Nicole Doswell is a former modeling agent and current fashion publicist and producer at The Riviere Agency. Her goal is to show people that fashion really can have a heart and soul.

At NYFW, #DiversityMatters

Unfortunately, diversity is something that has not always existed on the NYFW runways This season, designers made it a mission to increase diversity not only in skin tone, but also in size, casting models of all religious backgrounds and figures. They made a statement that what makes America beautiful and “great” is our differences .. and the love that share for each other..

what makes America beautiful and “great” is our differences

Here are 9 NYFW designers, whose love for diversity warmed our hearts.

1. Vivi Zubedi was one of two designers at the Indonesian Diversity runway show that showcased their collections with all-Hijabi models (several of which were muslim and immigrants), a bold statement given our current political climate and the Islamophobia that still exists in America.

Several of the abbayas (a traditional Muslim outerwear piece) were adorned by the message “All Colors Matters” to exemplify the translation from other languages to English; a test that many immigrants to the US face daily.

2. Dian Pelangi also showed at Indonesian Diversity’s runway show. Dian Pelangi is another Indonesian designer who shows that all hijabs are not made equal, diverging from the traditional form and showcasing shapes and colors that wowed the audience.

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The Indonesian Diversity platform not only allowed for hijabs to be seen on the runway once again, but also for diversity in designers.

Other Indonesian designers included Melia Wijaya, Catherine Njoo (photo below), Barli Asmara, and handbag designer Doris Dorthea.

And as the icing on the diveristy cake was that all the models wore Indonesian Halal makeup brand Wardah.

3. Catherine Njoo showed her pride in the inspiration of her headpieces (by Grace Liam). This collection was inspired by Legong, a refined dance form characterized by intricate finger movements, complicated footwork, and expressive gestures and facial expressions.

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But Indonesian Diveristy designers weren’t the only ones to come from across the seas to conquer NYFW.

4. Cindy Montiero – Cape Verdean designer Cindy Montiero’s show was roughly 90% minority models. A woman “of color” herself, Cindy wanted to represent her women and show that you are beautiful no matter what your ethnic background.

5. Vaishali S. – Indian designer Vaishali also casted with a mission of diversity; something that makes sense, as India is a place of various complexions.

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6. Runa Ray – Another Indian designer who also has a love for diversity, but also for saving the planet. Runa showed a sustainable collection and adorned each seat with seed pencils and paper that could be planted after the show. She didn’t just make a commitment to a beautiful show, but a more beautiful earth.

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7. Dan Liu is diversity personified. This Japanese/Chinese/Canadian has a flare for theatrics and is known for putting on quite a show. This season his casting of black and Asian models was extremely welcomed at Skylight Clarkson Square, showing to a packed house. Dan Liu dreams of dressing all the beautiful women of the world.

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8. Galtiscopio was one of many designers who brought hip hop into their show: other shows were Fenty X Puma, The Blondes, Philipp Plein, and others.

At Galtiscopio’s show, they had two musical performances: one from Diddy’s musical prodigy and son, Christian Combs, and another from R&B star Ray J. While. The luxury line is based in Paris, and the hip hop collaboration made major sense, as their watch line has a huge following in the hip hop community.

Rumor has it that Galtiscopio will soon be in a collaboration with young fashion icon and artist Christian Combs.

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Not all designers on a mission for diversity were from overseas; some of the them were born and raised right here in America, like Leanne Marshall from California.

9. Leanne Marshall is known for winning Season 5 of Project Runway, dressing celebs on the red carpet, and making brides across America beautiful. At this New York Fashion Week she, wanted to show her commitment to dressing real women of different shapes and sizes.

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#DiversityMatters

Yay for diversity!

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With love,

FWO