First Wheelchair Model to Hit the Ukrainian Runway

Alexandra Kutas is paralyzed from the waist down and lives her life in a wheelchair but insists her disability won’t deter her dreams of becoming a model. She made her first modeling debut at Ukraine Fashion Week. She says she wants ALL designer shows to include wheelchair-bound models.

This young model is making her debut at Ukraine Fashion Week despite never being able to walk.

She’s from Kiev, Ukraine, has been featured in several exhibitions and been invited to work as a hostess at Ukraine Fashion Week later this year.

She’s determined and hopes that by working the exclusive event it will open doors for a career in high-end fashion. As well as balancing her modelling career with her day job as a physiologist, she is also fighting for better facilities for wheelchair users.

Alexandra, who suffered a spinal cord injury during birth, said: ‘I was first interested in the idea of becoming a model when I was 16.

‘I was spotted by a photographer when I was in a cafe one day and she invited me to do a shoot – I was so inspired and realized that modelling was what I wanted to do.’

Alexandra adds that she hopes to use her position to change the landscape of the modelling industry for wheelchair users.

‘Because of a birth injury I could never walk and have always been in wheelchair.

‘But I’m hoping that Ukraine Fashion Week will be a chance to meet designers and voice my own concepts.

‘I have so many ideas about using model with disabilities and I have an idea of how it should look.’

Normally I write about Hispanic women and their empowering moves, but this can’t be ignored. Alexandra is making history and making it so people in wheelchairs can feel beautiful too.

This is starting with her empowering women, but this will eventually move to men being a part of this movement as well. She is inspiring others and is the pioneer in this movement.

Her hard work and determination is just the beginning and the results that can come from this. You go girl!

All quotes received from; http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-3218076/Disabled-woman-make-modelling-debut-Ukraine-Fashion-Week.html#ixzz4aIudSWS5

 

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Empowering Doll Line Makes Girls Feel Beautiful in Their Own Skin

$20,000 is a lot of money, and that’s how much this empowering doll line scored on Shark Tank. Angelica and Jason Sweeting appeared on an episode of “Shark Tank” in hopes to get a $200,000 investment and they did. They call their doll line Naturally Perfect Dolls, and they founded them in 2015.

During the episode, the couple told the judges that the doll line came to be after one of their daughters was profusely crying on a car ride home from a book fair. “Finally when she calms down, we say,

‘Hey babe, what’s wrong with you?’” And she says, ‘Dad, I’ll never be beautiful. I need yellow hair and white skin so that way I can be beautiful.’ And we were totally devastated.”

Angelica explained that they saw the typical images of beauty that their child is seeing on television and in toys and began searching for dolls that looked like their daughter and found nothing. So, they created a doll and over time found a change in their daughter’s attitude (Huffington post).Image result for shark tank color girl dolls

This doll line includes four dolls with different hair types, skin shades and facial features that are true to women of color. The company also offers a T-shirt depicting the characters and an affirmation book.

“Naturally Perfect Dolls aims to change the standard of beauty one doll at a time while encouraging self-acceptance, diversity and letting girls know that they can be whatever they want to be.”

On Shark Tank, the judges liked the concept overall, but they were hesitant to invest due to the doll’s high price ($84.99) and the failure of previous multicultural doll lines.

But the couple’s story resonated with judge and FUBU creator Daymond John. He proposed to invest $200,000 at 30% ownership, 60% for the founders and 10% for charity. The Sweetings accepted, ensuring that they’ll be able to mass produce the dolls.

After watching this Shark Tank episode I knew I had to blog about it because two empowering doll stories about making girls feel beautiful is a rare occurrence.

It’s relevant that doll companies have quite a bit to work on when it comes to their dolls and the image they portray to all the different types of girls, but I am glad that people are out there trying to make a difference.

Growing up I had the same feeling about what I looked like, I could NEVER find a doll that looked like me and that made me feel different and not accepted.

At the age of 20 I can finally buy a doll that looks like me, that’s some exciting stuff!!

Quotes for this blog were found on: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/black-doll-line-shark-tank_us_5877a406e4b05b7a465e1d77

Barbie Makes Ashley Graham Doll with Thighs that Touch

Ashley Graham is someone I have previously written about because she is changing the modeling world. She was on the cover of sports illustrated as the first plus size swimsuit model and she has only become more famous since then.

She has made having curves ok, and with the release of her new Barbie she is continuously giving girls a model that shows self-love.

“She had to have her thighs touch,” Ashley said about the doll made in her honor.

“No ands, ifs or buts about it. And I asked for cellulite but obviously plastic and cellulite don’t go hand in hand,” she continued. “It was important that the Barbie resembled me as much as possible. The thighs touching was one way to show young girls that it’s OK for your thighs to touch, despite society saying that a ‘thigh gap’ is more beautiful.”

As a young girl growing up playing with Barbie’s, it’s been a thing that Barbie’s have always had a serious body problem. Their traditional proportions are totally unrealistic, so when girls can’t achieve the kind of body their dolls have, it can obviously be confusing and upsetting.

Barbie’s have been said to be the reason girls have self-confidence issues and eventually having eating disorders. The Barbie’s bodies spread the idea that there’s something wrong with having a body with things that rub together and feet that aren’t constantly molded into high heels (obviously very wrong).

This movement is one I am proud to be able to witness and am over joyed it’s FINALLY happening. Girls need a positive leader such as Ashley because she is changing the world of positive body image and thats a change I am happy to be a part of and continuously support.

If more major corporations and advertisers hear messages that girls and women want to see themselves reflected in photos and on television, maybe they’ll listen like Mattel did with Ashley since her Barbie shoes that all bodies are beautiful, thigh gap or not.

Quotes from Ashley on; http://www.teenvogue.com/story/barbie-makes-ashley-graham-doll-with-touching-thighs

Body Positive Revolution

 

 

The three models who are breaking barriers in this month’s Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue say they are doing so because brands are finally looking beyond the conventional size and age for models.

The model said it is about time brands started paying attention to models who are not stick-thin.

“Nobody’s been listening to us,” Graham said on “GMA.” “I’ve been doing this for 15 years and finally Sports Illustrated has come out, Lane Bryant, ‘Swimsuits for All.’ There’s been so many brands that are finally saying, ‘You know what, we are going to be the pioneers.’”

“We are going to be the ones that say, you know, it doesn’t matter what size you are. It doesn’t matter if you have cellulite. It doesn’t matter if things jiggle where they’re not supposed to. That’s still beautiful,’” she said.

Curvy models such as Ashley Graham and UFC fighter Ronda Rousey are gracing the covers this year of Sports Illustrated’s famous Swimsuit Issue. These supermodels labeled themselves as a plus-size models and are calling this a “moment in history”

“It’s a very, very big stake in the ground saying this is a point in history that we are going to roll forward in a more positive, a more inclusive way on how we see women, images of beauty,” Emme said today on “Good Morning America.” “I think it’s going to reverberate across the industry, whether it’s fashion, toys, magazines.”

Continued in that interview she sais how “It’s a wonderful time in history,” said Emme, known as America’s first plus-size model.

“There’s a whole line of beautiful young ladies right behind Ashley who are not going to make this a trend,” she said of the cover model. “They’re all going to be a part of this beautiful momentum, rolling forward, for women and girls and, quite frankly, for the men who love them.”

In addition to the barrier-breaking Sports Illustrated covers, Emme says another important milestone occurred earlier this year with the debut of Barbie’s Fashionista line, which features dolls in all different shapes and colors.

“I think it starts very young and I think it starts within the families, the mothers feeling better about themselves and the grandmothers not rolling forward with the word body image,” Emme said. “I think that the conversations around the kitchen table are really, really important for girls to not hear that only one ideal of beauty is the one that’s accepted.”