Saturday, February 2, 2008

Superstar Models of Color

With New York Fashion Week for Fall 2008 upon us, New York Magazine released an article on "The Top Ten Models to Watch This Fashion Week." Although diversity is still severely lacking in the American and European modeling industries, two rising superstars, that just happen to be ladies of color, were highlighted in the article.

One of the stunners is Daul Kim, from South Korea. She's "already a star in her native country, South Korea, sharing the August 2007 Korean Vogue cover with Coco Rocha. She also appeared in Chinese Vogue in December 2007. And fashion ad watchers will also recognize her from last year’s fall Moschino campaign as well as H&M’s current spring prints. Already a burgeoning style icon off the runway — this novice painter was rocking thick bangs months before Kate Moss chopped her tresses — Kim's on her way to being a runway icon as well. She's scored Karl Lagerfeld's blessing, having walked in every Chanel show since fall 2007."

The other gorgeous lady is Jourdan Dunn, from the U.K. The article states, "In a season when most designers were passing over darker-skin models, elegant Dunn managed to book impressive spring shows like Herm├Ęs, Missoni, and Marc by Marc Jacobs. And she bagged a fall 2007 Benetton campaign, to boot. If any girl is going to end the stream of blank-faced blondes, it’s this British babe. In her third season walking, she’s got our attention."

Sadly, desi models will still be unrepresented yet again this season. Not since the beautiful Ujjwala Raut, from India, walked the runways has there been a desi superstar model.

Interestingly, Newsweek also released a modeling-related article this week called the "Rise of the Real People." The article highlights the increase of "real" people being used as models in blogs such as The Sartorialist or features such as New York Magazine's Look Book. Hmmm, is this a new trend? I doubt real women be pushing celebrities and models off the covers of magazines anytime soon but even magazines are starting to feature us regular gals in many fashion features. It would definitely be a change from the unattainable, airbrushed standard that I know many women would welcome.

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