After a season with increased diversity and inclusivity, the final moment of Paris Fashion Week was especially poignant.
On the last day of Paris Fashion Week, during the last collection of Paris fashion week, history was made by model Janaye Furman. She became the first black woman to open a Louis Vuitton show in the brand’s 163-year-old history.
In an Instagram post, Furman wrote “What a blessing!! Wow! This is such an incredible and unbelievable moment! Not only for my first opening show to be Louis Vuitton but to make history as the first African American girl to open LV?!! Thank you God and everyone for all of the amazing support! I’m so glad more women of color are rocking the runways. It’s so important that we stand up for ourselves and make a difference in this world.”
The accomplishment is made even more spectacular by the fact that Furman, a Southern California drama student, just started modeling last year after being scouted during a class performance. She has been cast previously in Louis Vuitton’s fall 2017 show and has modeled for a handful of their editorials and campaigns.
It was a moment capping off a season that reflected a move toward increased diversity and inclusivity in fashion. Last month, Louis Vuitton was one of many brands that pledged against the hiring of size-zero models.
“While there’s still a lot of work to be done, progress is happening slowly, but it’s clearly happening,” Emilia Petrarca wrote for The Cut. “After 163 years, it better be.”