We live in a global culture that increasingly challenges traditional beauty ideals, pushes boundaries and blurs colour, creed, body size, ethnicity and gender lines defining separations. Though a bit slow to catch on, mainstream fashion is finally jumping on the bandwagon with brands, retailers, designers and other decision makers changing collections, sizes and categories to become more inclusive, discovering diverse and unique individuals as well as groups of shamed and excluded communities as new consumers and encouraging them to be proud of who they are. FashionUnited has put together seven such progressive steps towards more inclusivity.
1. Women’s plus-size activewear: To celebrate size inclusivity
and invest in plus-size ranges, more and more brands are joining the
bandwagon in the activewear market. Nike was praised for introducing a
plus-size mannequin to 'celebrate the diversity and inclusivity of sport';
Vitality launched the 'Celebrate You' campaign; the Girlfriend Collective
dedicated to sustainability has become more size inclusive; Beyond Yoga
tests its garments on real women, including their staff, and K.Deer offers
activewear in sizes XS to 4XL.
What women's plus activewear looks like today
2. Adaptive wear for the differently abled: There is a
substantial population with a variety of disabilities who so far had been
ignored by the fashion industry. But that is changing: To allow for
mainstream adaptive wear and to make the fashion industry more inclusive to
those with disabilities, various individuals have come forward to make a
difference: Mindy Scheier founded the Runway of Dreams Organization, Lucy
Jones founded Ffora and Sinéad Burke let casts of her body be taken for
making the world’s first little person mannequin.
Adaptive wear the new activewear, still an untapped market
3. Size extension: Designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana
expressed that it came natural to them to extend the sizes of some clothes
of their collections as a tribute to women of all body shapes and to beauty
in its entirety, becoming the first luxury fashion house to extend its
size range to 20 in the US, 22 in the UK and 54 in Europe.
Dolce & Gabbana becomes the first luxury fashion house to extend sizes
4. Gender fluidity: London-based Serena Rees, founder of luxury
lingerie label Agent Provocateur, aims to challenge gender norms with Les
Girls Les Boys. The brand encourages diverse and cross-cultural mindsets
pushing for fluidity. The brand has opened a New York office to gear itself
up for the American market.
British Brand Les Girls Les Boys is coming for the US with inclusivity
5. New sizes: Universal Standard's have set out to change
everything by creating unprecedented access, making size irrelevant,
representing all of the US, and to establish a 'new normal' for future
generations. It will now offer all sizes between 00 and 40 across all
Universal Standard extends sizing to 00-40
6. Inclusivity in footwear: Women's accessory brand Loeffler
Randall decided to expand sizing in response to customer demand for sizes
outside of the available range, thus bringing size inclusivity into the
Loeffler Randall extends sizing and launches bridal line
7. LGBTI rights: Primark partnered with ILGA World, the
International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association, for
its ‘Feeling Proud’ collection, which is all about diversity and
inclusivity. The Irish discounter also pledged a generous donation to
provide direct support and resources for their 1500+ LGBTI member
organisations in over 150 countries.
Primark and IGLA World announce partnership
Stay tuned for further updates on new inclusivity designs and trends in the fashion world.Photos: Nike Town London courtesy of Nike; Primark