Rosemary Mac Cabe

Hemlines, heels and haute couture – your daily dose

Debenhams embraces diversity with new campaign

Debenhams’ latest campaign includes young and old, black and white, an amputee and a Paralympian – but will this change stick?

Tue, Apr 23, 2013, 07:30


Debenhams has released brand new imagery for its latest campaign that features a full array of shapes, sizes, ethnicities, ages and bodies, from a 69-year-old woman to an amputee and a Paralympic athlete.

This isn’t anything remarkably new from Debenhams; Marks & Spencer has gone down the route of diversity in several of its campaigns, and a TV programme searching for an amputee model was aired on Channel 4 a few years back. But will it make any difference?

What will really be the proof of the pudding is whether or not Debenhams will keep this up. M&S has embraced diversity on the regular, but diversity with quite a narrow definition, which is somewhat oxymoronic. In M&S’s books, Twiggy’s role is as the older model, Myleene Klass’s is as the curvy (?!) model. But that’s pretty much as far as it goes - age and “curves” notwithstanding, M&S’s models are all beautiful and, y’know, modelesque.

Attempts to make waves in the fashion industry will always be welcomed; as Caroline Issa said, it’s a far from perfect place. But it’ll be a long wait to see if these waves are freak weather incidents, or serious tidal shifts.

I also always feel sorry for the plus-size model who gets plonked beside the teeny tiny model. Can’t we just get two average-sized girls and show how average can be beautiful too? What about the size 10 to 12 girls with no boobs?

Sign In

Forgot Password?

Sign Up

The name that will appear beside your comments.

Have an account? Sign In

Forgot Password?

Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In or Sign Up

Thank you

You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.

Hello, .

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

Thank you for registering. Please check your email for the activation code.

We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 10 days from the date of publication.