The wares feature prescription bottle phone cases, prescription pill purses, pill-covered print dresses and T-shirts, among other items.
Jeremy Scott’s tongue-in-cheek collection, which ranges from $600 to $1,000, prompted critics to say the imagery glamorizes prescription drug abuse and counters efforts to slow down startling numbers of overdose-related deaths that continue to climb in the U.S.
In a statement to Fox News, Moschino representatives said the collection was inspired by a literal play on the word “capsule.”
“There was never any intent to promote prescription drug abuse,” the statement read, adding. “We are disheartened to hear that there has been a misunderstanding of the underlying theme of the collection.”
A petition launched on Change.org by Randy Anderson, a Minneapolis drug counselor, is urging the fashion label and Saks Fifth Avenue, as well as other retailers, to nix the line. “These accessory items you are choosing to market and sell to the public for profit, which include the Pill Bottle Shoulder Bag and Capsule Crossbody Bag, will most likely promote more drug use,” Anderson wrote. “Do you have any idea of the message your company is sending to those who have suffered the loss of a loved one due to a drug overdose?”
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 47,055 people died of an accidental drug overdose in 2014, Anderson cited. Overdoses on prescription opioids such as OxyContin and Vicodin accounted for more than 14,000 American deaths that same year, Stat New reports.
Moschino’s cheeky prescription drug-inspired gear references “the packaging and instructional inserts of over-the-counter medication, ‘prescribing’ its fans a colorful selection of garments and accessories that reflect Jeremy Scott’s fun, provocative language,” according to the brand’s website.