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Hello Fabs ! I hope all is well and that you are all staying stylish as usual . New York Fashion Week is in full swing and I couldn’t be more ecstatic. These seasons bring about joy for fashion lovers near and far. As these shows and fashion weeks grow more in popularity a bigger issue has come to surface that has been plaguing this industry we love for years. The issue of Non Color or the lack of color on the runways has a voice. Bethann Hardison has launched her attack against fashions diversity problem. The fashion model now turned activist sent out four letters on the behalf of the Diversity Coalition to the 4 governing bodies of the fashion weeks. Letters went out to New York : Council of Fashion Designers of America, Paris (Fédération Française de la Couture), London (British Fashion Council) and Milan (Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana) accusing racism on the runways.
The letter states :
Eyes are on an industry that season after season watches design houses consistently use one or no models of color. No matter the intention, the result is racism. Not accepting another based on the color of their skin is clearly beyond ‘aesthetic’ when it is consistent with the designer’s brand. Whether it’s the decision of the designer, stylist or casting director, that decision to use basically all white models, reveals a trait that is unbecoming to modern society. It can no longer be accepted, nor confused by the use of the Asian model.
Hardison includes a list of “fashion houses guilty of this racist act” based on last season’s shows in each respective city. Donna Karan, Versace, Céline, Louis Vuitton, Alexander McQueen, Calvin Klein, BCBG, Prada and Chanel, just to name a few. Hardison states : “This way there is no hiding , If you say who , then nobody can say , “This has nothing to do with me .” “I’m trying to educate those with a careless attitude or [who] just don’t care. But you have to care. This is a responsibility to many.” she said
Response to the letter have started to come in and some are mixed :
The CFDA’s Steven Kolb told WWD that he discussed the letter with the group’s president, Diane von Furstenberg, and that they have pushed for and will continue to encourage diversity among their members. In fact, Kolb says the CFDA has sent two e-mails over the past two weeks urging its industry contacts and designers to be vigilant regarding the issue.
The British Fashion Council told Vogue UK that while it does not oversee model castings, it is “committed to model welfare and is more than happy to engage in tackling any issues regarding best practice and diversity at London Fashion Week.”
Didier Grumbach, president of Chambre Syndicale in France, deemed the letter’s call to action “unreasonable” and assured Vogue UK that the upcoming Paris Fashion Week will represent a wide variety of ethnicities. And last but not least, Mario Boselli of Camera said designers taking part in Milan Fashion Week have “complete freedom” in selecting their models. And while they encourage diversity they will not “impose” their power to achieve it.
“While some of them might be annoyed or uncomfortable, I have a great deal of respect for these designers,” Hardison said. “I think they are good people, and just not understanding what this is — what their practice has been.” “This is just round one. There’s more.”
Wow , me personally as a lover of the industry would love to see more diversity on our catwalks. After all fashion is diversity . To see the letters Bethann Hardison wrote can be viewed by following this link : http://balancediversity.com/
Until next time ……
fierce and luv