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NO on Kavanaugh: Activism at NYFW 2018

Updated: Oct 9, 2018

New York Fashion Week made its mark this year as a political exposition. Designer Jeremy Scott debuted his Spring 2019 collection on the runway and sent a powerful message to the whole world. As always, NYFW’s platform offers each designer the platform to make an international statement and influence society. This year, the event fell during the midst of governmental turmoil.

Jeremy Scott walking the finale of his Spring 2019 Collection show. Photography: Sonny Vandevelde


In his seasonal debut at the kick-off of the largest fashion event of the year, Jeremy Scott chose to show more than just his artistic creativity. This season, his show focused on delivering a political message to his fans, regarding the sexual misconduct and assault allegations against Brett Kavanaugh. Scott was sure to show everyone his stance on President Trump’s Supreme Court Justice nominee, and with the scale of the event, made national headlines just in time for Kavanaugh and Christine Blasey Ford's hearing. His collection featured jackets and sweaters covered in words including, “PEACE,” “REVOLT,” “HOPE” and “RESIST” to show his support for any and all victims of injustices. (Fisher, Harper's Bazaar). At the finale of the show, Scott took the stage while wearing a white t-shirt printed with, “Tell Your Senator NO On Kavanaugh,” and a phone number, 202-902-7129, that connects voters to Washington D.C..

As the creative director of fashion house Moschino, Scott has over 11 million international followers on social media. With such a large and active following, he chose to politically influence his physical and social media audiences with the messages in his collection and on his shirt, in light of the controversies within the U.S. government. Scott chose celebrity influencers to walk in his show, including rapper Offset who brought his wife, Cardi B to the audience. With 20.5 million followers on social media, Offset’s presence in the show extended Scott’s audience and gave the collection and political message more earned and shared media, by definition according to Regina Luttrell's Social Media: How to Engage, Share, and Connect.

As a result of Offset walking in the show, his wife, Cardi B, watched from the audience and generated show-related content to 36.4 million people.

With Cardi B, Paris Jackson, Gigi Hadid and Tiffany Haddish were seen sitting front row, with 5.1 million, 43.6 million and 4.1 million followers respectively.

In total, Jeremy Scott and Moschino influenced 116.6 million social media users over the course of his fashion show, proving that NYFW's platform impacts politically, socially, and, of course, creatively.

Just a week after his NYFW show, Scott had 679,081 more likes, and 5,336 comments.

To date, September 25, 2018, @itsjeremyscott, has 1,206,554 more likes and 9,158 comments.

Every designer aims for as much publicity for their collection as possible, but Scott wanted more than just his art to be impactful. This year’s fall NYFW showed the activism needed to encourage creatives to speak loudly through their work. With designers like Scott choosing to respond to controversies and including celebrity influencers while doing so, the fashion industry was able to reach more people than ever before. Though this is one of the many times designers have chosen to represent their political views on the runway, Scott’s approach of wearing the phone number of government officials takes creative activism further. With more than 116.6 million followers watching the show, Scott shared his message and not only earn media, but also respect, leadership, and admiration in society.

With the newest allegations against Kavanaugh, his Supreme Court nomination remains in jeopardy. We can thank Jeremy Scott for doing his part in working towards keeping our country safe from inappropriate leadership.

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Matthew Pignataro
Matthew Pignataro
Oct 01, 2018

Vanessa, I think that you said it perfectly with, “Every designer aims for as much publicity for their collection as possible, but Scott wanted more than just his art to be impactful.” Every designer wants his or her new fall or spring line to be a best seller, but I love how Scott wanted so much more. Finding a way to generate activism indirectly through your work is a great skill and Jeremy Scott should be commended for it.

I particularly enjoyed your section on how social media was able to generate so many views. Between Cardi B, Paris Jackson, Gigi Hadid, and Tiffany Hadish there were over 89.2 million people able to watch the show right from their screens.…

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