Iconic 90s supermodel Naomi Campbell partnered with fast fashion retailer PrettyLittleThing to create her own collection. She presented her line at the beginning of New York Fashion Week and finished off the show by walking in one of her designs.
Campbell collaborated on the collection for two looks with emerging designers Victor Anate and Edvin Thompson. She stated, “I’m very intentional about using my platform to create opportunities for the next generation of creatives.”
The partnership between PLT and Campbell comes as a shock to many, though, as Campbell’s brand stems from the high-fashion, 90s supermodel age. She represents beauty and breaking barriers in the modeling industry as a Black model. She is expensive, exclusive and elusive. For her to partner with a large fast fashion retailer doesn’t make sense when considering her nuance and history in the industry. Especially in this age of responsible consumerism and environmental awareness, partnering with an unsustainable retailer does not seem like a good move for her personal brand and has caused confusion among her fanbase.
When AP News asked about the environmental implications of her partnering with PrettyLittleThing, Campbell said, “Well, I address it like the white models when they did fast fashion, they were praised.” She brings up an issue of accountability, that we are more critical of certain individuals based upon race. She continues on to say, “It’s a journey of change. Sustainability will come. It will have to,” without acknowledging the responsibility she has as a figure in the fashion industry to foster said change.