Nordstrom Catalog Features Models With Disabilities Because Fashion Should Be For Everyone
Loving the fashion industry is a tough job. Daily, we read about another photoshop fail or totally white-washed runway show that makes us question whether our loyalty would be better served elsewhere. But almost as often there's a story that shows us just how must more inclusive the industry is becoming. Today, that story is about Nordstrom's latest catalog, which features models with severe disabilities.
This is actually a yearly tradition for the major department store. According to AP, Nordstrom has been using models with disabilities since 1997 (waaay before body positivity was a "thing" in fashion). For the July 2014 catalog, which kicks off Nordstrom's giant annual fall preview sale, the models include a woman in a wheelchair with an amazing violet pixie cut and a man with a prosthetic leg showing off a killer pair of Nike running shoes.
Meg O'Connell from the consulting firm Global Disability Inclusion praised Nordstrom in a conversation with AP about the ads:
Time to give Nordstrom a rousing standing ovation for that one. Not only does the company use models with disabilities, but they place them alongside the other models without any additional fan-fare. All of the models are presented equally, as they should be. "Love yourself!" tag lines are great, but sometimes it's nice to have a brand quietly make use of diverse models without also jumping up and down and yelling "LOOK AT US! WE'RE BEING INCLUSIVE!"
That being said, I would support this no matter what. We need more ad campaigns featuring people who resemble, well, people. And that's exactly Nordstrom's goal, according to what Tara Darrow, a spokesperson for Nordstrom, told AP about the campaign:
So how about we all go hit up that Nordstrom sale, huh? I can't think of a company better deserving of my hard-earned money right now.