By: Twitter Buttons

Wednesday, 1 October 2008

Walk Biatches!!

With the fashion weeks taking place, London, Milan, Paris, I was sooooooooooooooooooooo happy to see new Nubian model Jourdan Dunn in the papers almost every day. She's definitly doing her thing.

How many of you were impressed by Vogue Italia doing that much talked about 'black edition'? There has been much debate: gimmick vs making a real stance? Personally I believe that anything that placed the issue of the lack of colour in the fashion industry in the mainstream arena is a good thing. It got people talking about an issue that has been glossed over for years.

But has it really changed anything....

Take Milan Fashion week, Jourdan was the ONLY black model to walk Prada! I mean, this is an Italian label. Vogue is considered to be such an important publication, you would think that some of its great influence would filter down to these prestigious fashion houses. This colourless trend was also reflected in other shows - Gucci, Fendi, Versace and Missoni - 1 model in each of those and none in Giorgio Armani.

So did Vogue Italia just rip us all off?

This whole colour thing does get to me because it seems that even though this has been an issue for a while, its like pulling teeth to get some change up in here. Also aside from Alek Wek are there any REAL black high fashion models. I mean the kind with a 'black' nose instead of a European one, natural hair instead of long straight pony hair a la Naomi. By pushing to the forefront the most European looking black models are the fashion houses just ticking the box to say "there you go, there's your black girl, now leave me alone?"

Will there ever be genuine change? Or do we just have to accept that 'high fashion' requires a certain look, as does does commercial modelling or glamour modelling. Maybe women of colour fair better in specific areas of modelling only. You'll find a nice Asian model in the Next Catalogue. Play to your strengths and be a video girl is what some might say - oooh controversial. These thoughts are not my own, just putting it out there. (Nice recovery Shants). What I do think is that things will never change until the institutional barriers are broken. When the Pradas, Versaces, Guccis are making millions doing what they do, where is the incentive to break the cycle? Do you remember when the whole size zero debate happened and they banned models under a certain BMI index.....and then forgot all about it after press coverage died a little. It is all too easy to sweep these things under the carpet so I welcome campaigns such as Black But Invisible by Mahagony Model Management who are pushing to keep the issue in the limelight. But what we need are the journalists, the casting agents, even people in corporate positions who use models as spokespeople and endorsers - here is where people can make a difference to the fashion industry as a whole.

At the moment, there is the mentality that there can only be one at a time...Tyra Banks(God bless her soul - I love Tyra) talks about how back in the day she was labelled as "the one to challenge Naomi for the supermodel crown". They never pitted her up against Cindi Crawford or Linda Evangelista. It's still still happening in 2008, there are always pictures of Jourdan up against Chanel Iman, another Nubian newcomer, its crazy, but its the way it is for now until we show them that black is not only beautiful, but its profitable too.

"Walk like you're broke and the rent is due tomorrow"
Miss Jay, ANTM



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