To coincide with the start of London Fashion WeekSS20, Instagram has compiled a new report on fashion and the role the photo-sharing app has played in making the industry a more inclusive place. To mark its publication, we collaborated on a panel at IG HQ made up of model and activist Kelly Knox, model and writer Simran Randhawa, designer Mowalola, and Instagram’s Sunil Singhvi, hosted by Dazed Digital’s Head of Fashion Emma Hope Allwood – who was interviewed as one of the industry experts in the report.
“Instagram is providing a more accessible way into the fashion industry,” Allwood said. “Fashion used to be associated with being this ivory tower, but Instagram, with new gen of tastemakers and influencers, has allowed people to stand up and say there is a space for us in the fashion industry and we deserve to be part of this conversation.”
“Instagram is amazing because if you wanted to see yourself represented, wanna be seen, wanna be heard, you want to be celebrated, that’s where you do it,” Kelly Knox said, criticising the mainstream media’s lack of development when it comes to representing people with disabilities. Simran Randhawa, meanwhile, detailed how important Instagram has been for her when it came to creating a community of creatives of colour.
With fashion being in the top five interests pursued on the app in the UK, people are coming together to share, celebrate, and shop new styles. Influencers, designers, and models alike, are using the app to “both inspire and be inspired, leading the way with novel, inclusive viewpoints,” the report – dubbed Fashion Forward – states. Elsewhere, it also details how people are “recognising the impact of personal stories,” using Instagram as a springboard for wider conversations.
“It’s really exciting to know the power that Instagram has on the new generation,” Mowalola explained. “If when I was younger I’d seen other designers doing what I do and showing content that’s not just solely what big corporations would want to see, it would have done a lot for me creatively.”