Dolce and Gabbana Just Changed The Game
Fashion is never not a mirror of the times.
There is an ongoing global conversation about equality going on right now, a conversation that addresses everything from race to religion to culture and how we all fit into this vast and ever changing planet. Is there room for everything? Are we all being represented fairly? Where are the minorities in fashion, music and art? Why are majority groups being over represented? Why does Vogue still use white American models in Japanese inspired editorials? Is this cultural appropriation or just simply art? And where do we draw the line?
There are many industries and sectors that act as a reflection of the moment and of the times we are living in, but none resonate with people as profoundly as creative fields such as art, music and fashion do.
In the case of fashion right now, there have been a milion brands trying to capture the essence of diversity and acceptance. Bringing together the old and the new, people of all ages and ethnicities, and breaking the cookie cutter image of the staple "model" to present their products in a method that can somehow appeal quite literally to the masses.
Dolce and Gabbana's show last night completely threw out the metaphorical guide book of what a runway show should offer, and aimed to make a very bold and obvious statement. They used musicians, bloggers, actors and actresses, second generation celebrities, and people from all walks of life - a lot like Vetements but on an amplified scale of grandioseness - foregoing the ideal standard of models and presenting a loud, multi-faceted, booming, extravaganza of a show.
The runway line up included, to name a few, singers such as British popstar Pixie Lott and Austin Mahone, Hollywood dynasties like the three daughters of actor Andy Garcia and rock offspring Anais Gallagher, daughter of Noel Gallagher and Meg Matthews, shoe designer Charlotte Olympia walked down the runway with her mother and sister, and even royals were among the models selected including Ladies Kitty Spencer, niece of Diana, Princess of Wales and Amelia Windsor. Lebanese blogger Lana El Sahely walked along with Aimee Song New York Times best selling style author.
The men's catwalk included an even more heavily outsourced roster of individuals. Ranging from musical talents like The Atomics’ Lucky Blue Smith and TinieTempah, to celebrity offspring including Pamela Anderson’s son, Dylan Lee, and Cindy Crawford’s son, Presley Gerber. Lionel Richie's daughter, Sofia, and two of Sylvester Stallone's daughters, Sophia and Sistine, also walked.
Between the crowns, embroidery, lace, fur, glitter and glow. The leopard skin runway, burgundy lips and floral appliques; this was a massive spectacle. Inevitably, such a show brings in the obvious question ... was this all done just to garner insane social media attention? For the purpose of blogs and online magazines, like this one, to write long and raving reviews, or for skeptics to bash the idea of shifting our focus away from D&G's actual clothing line to the people who wore it. My answer is that, in this day and age, we are more than prepared for such a seemingly drastic shift. In true millennial fashion, we are a generation built on mastering the art of multitasking, and so are quite capable of processing both beautiful clothing and interesting people marching down a catwalk all at once with confidence and unapologetic pride.
Personally, I enjoyed watching women carrying children walk down the runway looking beautiful, it was a refreshing sight, a hopeful sight, an image that generates more positive connotations than negative ones, and that is what counts at the end of the day.
This runway show deserves nothing less than a standing ovation, because although the people selected were still more or less famous to some degree or another, the choices were in fact different. In taking this first step, it is arguable to say that we finally allow for even more change to occur in the future, and isn't that what this year is all about?