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Generation Genderless - Issue #3

Generation Genderless
Generation Genderless
Hi - my name is Kris Harrington, CEO and Creative Director of Kris Harring Apparel Group. We specialize in gender-inclusive fashion design and product development.
Generation Genderless is your guide to the top news and insights covering gender equity and society within the fashion industry and beyond.

Industry News
Indya Moore and Tommy Hilfiger Release Non-gendered Capsule Collection
Indya Moore, the nonbinary actor, and activist has co-designed a capsule collection with Tommy Hilfiger called Tommy x Indya.
The size-inclusive, non-gendered designs are part of Hilfiger’s People’s Place Program, a three-pillared platform with the mission of advancing representation in fashion and beyond. The summer pre-fall 2021 Tommy x Indya capsule will be available in the U.S., Brazil, and Europe beginning Tuesday on tommy.com as well as at select locations globally.
Moore, who starred in the FX series “Pose,” said they’ve never designed apparel before and jumped at the opportunity.
“Of course, I would always be interested in a fashion brand like Tommy,” said Moore, 26, in a telephone interview. “It’s a pretty incredible opportunity. Being invited to come on the team for who I am. Tommy knows who I am, they know what I’m about and what I stand for…they wanted me because of who I am and how I show up,” said Moore, who began their career as a model at age 15 while they were moving through foster homes and enduring bullying at school. After dropping out in the 10th grade (and eventually earning a general equivalency diploma), Moore worked various photoshoots for the likes of Dior and Gucci. They were the first trans person to be featured on the cover of Elle magazine and were selected by Time Magazine for its 2019 List of 100 Most Influential People. (Read More)
Converse X Telfar Adds a Twist on Basketball Style
After the successful drop of the Converse X SOULGOODS collection, Converse is back with another partnership. This time around, it has partnered with Telfar Clemens. The duo introduces the Converse X Telfar collection.
Telfar, a Liberian-American fashion designer, is also a DJ and the founder of TELFAR, a genderless fashion label. With the partnership, Converse and Telfar have introduced a unisex twist on a basketball style. The aim of the collection is to bring a new community into the world of sport.
The collection carries on the message of inclusivity, continuing from the Converse X Pride drop. Telfar is known for his evocative collections and brings that to the fore again for the Converse X Telfar drop.
Reimagining the classic Pro Leather sneaker, it has been reinterpreted for a new generation. As a result, two new silhouettes are introduced, the All-Star Slide and the Pro Leather Slip-On. For the All-Star Slide, it features a clean and casual slip-on sandal. Additionally, the design applies a hoops-inspired aesthetic. This is brought to the fore with a bold graphic and contrasting details.
The slip-on has the Box Star graphic on the front, with EVA foam cushioning for all-day comfort. Furthermore, it has a fine rubber mould strap and corduroy ribbing texture on the base. (Read More)
Fashion Tech
Shuttered fitting rooms anger shoppers and boost returns. How these retailers are trying to fix that
On a recent trip to the fast-fashion retailer Zara, 20-year-old Katherine Hearden loaded up on tops, shorts, and dresses in multiple sizes.
With Zara’s dressing rooms still closed due to Covid-related restrictions, she knew she wasn’t going to be able to try anything on in that store. So instead, Hearden checked out and schlepped across the street with her dad to another department store, where she grabbed a random pair of jeans and popped into an open fitting room. Her plan all along was to use this store to try on her Zara picks and, unabashedly, send her dad back to Zara to return what she wasn’t going to keep.
“My poor dad,” said Hearden, a student at Boston College, in an interview. “We make him wait in lines everywhere we go.”
Hearden’s experience underscores a bigger dilemma that clothing companies have been grappling with for years, but one that was specially illuminated during the pandemic. Retailers from Gap to Lululemon to American Eagle had to close stores to customers for a number of weeks last spring. And even as clothing stores began to reopen, many companies still opted to keep fitting rooms closed, in an attempt to prevent the spread of Covid. Some of them, like Zara’s, remain closed in parts of the United States.
The headaches for consumers are somewhat obvious: Not being able to try on items in stores means potentially stocking up on extra sizes, like Hearden did, to later see what works at home. Shoppers tend to employ a similar strategy when looking for clothes or shoes online — they’ll buy a dress in two or even three sizes — which has increasingly happened over the course of the health crisis. For businesses, this chain of events sends return rates skyrocketing. And that comes with a cost. With the Covid pandemic serving as somewhat of a wake-up call, retailers including the biggest in the country, Walmart, are looking for ways to solve the fitting-room dilemma.
Consumers returned roughly $428 billion in merchandise last year, or about 10.6% of total retail sales in the U.S., according to a study by the National Retail Federation. Clothing made up about 12.2% of that, the NRF said, adding that for every $1 billion in sales, the average retailer incurs $106 million in merchandise returns. (Read More)
Data
  • How Can the Apparel Industry Leverage Data for Supply Chain Sustainability: Data Consolidation: Is Technology the Solution? While the apparel industry is one of the most data-intensive, most of this data is manually maintained and in an inconsistent format. The reality is that all this data doesn’t matter if it is not stitched together to analyze and glean actionable insights. Here’s where technology can help. Platform-based solutions, like Serai, can help companies to digitize and make their supply chain data actionable. Brands and manufacturers can upload and make sense of vast amounts of supply chain data including the origins of raw materials, garment production, and shipment and order details. Having all this data in one place is powerful – companies can easily look up where a specific fabric is sourced from, or where it was produced. They can see the ESG credentials of the participants in their supply chain. In addition to demonstrating ESG commitments, this knowledge will also help businesses identify inefficiencies in their supply chain. For example, they’ll be able to get valuable insights into areas such as consumption of water, energy, and greenhouse gas, or man-hours spent throughout the various stages in the supply chain. (Indian Retailer)
  • Gen Z: The label-less generation and the future of data: Gen Z has an estimated $143 billion in direct buying power, and yet almost half of those young consumers aren’t old enough to drive a car. The youngest are in grade school while the oldest are just beginning to graduate from college. Accounting for approximately 32% of the world’s population, Gen Z—defined as being born from the mid-to-late 1990s to the early 2010s—is emerging as the world’s largest and most diverse generation, born into a world of seismic social change. For these digital natives, “on-demand” is not a buzzword. It is a mode of existence. Known for their work ethic, technology prowess and passion for action, this is a generation that eschews labels, preferring instead to move fluidly. As they come into their own as consumers, employees and citizens, it is imperative for marketers to understand what motivates and drives them. But what does the future of data look like when the people who will be shaping it don’t want to be defined? Is it even possible to build brand loyalty among them? To answer these questions, The Female Quotient partnered with Influential and IRI who used their Product Pacesetters insights and myriad data assets to dig deeper. Here’s what we found: (Adage)
Culture
  • Starting in the fall, Philadelphia schools will have gender-neutral bathrooms in every building: Starting in the 2021-2022 school year, every building in Philadelphia School District will have at least one single-stall gender-neutral bathroom.While touted as a major victory for trans rights in schools, advocates say the district buildings could have been doing this for the last five years. “I’m a non-binary person and for me, going out in public and having to use a public restroom can be anxiety-inducing,” said Maddie Luebbert, an English teacher in the district. “The major difference will be printing out a new sign and taping it over the boys and girls sign.” The School District of Philadelphia started to do that in some buildings in 2016 when it passed policy 252 outlining trans students’ rights, which included having a gender-neutral bathroom if a child needs one. (ABC News)
  • How American parents became obsessed with gender: When I was pregnant with my first child, I agonized over my decision to find out the sex. I knew that anatomy does not indicate gender identity, but I was also impatient, ready for some forecast, however unreliable, of what the future might hold for me as a mother. Having grown up as a girl in America, I knew what gendered wars I might be up against if I were to have a daughter. I wanted to prepare myself for the fight. At my second-trimester ultrasound, I decided to find out. But then things got weird. Nancy, the bubbly sonogram technician, projected the inside of me on a screen that covered an entire wall, dimming the lights, like we were in a movie theater. She kept saying, “That’s a cute baby!” I had no idea what she was looking at as she furiously clicked and numbered and measured different parts of the fuzzy gray blob on the screen. With much excitement, she proclaimed the fetus was a girl. She then printed a three-foot ream of black-and-white pictures, each with an unidentifiable area circled, which she folded and tucked into a white envelope with gold writing that reminded me, again, It’s a Girl! (Vox)
News from Around the World
  • Fight for Genderless Passports taken to the Supreme Court (UK): Britons should be allowed to state their gender as X on their passports instead of just male or female, the Supreme Court will hear today. Lawyers for Christie Elan-Cane, who identifies as non-gendered, will ask the court to declare that a ban on “X passports” is a breach of human rights. The legal challenge has gone to the top bench after two lower courts ruled that the government’s position was lawful. The Court of Appeal ruled last year that policy requiring British passports to have a male or female gender category did not breach Elan-Cane’s rights, supporting a High Court ruling in 2018. The judges did acknowledge that the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) guaranteed a right to respect for non-gendered identity. (The Times UK)
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Generation Genderless is a free newsletter that I curate on my own time to spread awareness about issues related to gender around the world. If you like what you’ve read and would like to support Generation Genderless, please consider forwarding this newsletter to a friend or colleague or purchasing our merch to support Gender Inclusive design.
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Generation Genderless
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