The history-making hijabi model Halima Aden has made her catwalk debut at Milan Fashion week.
Fresh from modelling for Yeezy Season 5 in New York, as well as being signed by major modelling agency IMG, the 19-year-old Somali-American walked for Alberta Ferretti on the opening day of shows.
Aden first hit the headlines in November when she became the first Miss USA contestant to wear a hijab and burkini.
“Embracing culture and diversity to break norms and change the thinking of modern-day fashion with Halima Aden,” the fashion house wrote in a picture of the model on Instagram.
It may not have been Aden’s first catwalk show following her debut at Yeezy - an edgy label known for making headlines with its casting choices - but it was her first for a major established fashion house.
Wearing a long black and navy striped coat with waist belt from the Venice-inspired collection, Aden appeared alongside established names including Gigi and Bella Hadid, Stella Maxwell, Sara Sampaio and Elsa Hosk.
“A lot of people will look at you and will fail to see your beauty because you’re covered up and they’re not used to it,” Aden told KARE-11 during the miss USA pageant. “So growing up, I just had to work on my people skills and give people a chance to really know me besides the clothing.”
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During New York Fashion Week, many designers used creative ways to demonstrate their opposition to the presidency of Donald Trump – a man widely accused of Islamophobia during his campaign and who went ahead with his election promise to impose a travel ban on seven Muslim-majority countries.
Along with their defiant protestation, it’s encouraging to see big name designers on the international stage move confidently towards inclusivity and diversity while focusing on fashion.
Lets hope we’ll see Aden on many more catwalks to come.