Over the past few seasons, fashion fans will have noticed the rise of the “normal” model. That is, a person whose genetic make-up is neither glamazonian nor striking, but special in a familiar kind of way. At the forefront of this new look is Good Catch, a London-based casting agency founded by Sarah Small, which counts Marc Jacobs, Off-White, Kiko Kostadinov, and Stüssy among its clients. Unlike traditional scouts, Small scans for character, not measurements, approaching “real” people in supermarkets and public transport with asymmetrical features and arrhythmic walks.
As a result, Small is shifting fashion’s understanding of what it means to be (and appear) aspirational – proving there is no singular look that signals luxury. She credits this to a lifelong interest in documentaries and people-watching, “appreciating how special and individual” people are. Schooled under Madeleine Østlie, Small has cast awkward scene kids for Acne Studios, renegade teens for Bottega Veneta, and fashion editors at Chopova Lowena – which proved to be one the most invigorating showcases of the SS23 season largely because of its casting. There, friends of the brand, musicians, and street-cast models stomped about in concertina kilts and tinsel booties to the howls and shrieks of a Bulgarian choir. A ragtag bunch of people, but all the better for it.
Text Daniel Rodgers