Until Inclusivity Is No Longer Revolutionary
By Karlee Hehemann
Now is the time for more moments that help everyone see themselves in fashion. More magazine covers with moms breastfeeding, more runways that are wheelchair accessible, more photoshoots with models wearing hijabs, more billboards showing people of all sizes, races, genders, sexualities, ages, religions, and abilities.
We celebrate these moments and champion more of them. But, we want to live in a fashion future where inclusivity is not revolutionary. It’s just… normal.
What started out as a mission to become the world’s most inclusive fashion brand, serving sizes 00 to 40, quickly became a mission to do much more. As we broadened, it already felt too narrow.
Access for all couldn’t end with US.
Embracing this mission is vulnerable. It means a constant self-accountability that goes into every new collection, campaign, and program, asking ourselves, “How can we be a brand that’s living up to our name and setting a ‘Universal Standard’?”
The obvious reality? One brand cannot change the entire industry alone.
We have to work with other brands who see the future as we do... We have to work together to bring the future of fashion to the present.
Introducing Erdem x Universal Standard
A collaboration that shows exactly what inclusive fashion looks like in full bloom. Available in the world's most inclusive size range: 00 to 40.
This eight-piece, thoughtfully-curated, denim-driven collection combines Erdem’s signature language of femininity with timeless elements that have become synonymous with Universal Standard. Armed with Erdem’s commitment to challenging what boundaries exist in fashion, we created a line that demonstrates the strong, delicate features of florals and the utilitarian ease of denim. Because high-fashion clothing is something that can, and should, be for all.
“There’s a beautiful universality in denim and with careful design you can achieve a wonderful permanence,” says Erdem Moralıoğlu MBE. He continues, “Fashion for everyone means designing consciously beyond the boundaries of shape or trend.”
This collection exists to prove that unifying fashion can be done beautifully when visions align and style, not size, is the only focus.
“We want the industry to keep witnessing that size equality is the only way forward,” says Alexandra Waldman, Universal Standard co-founder, and Chief Creative Officer. “Access for all doesn’t end with US. Together with Erdem, we aim to change the way fashion looks for all of US, and the way we look at fashion."
At the root of Erdem x Universal Standard, is a moment where more people can experience the freedom of looking at high-fashion designs, prints and textures, and seeing themselves reflected back.
This is our next collective step forward on the road to a new normal.
We’re not done challenging ourselves and the industry we inhabit. With partners like Erdem by our side, we can embrace every boundary as we look forward, together. This is just a moment, among many, until inclusivity is no longer revolutionary.
We hope that the Erdem x Universal Standard collection honors our promise to always be pushing the industry towards inclusivity, so that everyone can experience true Fashion Freedom.
This is for all of US. As we are.
We brought together industry influencers, tastemakers, editors, and experts to talk about the importance of inclusivity and accessibility in fashion — and why the Erdem x Universal Standard collaboration is just the beginning of an industry-wide shift that's been a long time coming.