Ashish’s London Fashion Week show was full of anti-Trump messages
The Ashish AW17 show at London Fashion Week wasn’t just about unveiling next season’s trends – this collection contained a few not-so-subtle hints at President Trump and his policies.
As a choral rendition of “Somewhere Over The Rainbow” played, the show opened with a handful of rainbow-hued looks in the designer’s signature sequinned fabric, before a model exited in a sleeveless top emblazoned with “Nasty Woman,” the term Trump used to describe Hillary Clinton in the final presidential debate.
While the collection was heavily influenced by American sportswear, with baseball tops and bomber jackets all given the sequin treatment, the slogans couldn’t have been more pointed, with the likes of “More Glitter Less Twitter,” “Love Sees No Colour,” and “Unity in Adversity.”
There was even a pair of black and white chequerboard shorts embellished with ‘Planned Parenthood,’ the name of the organisation Trump signed legislation to defund because it performs abortions.
The most powerful moment of the show came when a man – decidedly shorter and wider than your average catwalker, it must be said – walked the gold glitter-strewn runway in a T-shirt that read “Why be blue when you can be gay!”, prompting spontaneous applause (this almost NEVER happens at fashion shows, trust us).
The criticism was delivered with humour, however: a mint green top declared “Pussy Grabs Back” next to an adorable black kitten, in reference to when Trump was recorded telling a journalist “When you’re star they [women] let you do it. You can do anything. Grab ‘em by the pussy.”
This isn’t the first time the designer has used his work to make a political statement. When taking a bow at the end of his SS17 show last September, Gupta sported a white T-shirt printed with the word “immigrant,” – it later went on sale – explaining later that, “it makes me so angry every time ‘immigration’ is used as an excuse to rile up hatred and racism, especially after Brexit.”
But the outlook for AW17 was ultimately one of hope and solidarity, as models danced their way through the finale to the joyous strains of Sister Sledge’s “We Are Family.”
“Fall in love and be more tender” read one pink T-shirt, “Keep the Faith,” urged another, while a red baseball top delivered Gupta’s strongest message: “Never Give Up.”