Fashion's Color Problem
Malaika Firth, the first black model to represent Prada since Naomi Campbell in 1994 Source: The Huffington Post
For the first time since 1994 when Naomi Campbell was featured in their ads, a model of color is representing Prada in their latest print campaign. In a year when much has been made about the industry's continued lack of diversity on the runways and on magazine covers, the luxury designer's decision to feature Kenyan born and UK based model Malaika Firth is a big deal. Along with the hiring of Ms. Firth by Prada, there was a noticeable increase in models of color on the Paris runaway at the recent couture shows—most notably at Dior. Is this the start of a true change by the leading designers or just a token effort as a result of the loud complaints? Or will it be business as usual once the voices quiet? Time will tell. But based on an in-depth New York Times article featuring quotes from Iman and many other top industry insiders, the fight will and must continue to be taken to the image makers in order to bring about real change.
This is important, said Veronica Webb, who encountered the same excuses during the years she walked the runways in the ’90s, because “this is where a lot of young women get their idea of beauty from.”
“When you see someone that looks like you,” she said, “it makes women feel beautiful, and it makes women feel they belong.”Read the the full article on the battle for better representation on the NYTimes.com and more about the beautiful Ms. Firth on The Huffington Post