Categorized | Arts & Entertainment

Fashion week

As fashion month comes to a close, so does Black History Month. From Paris to New York and London to Milan, the fashion community relocates about every 10 days, from the end of January to the end of February, to see all the latest trends for the upcoming season. Each city houses different designers but the one constant is the models. Many designers have embraced a diverse approach to casting models for their runway shows, but unfortunately not all have caught up yet.

After going through different designer’s runway pictures, it is quite evident that the designers showing in Milan have the least diverse model lineups. British designer, Daks and Italian designer, Luisa Beccaria unfortunately did not have any models of color. Personally, I absolutely loved Luisa Beccaria’s collection for its pop of femininity in the pastels and the menswear aspect with the tweed, suits and ties sprinkled throughout her collection. However, Beccaria is not a newcomer to the fashion industry, and in the current global climate, there are no excuses for the lack of diversity.

However, is it even more culturally incompetent when designers such as Ermano Scervino and Gabrielle Conlangelo only have one or two models of colors on their runway of at least 20 models, if not more? Only having one or two models of color in their show could come off as a token effort to incorporate diversity but ultimately epically failing at it.

The fact of the matter is that the women who will ultimately end up wearing these designers’ clothes are neither all the same size nor do they come from the same ethnic background. With that in mind, it is very important for designers to have a diverse group of models to show that they are in support of all women and men and that their designs will look good on all.

Designers such as Missoni, who is largely popular, and Isa Arfen and Emilio de la Morena, who are not as big, are examples of designers who clearly took the time to select a diverse group of models for their individual runway shows. This is important to note because someone could try to justify the lack of diversity in the runway show because it’s a smaller and newer designer so they wouldn’t have enough time to think about the models. With the bigger, well-known designers, the lack of diversity could be justified by saying that the designer has other staff choose models for their show, taking the blame off of themselves individually.

Lack of diversity within fashion will most likely continue. However, many designers need to change because discrimination has never been and never will be in style. Fashion is an opportunity for people of all genders, races, sexual orientation and ages to express themselves and their personality through the way they dress.

Fashion is much more than pretty, silk fabric; it presents an opportunity to say something to the world, and thus designers have a much larger impact globally than they probably realize.

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