Cultural Appropriation in fashion


I went to a fashion show over at the meridian grand this weekend and it expressed a lot of cultural appropriation which is something i have a passion for. The fashion show was definitely a great experience however to me showcased a lot of different issues.

To an extent there is diversity in fashion, the problem is that at the moment it is used largely as a marketing tool for companies to announce to the world how wonderful and accepting and progressive they are.  I don’t actually think that most of the people at the top of the fashion establishment want to see things change from thin, white women being the norm. It is what we are used to seeing and what is now acceptable as the usual thing.

However, there are young women, who are leading fashion in a better direction. For example, Elaine Welteroth, the new editor in chief of Teen Vogue is definitely someone who is pushing for diversity genuinely wants to represent a wider range of people. 

We are seeing more and more diversity in high fashion, for example on magazine covers – Teen Vogue is probably doing the best here. I remember that at one point last year,they had gone something like four or five consecutive months with models of colour on their covers, without a single white model in between. I don’t think any other mainstream fashion magazine can compare to this whatsoever, they’re true leaders. Many fashion magazines and editors talk the talk, but very few truly walk the walk.

Lately it has become more evident that how cultural appropriation goes on in the fashion industry.

What has helped this become more evident is celebrities in the limelight. A great example of this would be the Kardashian family and how the appropriate the

 black culture. Some say that they have simply adapted to the culture that is around them by being around a lot of black people, however others say they use the culture in a form of props to enhance themselves. Kim Kardashian was credited for introducing boxer braids in Hollywood which is very unfair as , the black culture has been wearing them for centuries and refer to them as “boxing braids” It’s ridiculous to think that companies and brands have been appropriating black culture for years, and no one has asked for change.

Many people may not understand exactly how cultural appropriation works, as much of it appears to have just barely passed the line of a “trend” or being “inspired by (fill in the blank),” but there is a small detail that makes a big difference. “Cultural appropriation is like working on a project and getting an F, but then, someone copies you and gets an A.”(quote from exposure) .

Overall the fashion show was great and highlighted a lot for me.