EXCLUSIVE: Naomi Campbell hits back at critics of her new PrettyLittleThing range insisting ‘fashion shouldn’t discriminate’
Naomi Campbell has hit back at critics of her collaboration with online brand PrettyLittleThing, insisting ‘fashion shouldn’t discriminate.’
As she unveiled her new 90-piece collection, where she took to the catwalk in New York on Tuesday wearing a see-through silver dress priced at £85, the supermodel vowed to ignore the snobbery towards ‘fast fashion’, insisting outside influences have never impacted her decisions as she says she will spearhead positive change in the industry.
In an exclusive interview with MailOnline Naomi, who has worked with prestigious fashion houses such as Prada, Burberry and Saint Laurent, revealed a major factor behind the surprise deal with PLT and the fashion firm’s owner Umar Kamani was her desire to design her own clothes, claiming fashion brands don’t usually give models the opportunity, favouring celebrity names instead.
When her collaboration, which is priced between £10 to £150 and comes in sizes 4-30, launched in July she was hit with negative reaction from critics who claimed she was putting her reputation on the line by fronting a campaign for the brand which often emulates designer looks at a cheaper cost.
Naomi said: ‘I feel this collection was fun, chic, sexy, vibrant, inclusive, and fashion should not discriminate… who’s to say that PrettyLittleThing are not going to continue working with young creatives and leading and changing into sustainability, who knows. New beginnings.’
The mother-of-two says working with PrettyLittleThing has been an empowering experience following decades of wearing the designs of other fashion houses as she becomes the changing face of a new era.
She added: ‘I have worked for years for everybody else. It’s nice to do something for me.
‘Whenever they think of working with someone, they never come to the actual models, they usually go to the celebrities.
‘There are a few other models that have done fast fashion, and they were totally praised and adored and are loved.
‘I don’t think about other people when I say yes to something. If I understand it and I see what it can be then that’s how I commit to the things I do.’
Asked if she thinks there could be a second collection, she quipped: ‘I am going wherever Umar goes now…
‘But I’m always nervous when I do anything publicly… I am satisfied but now let’s see how the sales go. From A-Z… I care.’
The supermodel launched her range at the Cipriani venue in Manhattan in front of A-list guests including Emily Ratajkowski, Winnie Harlow, and Julia Fox, closing the show in the frock which she created alongside Nigerian rising designer Victor Anate and Jamaica-bred Edvin Thompson.
The show began an hour later than schedule, The range, complete with tailored blazer suits, sparkling gold and silver dresses, and statement coats, including a standout leather trench worn by guest Julia Fox, could have easily been mistaken for ‘high end’ fashion pieces.
Paying close attention to inclusivity, the lineup of jaw-dropping models featured women of different shapes and sizes and ethnicities.
Naomi, known as one of the original four Supermodels, left the room in awe as she closed the show wearing a dress that showcased her beautifully statuesque figure, floating across the runway with a walk that has been perfected during years of Fashion Week displays.
Despite her five-decade career in fashion and oozing confidence, Naomi admits to still suffer from nerves before runway shows but there was no sign of any anxiety as she glided across the catwalk on Tuesday evening.
Naomi, who has modelled for Prada, Yves Saint Laurent and Burberry, and became the first black model to star on the cover of fashion bible British Vogue in 1987, insists working with close friend Umar, whose family own the Boohoo Group, and PLT’s young creators will enhance her engagement with a new generation of fashionistas.
And she hopes her new designs, which have been perfectly created for the upcoming festive season, will help make people ‘feel good’ post-pandemic.
She explained: ‘Umar and I met once my daughter was born.
‘After what people have gone through these past few years, they want to enjoy themselves and look and feel good.’
The supermodel, who says she ’embraces’ new challenges, welcomed her first baby, a daughter in 2021 closely followed by a son in June of this year.
And she reveals her line with PLT has piqued the interest of her friends with teenage children, who hoped for an invite to Tuesday’s glamorous New York event.
Naomi continued: ‘The last few days my friends have been calling me up from all over the world, Rome, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, ‘oh my daughter is going to be in New York, please can she come’… the parents were calling me. I was like ‘I haven’t heard from you in a long time.’ It was great.
‘It was a learning experience and I love to do these learning experiences, that’s what life is about, challenges, challenges, I embrace challenges.’
The London-born star will soon be appearing on AppleTV+ documentary The Super Models alongside fellow catwalk icons Cindy Crawford, Linda Evangelista, and Christy Turlington.
She admits making the show was ’emotional’ and fans will be pleased by the final result.
Naomi added: ‘It was emotional making the show… you’ll see.
‘It shows part of my career. You can only fit so much in four episodes; it was a lot of fun.’
Naomi Campbell’s collection with PrettyLittleThing is available to buy online now.