Franca Sozzani on Cannes Fashion show Fashion for Relief Japan

Got this post from Vogue Italia Just thought I'd share it with ya's sort of refreshing to hear you know :)

After watching the fashion show for Fashion For Relief Japan in Cannes (a charity show organized by Naomi Campbell in support of the Red Cross) I realized that when you see beautiful women, real women, walking down the runway, women of all ages, with their unique personality and a feminine and appealing attitude, the show becomes quite another thing. You never get tired, or bored. You appreciate the clothes and find them believable. You look at the faces, the expressions, the vitality of their gaze, and these women-models are not just beautiful, but sensuous and real.

And you recall those sad, empty eyes, those Morticia-like expressions you usually see on the catwalk, apart from a few exceptions, and feel that everything is changing and that this type of beauty is probably coming to an end. Naomi Campbell, Yasmin Le Bon, Karolina Kurkova, Afef Jnifen, Nadege du Bospertus, Nadja Auermann, Rosario Dawson, Barbara Becker, Eva Riccobono, and also "ordinary" women sporting their curves with the ease and lightness that come from their inner beauty.

Great, marvelous Jane Fonda, indestructible at her age, full of charm and class. Unique. And amusing and cheerful women like Grace Hightower, Robert De Niro’s wife who, smiling and relaxed, walked down the runway swaying her hips. And many more: beautiful, unique, special, inimitable.

Here are the two words that should be reintroduced in the world of runways: cheerfulness and uniqueness. While, instead, we are forced to watch the sad monotony of the same attitude, show after show, with the same girls looking all similar. Fashion is fun, fashion is joy. Yet backstage you see these signs for the models, saying “Don't smile". Maybe it’s not chic enough? Does it break the model’s concentration? Or take the glamour away? Yet I believe that smiling, besides providing a sunnier expression, also puts you in an excellent mood, maybe also when there’s nothing to be happy about, looking at those clothes!

Monday night we were given a life lesson. We learned that by persistently taking everything so seriously we have achieved body and mood standardization, with due – and few - exceptions. You wonder what happened to those women we used to admire the beginning of the '90s, like Cindy Crawford, Claudia Schiffer, Christy Turlington, Linda Evangelista, Kristen McMenamy, Amber Valletta. They looked womanly even if they were still girls, they moved like real women, sensuous and feminine, and not with their arms dangling and blank eyes.

What happened to these women? Why has scouting beautiful women become so hard? Or, like many of you often ask me, is it fashion designers who adjust to this type of girls, or just require them that way? I don’t know. What I do know is that we are at the start of a new decade and usually things change, sometimes for the better. We need to have the courage to overturn preset standards, and everyone will do the same. We only have to make a decision. One of us, and everybody will follow suit. Who will be the first?

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