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Simplicity Patterns gets backlash after ‘Hidden Figures’ Facebook Post


Hidden Figures Movie Poster

Simplicity Patterns received some major backlash on social media today, after they made a Facebook post about the movie “Hidden Figures”, using a white model to promote their vintage patterns.

The “Hidden Figures” Movie is about the true story of three brilliant African American women who worked at NASA, Katherine Johnson (Taraji P. Henson), Dorothy Vaughan (Octavia Spencer) and Mary Jackson (Janelle Monáe), and served as the brains behind one of the greatest operations in history: the launch of astronaut John Glenn into orbit.

Simplicity Patterns tried to capitalized on the popular movie by promoting their vintage patterns, since the movie is set in the 1960s, but used a white model to do so and their Facebook followers were not having it. The post has since been deleted from their Facebook account but thanks to the magic of screen shots, we have a copy of it.


Screen shot courtesy of Gabriela Cernaz-Frantz

Some of the comments were about how this was a marketing fail and a missed opportunity by Simplicity Patterns because the movie was about the hidden significance of black women achieving great things during the civil rights era and Simplicity Patterns chose to celebrate that with a white model instead of African American model.

What do you guys think about this post by Simplicity Patterns? Should they have deleted the post or just responded to their followers concerns? Let me know what you guys think in the comments and let’s chat!.

By Farrah Estrella

Farrah Estrella is an award winning Latina, plus size, fashion, beauty and lifestyle blogger. She is also a fitness enthusiast and food lover. A native of the Dominican Republic, she has been the editor of the Estrella Fashion Report since 2012. Follow her on twitter at @FarrahEstrella and @EstrellaFReport

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  • Gabriela Cernas-Frantz

    January 8, 2017 at 9:39 pm

    Thank you for a great post! I would have preferred they just responded to the comments and apologized.

    1. Farrah Estrella

      January 8, 2017 at 10:13 pm

      Yeah, I was torn about that. I also felt like that should have responded to their followers but hopefully they will make a public statement soon.
      Thanks for the head up Gabi, I appreciate your comments.

  • Char G.

    January 8, 2017 at 9:55 pm

    Epic fail by Simplicity. Further evidence of how invisible black women are even when the story is about them.

    Somebody in creative missed an amazing opportunity. Most black women and girls made their own clothes in the 1960’s. I remember my mom and grandma using patterns to make my clothrs as well.

    Again, another slap in the face after the movie attempted to make known the gifts of these women.

    #Invisible #Typical BehaviorInTheAdvertisingSpace

    1. Farrah Estrella

      January 8, 2017 at 10:11 pm

      Thanks for your comment Char G., I agree that it was a big missed opportunity by the Simplicity team. My mom was one of those women who used yo make her own clothes but also because she was plus size and it was hard for her to find cute clothes.I appreciate your insight. Hugs!

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