Runway diversity for fashion week–any year, any city, any season–is a notorious problem in the fashion industry. Thin, white models reign supreme, with little signs of change. The Fall 2016 collections, however, have had a few head-turning collections where diverse casting was clearly taken into careful consideration. Well done and three cheers for these New York-based designers!
The Closet Feminist has been a longtime admirer of Zac Posen‘s dedicated efforts to being an ally in the fashion world.
Being an ally is a key word here. For example, in this mini-series we have noted to female designers Sophie Theallet and Chromat have also cast incredibly diverse shows this season. Yet, for some reason, Posen is the one who keeps on getting all the press for his efforts. It would have been cool if Posen could have taken his status as an ally a step further by recognizing Theallet and Chromat’s efforts alongside his own.
It just goes to show that while fashion claims to be about and for women, men still seem to get most of the credit in this industry. People fall all over Karl Lagerfeld, and barely a whisper is heard about Sarah Burton, suggesting women designers have to work twice, four times as hard to get a fraction of the credit and press. This bias is one of the reasons why here at The Closet Feminist, about ninety percent our columns and articles focus on the work of female designers only.
Of course, it is excellent that Posen cast predominantly black models for his Fall 2016 show. He still played it relatively safe though–both the Sophie Theallet and Chromat show took things a step further by casting ‘plus’ models as well.
Still, a job well done to Posen. His shows are always relatively more diverse than his peers, here’s hoping he continues to push catwalk diversity for many years to come.
All photos above from Vogue Runway here.