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Louis Vuitton ordered to pull misleading ads

Louis Vuitton has been ordered to pull an advert after the Advertising Standards Authority found that the luxury brand misled customers by suggesting its handbags were handmade.

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) upheld a complaint made against the national print ads, which featured a photograph of a woman using a needle and thread with text underneath which said: “The seamstress with linen thread and beeswax. A needle, linen thread, beeswax and infinite patience protect each overstitch from humidity and the passage of time.”

It added: “One could say that a Louis Vuitton bag is a collection of details. But with so much attention lavished on every one, should we only call them details?”

The ad was ruled to be misleading after three complainants challenged whether the ads implied that the bags were handmade. The ASA said the text implied that they had been hand stitched.

In a statement the ASA said: “We also considered that the image of a woman handcrafting a wallet using a basic manual tool in ad (b), alongside the claim “In everything from Louis Vuitton, there are elements that cannot be fully explained. What secret little gestures do our craftsmen discreetly pass on? How do we blend innate skill and inherent prowess” would be understood by consumers to mean that Louis Vuitton products were handcrafted, throughout most or all of the entire production process.”

Louis Vuitton said the images in the ads were a homage to the craftsmanship which was carried out every day by Louis Vuitton’s artisans. The brand also said that the ads did not seek to show all the tools that were used in their workshops and that hand sewing-machines were also used in the making of both the products featured in the ad.

The ASA said the ads must not appear again in their current form.

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