HOORAY FOR DIVERSITY, DAMMIT!
Diversity is exactly what the fashion world has been missing and ma-a-a-n, is that wait long overdue. People of color have been pleading with the industry for more inclusion and visibility of our communities and cultures into this business and that time has finally arrived. Now, more so than ever, we are seeing a more cultivated fashion week that is just bursting with a loud and uniquely lit energy and flavor. HELLO, CULTURE. We’re so happy you came!
But, what if this wonderful new wave of inclusion, isn’t really inclusion at all?
What if all of the theatrics, performances and celebrity engagements we’re witnessing are simply just an appropriated “attraction for distraction”? Is this the inclusion we expected, or are people of color being pacified and pandered to, yet again? We have no answers to any of these questions, nor are we alluding to any cases of right or wrongdoing. But, since being presented with both sides of the coin, one thing’s for certain and that’s the definite need for the discussion. So, let’s start by taking a look at both sides.
One of this season’s top presenters at New York Fashion Week (NYFW), Philipp Plein, put on one hell of a show! In fact, fashion critics and journalists, alike are calling Plein’s Spring/Summer ’18 runway show, “one of the biggest to date!”
The Swiss designer’s $7 million dollar Good Gone Bad presentation at the Hammerstein Ballroom drew in droves of A-list celebs! Stars ranging from Yo Gotti to Paris Hilton were all in attendance. Dita Von Teese opened the event with her signature martini glass burlesque-style striptease, Future acted as the show’s unofficial host, performing throughout the course of the show and Nicki Minaj took to the stage for the after-party!
Plein’s model lineup contained a few larger-than-life names as well. Cordell Broadus (son of Snoop Dogg), 21 Savage and actress/recording artist Teyana Taylor, whose phenomenally sexy take on a runway strut to Future’s hit single Mask Off came in the form of duck walking in a thong! A full on #LITUATION… For sure!
Plein may single-handedly be the reason why the NYFW show producers change the week’s name to New York “Fun” Week! It was an innovative and bold representation of style and EGL loved every moment of it! But…
On the flip side of things, there are still a few individuals who weren’t particularly happy with the direction of the show. They believe that the black star power made it exclusive while black culture made it big.
Fashion maverick and Sirius XM radio host of the hit show Bevelations, Bevy Smith, had plenty to say on the topic and even provided receipts to bring credence to her claims. Check out a few of her latest Instagram posts below!
There's no denying that Harlem goddess #teyanataylor is the best thing that came down the #phillipplein ! All the press can talk about are the amazing performers that Plein spent 7 figures on to get them to attend & perform at his #EmperorsNewClothes spectacle! Very little is being said about the clothes, perhaps because as USUAL they are knockoffs of 90's Versus by Versace! To Nicki, Future, Dita, Rae Sremmurd & Teyana, I know y'all backed up the Brinks truck! #GetMoney #WasItAConcertOrAFashionShow #WeveSeenPleinBeforeAndBetterExecuted #KnockItOffWithTheObviKnockOffs
Did you catch that?!
Not only is Smith calling Plein out on his culture vulture-esque tendencies, but she also makes sure to point out the fact that he is a repeat offender. Alice in Ghetto-land??? Who the hell he callin’ GHETTO?!
We hope you got all of that because now, it’s discussion time! Taking a peek through a clean and unbiased lens will help sort out the “real tea” from the “fake news”.
If we stripped the Plein show down to its bare bones and got rid of its star-studded guest list, its performances and outrageous runway walks―What are you really left with? Or, better yet, what do you really remember about it? Take all of the time you need… We’ll wait.
It all boils down to is this, folks:
The show that Plein delivered was, without a doubt, epic. But, when you think about what took it to its height―what it was that got all of the blogs buzzing―it wasn’t the clothes. And, if we’re being completely honest, the clothes are probably the very last things that come to mind if we’re talking show highlights. The media wasn’t in awe of Plein’s elaborately crafted caged leather skirts or his crystal-studded tees, they were gagging over Future, Nicki and Teyana. To put it plainly; the garments were an afterthought. Hell, they might as well have been standing in line with the rest of the guests waiting to see the real show that evening! #NOSHADE
From there, you can jump to as many conclusions as you’d like. Just as long as you make sure to leave them in our comments section below. We are interested to hear your takes on this one! So, sound off, people and don’t forget to share!
Written by: Maven Cuttino
Associate Fashion & Beauty Editor