The practice of excluding models of color is double insulting when it comes to a fashion collaboration with West African influences.
Lululemon’s recent collaboration announcement with fashion brand Osei-Duro is definitely a major look for the popular Vancouver-based fitness apparel brand. These designs are heavily inspired by textiles and patterns that are rich and housed from diaspora. What’s troubling is the lack of models of color to reflect the foundation of Osei-Duro as a West African-based design line that hints at Lululemon’s lack of cultural I.Q.
I thoroughly researched all of the properties for Osei-Duro on their Facebook and their main website. Their models are diverse in nature and in style. So for Lululemon to continue this practice of mainly featuring white models even when collaborating with an African-influenced brand stings even more than the lack of representation of African models in the fashion industry overall.
Image: Facebook/Osei Duro
I really want to support this collection but I am tired of brands co-opting African culture without reflecting any of its influence when it comes to physical representation.
This practice needs to stop and women of all races, cultures and ethnicities should be free to hold companies to this task. Yogis come in all shapes and sizes. This whitewashed, skinny-girls-only club needs to recruit new and diverse members.