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Brief Published: 6 Sep 2017

Fashion Ad Campaigns A/W 17/18: Diversity Gains

Miu Miu A/W 17

The A/W 17/18 campaign season saw designers increasingly responding to calls for diversity, with The Fashion Spot’s biannual diversity report noting a more inclusive outlook towards race and gender identity. 

Non-white models cast this season exceeded 30% for the first time in years, with designer labels Coach and Dolce & Gabbana featuring a majority of women of colour in their campaigns (67% and 63% respectively). The shift follows growing inclusivity on the catwalks, which saw at least one model of colour walk for every show at New York Fashion Week A/W 17/18.

Transgender castings underwent a modest but encouraging increase for the season, with six models walking for brands like Sisley, Phillip Plein and Helmut Lang. The latter put together a particularly notable campaign featuring trans model Dara, Lonely Lingerie model Aurel Haize Odogbo and New York designer Gogo Graham, who creates apparel specifically for trans women.

Shrewd designers would do well to engage with the 50+ consumer, whose visibility continues to wane in campaigns. Mature models appeared just 14 times in ads this season (compared to 22 in A/W 15/16) – despite this demographic spending an astonishing $5.6tn on consumer goods and services in 2015 alone (AARP, 2016).

For more on the fashion diversity conversation, see The New Fashion Landscapes 2017 Update: Diversity Rules.