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Fashion brands place spotlight on International Women’s Day

By Danielle Wightman-Stone


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Image: Mango; Alexia Putellas

This year’s International Women’s Day (IWD) is about how we can #EmbraceEquity by raising awareness about discrimination to drive gender parity. Several fashion brands and retailers have launched initiatives to empower women and products to raise vital funds for women-focused charities and organisations.

There’s an exclusive poem from & Other Stories, a rental offering from Karen Millen for job interviews, an education and sports initiative from Mango, and a T-shirt to raise money for women survivors of war.

Image: & Other Stories

& Other Stories commissions exclusive poem by Nikita Gill

& Other Stories is celebrating the female written word to mark IWD with a campaign and exclusive poem from Nikita Gill, an Irish Indian writer described as one of the most exciting young writers and “Insta-poets” today.

Gill has written a poem to spark inspiration and conversation about women today, with & Other Stories asking its community to share their own answers to “What does International Women’s Day mean to you?” on Instagram.

The poem, which will feature online and in-store from March 8 to 14, includes the passage: “Praise for all the women you have been to become the woman you are today. You are your own sacred story.”

Lina Söderqvist, managing director at & Other Stories, said in a statement: “This International Women’s Day, we hope to inspire exploration of the power of self-expression and provide uplifting sentiments through poetry.”

Image: Karen Millen; 'Forever Dress'

Karen Millen to offer rental dresses for interviews for 20 pounds

Karen Millen is launching a new initiative for IWD that supports this year’s theme of embracing equity by offering women the chance to look their best at work, for an interview or meeting by providing a “polished outfit at an accessible cost”.

The retailer will offer women the chance to rent its iconic ‘Forever Dress,’ worn by the likes of the Princess of Wales, Elizabeth Hurley, and Helena Christensen for 20 pounds for 4 days. There is also an opportunity to purchase the ‘Forever Dress’ at a discounted price.

Natasha Hackett, brand director at Karen Millen, said: “Workwear is one of our key categories, and the Forever Dress is one of our customer’s most loved styles, so to be able to offer this office essential at an accessible price through our new rental platform is great.”

Image: Mango

Mango joins forces with Save the Children to promote education in Bangladesh

Fashion retailer Mango is joining forces with Save the Children to promote education and sport among children and women in Bangladesh, a key location for clothing manufacturing worldwide.

Through the Goals project, Mango will support the work of Save the Children with a donation of 500,000 euros to promote learning opportunities in two of the local communities close to several factories it works with, in the Daca and Savar regions.

The Goals project focuses on promoting access to education and sport through the construction of four primary schools and the promotion of leisure and educational activities, such as football, cricket, and badminton tournaments for girls aged 10 to 18.

In addition, Mango ambassador and footballer Alexia Putellas is supporting the campaign by co-creating a T-shirt featuring a message that Girls should play with dolls whatever they want to.

The T-shirt will go on sale in selected stores in Spain, Portugal, France, Turkey and the US, and via its Mango.com in more than 80 markets worldwide. All profits from its sale will be donated to Save the Children to implement the second phase of the project at a later date in Turkey.

Image: Hush

Hush partners with Women for Women International

Womenswear brand Hush is launching a ‘Women Unite, Unite Women’ T-shirt to raise vital funds for Women for Women International, a charity that helps women survivors of war rebuild their lives through training and leadership roles within their communities.

Hush will donate 10 pounds from each Women Unite T-shirt sold on their website until March 12. The funds will support the charity's year-long ‘Stronger Women, Stronger Nations’ programme, where women gain knowledge, skills and resources to rebuild their lives, support their families and strengthen their communities.

Sarah Miles, chief executive at Hush, said: “As a female-founded brand, whose customers and employees are largely women, celebrating and supporting women has always been and remains central to hush’s purpose.

“The work that Women for Women International do helping women rebuild their lives through access to education and community is crucial, and we are delighted to be able to support their much-needed programmes this year for International Women’s Day.”

The Women United T-shirt is priced at 35 pounds.

Image: Pomellato; Joey King

Pomellato launches 6th annual ‘Pomellato for Women’ video

To honour IWD, Pomellato has gathered an inspirational cast of women, including Jane Fonda, American actress Joey King and Iranian rock climber Nasim Eshqi for its 6th annual ‘Pomellato for Women’ video advocating for freedom.

The video series, created to advocate for gender equality, the power of sisterhood, and the need for inclusivity, sees the stars discussing how women are disproportionally implicated in the fight for freedoms, and how, together, we need to speak up, rise up, and act now.

Commenting on Pomellato’s theme for 2023, chief executive Sabina Belli said: “Unfortunately, our freedoms as women and people continue to come under threat across the world – this year it has become especially evident. We are being suppressed, challenged, reduced, silenced, killed.

“Everyone is responsible to rise up and speak out against our loss of freedoms; I am proud to present the Pomellato for Women video alongside some of our most inspirational and powerful sisters, to speak our truth and to raise our voices to protect freedom.”

Image: Alice + Olivia

Alice + Olivia teams up female artists for IWD

For Women’s History Month and IWD, Alice + Olivia have collaborated with artists Blair Breitenstein, Kendra Dandy and Deborah Kass on two capsule collections.

The first is two limited edition Willa Blouses featuring artwork by Blair Breitenstein and Kendra Dandy. The exclusive blouses, available from today, March 8, will raise money for Global Fund for Women’s Artist Changemaker Programme, which encourages and supports artists to use their art to raise injustice awareness and to create impactful change.

While artist Deborah Kass has collaborated with the fashion label on a capsule collection featuring a leather jacket, a tee and the brand’s classic Willa Blouse.

Both collections will be available to buy in the UK and Europe at aliceandolivia.com, as well as in Saks, Bloomingdales and Neiman Marcus in the US.

Image: Alice + Olivia
International Women's Day