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Milan Fashion Week promotes emerging black designers.

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Milan Fashion Week is taking proactive steps towards diversity and inclusion with the launch of a new initiative aimed at promoting underrepresented designers within the industry. The initiative, announced as part of the Fall-Winter 2024-25 previews, seeks to address discriminatory practices and create opportunities for designers from marginalized communities. Spearheaded by the Italian fashion council, a governmental anti-discrimination office, and a nonprofit promoting African fashion, the initiative aims to trace, identify, and combat discrimination across the fashion industry.

At the core of the initiative is a comprehensive survey designed to assess the representation of women, people of color, and other underrepresented groups within various sectors of the fashion industry, from fashion houses to suppliers. The survey aims to provide a snapshot of current diversity levels and identify areas for improvement. Carlo Capasa, president of the Italian National Fashion Chamber, expressed hopes of obtaining results within a year, emphasizing the importance of collaboration with government entities to effect meaningful change.

The Italian fashion industry has faced scrutiny in recent years regarding its representation of people of color, particularly in decision-making roles. The initiative represents a concerted effort to address these concerns and foster a more inclusive and equitable fashion landscape. While previous initiatives have focused on promoting designers of color, such as We Are Made in Italy and the Black Carpet Awards, the new initiative aims to tackle systemic issues behind-the-scenes and promote diversity at all levels of the industry.

As part of Milan Fashion Week, the Fashion Hub showcased emerging designers from underrepresented communities, providing a platform for brands like BruceGlen, anOnlyChild, and Sabirah to showcase their collections. Bruce and Glen Proctor of BruceGlen infused their collection with vibrant colors and a sense of joy, while Deborah Latouche drew inspiration from the iconic character Dominique Deveraux for her Sabirah collection. Maxwell Osborne of anOnlyChild incorporated his Jamaican roots into his designs, utilizing deadstock fabrics to create elevated looks with a nod to his heritage.

The Fashion Hub initiative, sponsored by Blanc Magazine's Teneshia Carr and the Italian fashion council, offers emerging designers the opportunity to connect with buyers and industry professionals, fostering growth and visibility within the fashion community. By highlighting the creative talents of designers from diverse backgrounds, Milan Fashion Week aims to challenge industry norms and promote greater inclusivity and representation in the world of fashion.

Feb. 22, 2024 3:12 p.m. 2219

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