All Walks Beyond the Catwalk is an initiative founded by Caryn Franklin, Debra Bourne and Erin O’Connor working with influential catwalk designers, top industry creatives and fashion students and their colleges to challenge the fashion industry’s dependence on unachievable and limited body and beauty ideals.

By highlighting the responsibility our industry has to recognise the psychological impact of its messaging upon the minds of young women and men, we believe we can encourage a shift towards a more ethical position.

We call for racial, age and size diversity in our imagery; Design training that accommodates all bodies; Gender enlightened thinking that empowers young women and of course young men.

We believe that diversity in front of the lens and behind it is crucial for emotionally considerate practice.

We are active through three main channels…

Consumer and Trade Facing Press Campaigns

We create press campaigns to highlight the impact of imagery and its far reaching effects. We have featured in national and international news and current affairs as well as lifestyle print journalism and TV.

See Campaigns here.

Advocacy

We contribute to a variety of parliamentarian campaigns and initiatives on how diversity and the beauty of individuality can make an impact in the wider culture and influence self-esteem and well-being. These initiatives have been chaired by former Govt. Minister for Equalities Lynne Featherstone. MP Caroline Nokes and Jo Swinson, MP current Minister for Equalities.We co produced the first Body Confidence Awards from Parliament April 2012. The next one is scheduled for Autumn 2014.

See Advocacy here.

Education

We created the Diversity Network which operates from the heart of Edinburgh College of Art and is lead by Director Mal Burkinshaw whose enlightened teaching practice has been leading the way in education.We lecture across the UK, empowering undergraduates to change practice within their chosen field by practicing the following…

  • Designing for live bodies of different shapes and sizes as well as immoveable bust stands who cannot give feedback or move and models who are paid to remain still and silent.
  • Considering the impact their imagery will have upon the self-esteem of women and increasingly men if it is always focused onĀ  unachievable beauty and body ideals.
  • Speaking out when models are treated unkindly or casting favours only one body or beauty ideal, when a diverse rang of models would be more effective.
  • Challenging the default setting of highly sexualised portrayal of young women featured in fashion imagery.

See Education here.

All Walks Beyond the Catwalk is a voluntary organisation that recognises the power the fashion industry has to communicate positive messages to women and men about their bodies and acts. Small steps, big ideas. We are delighted to see that our position is influencing brands as diverse as Lanvin and M&S

Founders Caryn Franklin, Debra Bourne and Erin O’Connor on set with Rankin at London fashion Week for the campaign SNAPPED. Photography by Alistair Guy.

You can see all our activities listed on Timeline.