Fashion

UNIFIED BY COLOUR: Digital Catwalk

Watch FANGIRL's catwalk show and meet the models Thea and Iniko

Launching on hungertv.com as part of London Fashion Week, Black-owned, non-gendered hand accessories brand FANGIRL is launching its Unified by Colour collection via a digital catwalk. Featuring CGI models Thea (she/her) and Iniko (they/them), the runway serves to showcase the multitude of experiences within the Black community.

We “interviewed” models Thea and Iniko using answers based on those given by AI trained using a bespoke diaspora data set built and developed by Place Nice, through the use of real contributions from an array of people across the Black Diaspora. Read on to see what they came up with and watch the catwalk below or on YouTube….

MEET THE MODELS

 

Thea (she/ her)

Outfit: Unified by Colour bespoke body, cape-style durag and leg chains.

 

How do clothes help you to express your identity?

Clothes help me express myself by showing what kind of inspiration I can be and what I stand for as a person

 

What were your perceptions of the fashion industry growing up?

Growing up, I thought the fashion industry was very trashy and there was always the fear of being objectified again. I didn’t realise the extent to which it was normalised. It wasn’t until a few years ago that I really began to question how normalized this culture of beauty really was. I think it has finally hit me and I’m not the only one. The fashion industry is littered with models who have gone on to greater things and I hope they inspire you to go after your dreams too.

 

How do you let go of the thoughts that restrain you?

I let go of thoughts that hold me back by not pushing through because of my anxieties about the thoughts. I didn’t need a gym to push me in the right direction. I just needed a supportive environment to learn how to navigate the online world without getting overwhelmed.

 

What digital platforms do you feel able to express yourself most on?

My identity differs online from offline because I’ve found peace with my differences and use them to my advantage. On the other hand, online can easily be reclaimed by the harmful attention-seeking behaviours we see too much of.

 

What digital features do you use to express yourself?

I use digital features like insta stories to document my daily life and emotions and then I block it out. This has allowed me to process traumatic memories and then piece them together to create a mental plan to deal with them in the future. In some ways it allows you to own your emotions more than you can words.

 

Iniko (they / them)

Outfit: Reworked Unified by Colour t-shirt with safety pins, blue gloves, thigh-high boots and a black wrap skirt, accessorised with 90s-style shades.

 

How do clothes help you to express your identity?

Clothes help me express my identity, they are a platform to tell me who I am as a person.  Society, however, doesn’t always give you that permission. My wardrobe has always been a way of me protecting myself, sometimes it’s necessary.

 

What were your perceptions of the fashion industry growing up?

Growing up, I thought the fashion industry was very shallow and considered my every move. I never really felt at ease in my own body so I wasn’t really affected by how others were feeling about it. But as I got older and started to care for my body more, I started to understand how fragile it was

 

What’s your hope for the future of the industry?

In the future, I hope the industry will be more accepting of diversity. Too many white faces in too many important positions. The internet is a great platform for people of all types of backgrounds to come together however the lack of prominent black voices in the industry has had a detrimental effect on the diversity of the industry itself. The industry is still lacking in this area though so there is still much to do.

 

Where do  you look to for inspiration and someone to feel connected to?

I get inspired by other people and how they’re living their lives and how they’re expressing themselves, so that’s what I lean into when I feel inspired. When I’m not inspired IRL it’s pretty much the same. I guess there’s a screen and I can curate the way I want people to perceive me, so for a while that was 🌎🎶.

 

Shop FANGIRL’s Unified by Colour Drop here. You can read about how Play Nice generated Thea and Iniko’s answers here and read about the process of making the digital catwalk here.

CATWALK CREDITS

 

Brand & Creative Director:  FANGIRL founded by Rani Patel-Williams 
Creative & Digital Design Director: Catty Tay 
Production Director: Institute of Digital Fashion, founded by Catty Tay and Leanne Elliot Young
3D Design / Animation: Digi-gxl
Diaspora Researcher: Play Nice
Music Production: Rabiah
Graphic Design: Katie Ling

 

18 September 2020