A model walks down the runway, and she wows the whole audience with her amazing look, long legs, straight hair, and beautiful face. Who would ever guess that the model they were gazing at was actually born male. Andreja Pejic is the world’s most in-demand transgender model.
Andreja is a 24-year-old former Bosnian refugee, and she was the star of what was, to date, the most politically correct fashion show ever put together. H&M, a brand that is known for its affordable fashions, has done something that bigger fashion houses have not been able to do. They put together a very inclusive runway show.
Swedish brand H&M had a very politically correct fashion show on the Paris Fashion Week. Also on the runway was another transgender star Hari Nef. The runway was full of minority groups. Well-known plus-size model Ashley Graham was part of the show. Amber Valetta, who was a big name in fashion in the 1980s, also made an appearance. Rounding off the lineup of the show were Jourdan Dunn, a 25-year-old black model, and Soo Joo Park, an Asian model.
The biggest star of the show was probably 65-year-old Pat Cleveland, who has long been a part of the fashion elite. She is one of the first black American supermodels and is a living legend in the field of fashion.
As a young model, Pat protested against racism in the United States fashion industry. She stayed in Paris and promised not to return until Vogue would have a black person on the cover. She is a much-admired pioneer for being outspoken about the inclusiveness of the fashion world.
With her being part of H&M’s Paris show, it signified not just inclusiveness but also a tearing down of the barriers. Fashion has come a long way since Pat’s protests in the seventies. Walking the runway for a very inclusive and diverse lineup has been a full circle moment for her.
Why would a high-street brand make such a stand with their fashion show? Maybe it’s the pressure that the fashion world in general has felt over the past few years to be more open with their choices of models. It is known that brands always try to outdo one another when coming up with their fashion lines and runway shows. It has become harder and harder to find something that hasn’t been done before. And that is where the idea of having a groundbreaking fashion show has come.
To come up with something that truly hasn’t been done, they had to have a racially diverse lineup that included transgender models and a fashion legend. While the clothes on the runway were great, what caught the attention of the media were the models. There was no discrimination as to their sex, age, gender, or weight.
What that show meant was that, anyone can wear these clothes. Anyone of any age can buy from this store. It highlighted the fact that although there are physical differences, at the end of the day, all a customer wants is good quality clothing.
Although these women do not represent the average woman, the bold fashion statement put out by H&M was admirable. They showed that they are aware that people want to see diversity on the runway, and they found a way to do it beautifully and on the biggest stage in fashion too. Hopefully, other fashion week shows will be just as bold.