On the heels of fashion month shows each season, theFashionSpot reviews each major runway show, measuring the models’ race, age, size and gender identity, and compiles their report on industry diversity. According to Jennifer Davidson, Managing Editor for theFashionSpot, “This is the most inclusive runway season ever.” Here are a few highlights from the site’s Spring 2017 runway diversity report.
Overall diversity on the runway increased this season to 25.4%, up from 24.75%, which was the percentage of diversity from the Fall/Winter 2016 season. Such an increase in diversity was certainly boosted, at least in part, by the casting observed by Kanye West. For the second season in a row, West’s Yeezy show had the highest score, with 97% models of color (though his strategy invited its own controversy, namely surrounding the legality, or lack thereof, of his seemingly discriminatory casting call).
Other highly racially diverse shows included Kimora Lee Simmons (82%), Ashish (75%), and Brandon Maxwell (69%), the budding young brand favored by Lady Gaga, Kerry Washington, and Gwyneth Paltrow.
Yet as in past years, some designers made little effort to diversify: The Row and Junya Watanabe were among several designers to feature zero models of color, despite the “racial diversity pointers” issued by the CFDA. As for age diversity, in almost every city (Paris being the exception) at least one model over age 50 walked in a runway show. Lauren Htton, age 72, very notably closed the Bottega Veneta show alongside Gigi Hadid in Milan.
Although it remains the most inclusive city, New York was the only city this season to fail to increase its racial diversity – in fact, it slightly decreased, from 31.6% to 30.3%. That being said, it made strides in other forms of diversity: all 16 plus-size models this season (up from 6 in Fall 2016) walked in New York shows, as did 8 of the 10 transgender models this season (an improvement from 8 overall in Fall 2016, and six in Spring 2016 before that).
And not only was the overall percentage of diversity up for S/S 2017, three of the top ten models to walk in the most shows s this season were women of color: Selena Forrest, Lineisy Montero, and Mayowa Nicholas.
See below for a few infographics from the report, and find the full report on theFashionSpot.