holocaust Museum.
Samantha Grasso is a former IRL staff writer for the Daily Dot with a reporting emphasis on immigration. Her work has appeared on Los Angeles Magazine, Death And Taxes, Revelist, Texts From Last Night, Austin Monthly, and she has previously contributed to Texas Monthly.