So far, it seems that the designers at New York fashion week have heard the cries of the socially conscious fashionistas, that there needs to be more diversity on the runway.
Erykah Badu, who styled the Pyer Moss show, intermingled protest signs, sound installation and fashion to show that fashion can be conscious. Kanye West leaned on the powers of the legendary Naomi Campbell and other models of color, and Chromat showed us, again, that couture comes in every shape and color.
This season, some fashion designers and their show producers seem to have realized that surprisingly, not everyone looks the same.
Last night, designer Zac Posen joined the dialogue. He cast his fall 2016 runway show with a majority of models of color. Not just the obligatory one or two models of color. A variety of women modeled his collection, from different heritages, and they created an orchestra of beauty. An idea like that.
Similar to his silhouettes and designs, Posen’s statement was classic and understated. Instead of standing on a soap box and announcing his decision to cast a racially diverse show to the fashion world, he decided to keep his comments focused on his inspiration for the collection.
On his Instagram Posen explained:
zacposen This collection was inspired by Ugandan Princess #ElizabethOfToro a royal who studied law at Oxford, modeled for Diana Vreeland at Vogue and represented her country at the United Nation. Therefor it was a dream to have Ugandan beauty #AamitoLagum close my fall 2016 collection.
The loudest he has been with his statement has been on his Instagram where he posted a photo of himself carrying a tote that says “Black Models Matter.” (The statement tote, created by Ashley B. Chew, made an appearance in September at NYFW and is a play on the hashtag, Black Lives Matter.)
Posen’s decision to cast these models of color, is absolutely life giving. However, what makes it the most refreshing is his tasteful way of not mentioning it at all. Almost, as if Posen is saying you shouldn’t have noticed anyway, this is the way it should be.