Every year during fashion month, there are stories that come out to the media regarding the lack of diverse models in runway shows, especially high end fashion shows.
This year was a bit different. London, Paris, and Milan all had a wide range of diverse models for each of their Fashion Week shows.
Last month at New York Fashion Week, designers were major hits for their Fall 2017 seasons, as every show or presentation included at least one model of color.
Not only has this year’s fashion industry improved on their diversity by race, but by sexuality, age, and even transgender visibility across the board.
According to The Fashion Spot’s seasonal post-fashion month diversity report, the London, Milan, and Paris runways each had more non-white models than any previous season.
For the Fall 2017 season as a whole, the percent of models of color to other models improved from 25.4 percent seen last spring to 27.9 percent.
This year, with shows like Gypsy Sport casting 87 percent models of color , Yeezy casting 74 percent, and Marc Jacobs casting 66 percent, models of color were present at some of the major shows in New York.
According to Fashionista, this season’s progress extended beyond racial diversity and into size and age, too: The Fashion Spot noted 30 plus-size model appearances this season, as compared to the 16 in Spring 2017 and six in Fall 2016. The number of models over 50 has also increased, with 21 women over 50 in Fall 2017, versus 13 last season, and 11 the season before.
Transgender and gender-nonconforming models — including Stav Strashko, Casil McArthur, and Vincent Beier — were less represented across New York, London, Milan, and Paris, with just 12 (from Spring 2017’s 10) cast this season.
“There were more women of all ages, sizes and ethnicities on the runways than ever before, including high visibility brands like Marc Jacobs and Dolce & Gabbana,” The Fashion Spot’s Editor-in-Chief Jennifer Davidson said in a release. “Despite the progress, it’s clear that white, thin, young, cisgender models are still the ideal for many designers. There’s still work to be done.”
The modeling experience has now become more open to models everywhere. You never know, you could be the next model to grace a major runway.