A Winning Year for Inclusivity and Diversity in Fashion
Fashion is finally figuring out diversity. It seems as though the demands from critics and people of color have come to some avail. In recent fashion month shows, models of all shapes, sizes and ethnicities can be seen strutting down the runway with fewer claims of appropriation. I take my hat off to designers and say that the fashion industry has made significant strides to maintain diversity, inclusion, and efforts to remain cognizant about the power of representation.
This year is off to a winning start for people of color and women in fashion. Below are a few groundbreaking headlines that deserve some recognition.
1. Naomi Campbell Named CFDA’s 2018 Fashion Icon
The Council of Fashion Designers of America announced that Campbell will be the 2018 recipient of its Fashion Icon Award, to be presented on June 4 at the CFDA Awards at the Brooklyn Museum. Naomi Campbell is no stranger to the word icon. The England-born native made history as the first Black model to be on the cover of French Vogue and Time. Naomi’s exotic walk and charisma landed her many gigs, making her one of the most in-demand models in the world. Over the course of her 30-year career, she has acquired many titles, a few being activist, television star, and entrepreneur. Campbell is a cemented force in fashion whose merit is indisputable.
2. Virgil Abloh is Louis Vuitton’s New Menswear Artistic Director
Louis Vuitton announced that Virgil Abloh is its new artistic director of menswear, replacing Kim Jones, who exited after the Fall 2018 collection in January. The Off-White founder is the first African-American to head design at the LVMH-owned house. Abloh was born in Chicago and later earned his Master of Architecture at the Illinois Institute of Technology. Since launching Off-White six years ago, Abloh has continued to redefine luxury by crafting collections that effortlessly merge streetwear and high fashion. Abloh’s move to LVMH is a major step towards more diversity in the industry. His first collection for Louis Vuitton will debut during Paris Men’s Fashion Week in June.
3. Nike Launches New Sneaker Boutique for Women Called “Unlaced”
Nike is finally recognizing the universality of sneaker culture. Following the high spirits of those celebrating Nike’s Air Max Day, the company unveiled the digital launch of Nike Unlaced. Unlaced is a destination where women can find a curated selection of footwear, inclusive sizing, high-performance styles, and exciting collaborations such as Virgil Abloh x Nike The Ten releases. European stylist and i-D Senior Editor, Julia Sarr-Jamois, has worked closely with Nike to select sneakers that will filter in for the next six weeks on Unlaced’s digital shop. Nike is making a grand effort to challenge the status quo by pushing new female voices into a predominately male community. Nike Unlaced is available for online shopping, and the brick-and-mortar retail experience will launch this summer.