Winning the CFDA Award doesn’t just get you a foot in the fashion industry, it solidifies your career as a designer. Telfar Clemens’ eponymous line combines our favourite cotton T-shirts with the whimsicality of unisex design. And, mind you, not unisex in a “menswear that women can wear too” sense, but true garments that exemplify 50% femininity, 50% masculinity. By subverting the gender stereotypes in his designs, Clemens not only redefines New York cool in 2018, but has set a precedent for designers looking for a model to follow. His success has reverberated such that Vogue recently announced a fashion week schedule for non-binary clothing, which, even if you might have an issue with, is proof Telfar’s not just a cool fashion brand but an art discussion reckoning clothes and social change. His FW18 collection was presented as a concert, and even the stiffest editors couldn’t help but jive along to Clemens himself singing with his closest friends and models. It was a genuine celebration of not just his recent win but representation of colour and sexuality in the industry.
When designers brag about being size inclusive and we have to read about it to know it even happened, it raises questions about their intentions. Or when others point out the expensive costs of including larger sizes in their lines, we can only assume they don’t come from a place of personal struggle to find cute clothes and thus would prefer not to represent those people if it would “make their lives easier.” CFDA runner-up and founder Becca McCharen-Tran decided to turn body positivity on its head with her swimwear line Chromat, pushing vibrant no-F’s-given bikinis and sportswear to give all women the confidence they need to lounge by a beach or cycle to McDonalds. For FW18 we especially love the drawstrings that “reshape” the garments, in case our flaming hot Cheetos add to our curvy waistlines.
Even if you aren’t into fashion, you couldn’t have missed the image of a pregnant model strutting down the Eckhaus Latta runway last SS18, with her belly exposed by a maternity dress unbuttoned at the center collaged all over social media. Such proves diversity is real in fashion at the moment, and Eckhaus Latta as an ethos is proof diversity could be forever. Founders Mike Eckhaus and Zoe Latta are the antithesis of establishment fashion, putting ugly wearables at the forefront of their brand. Not just in their clothes, Eckhaus Latta makes American Apparel nudity cool again from their communication strategy but combined with the Marques Almeida show they’re not just valley SJWs with a dream, but designers to put out clothes we actually want to wear.