Supermodels who parade at New York Fashion Week traditionally fit certain stereotypes, but a model with Down syndrome is now being joined by little people in order to defy those assumptions. In an era where bullying and lack of acceptance have become topics for increasingly heated debates, actress Jamie Brewer is proud to make a difference as a role model for others with Down syndrome, reported ABC News.
Jamie also is known for her role in American Horror Story, and she revealed how she developed the courage that she evidences in breaking barriers.
“Embrace the fear and go for it. That’s what I do. I don’t run from it, I embrace the fear.”
When it comes to facing fear, her TV role has required zombie attacks and car escapes. But the challenge of achieving a place in fashion history as the first model with Down syndrome to strut down the catwalk surpassed all those fictional moments, said Brewer.
Credit for the concept goes to designer Carrie Hammer, who chose 12 women to defy fashion stereotypes. Called “Role Models Not Runway Models,” the show included models ranging from computer programmers to bankers. But it was Jamie who became the breakout star, said Carrie.
“Jamie is an incredible actress and also an activist, an artist and a writer who just happens to have Down syndrome… but that doesn’t define her. She’s an incredible role model for many, many people.”
In addition to her Fashion Week success, Jamie has become an activist for people with disabilities.
“I’m a huge advocate for individuals with disabilities,” said Jamie. “Changing the minds of individuals [so they] get a better understanding of individuals that do have disabilities.”
And she’s not alone in challenging fashion stereotypes. For the first time, little people are modeling at Fashion Week, revealed Entertainment Tonight.
“It’s little people getting to be models for the first time, which is so exciting,” commented model Sarah Folkins. “I think that’s very refreshing.”
By expanding the criteria for women who model at Fashion Week, the fashion world can realistically showcase the variety of body types, said model Colleen Theriault.
“I don’t think all models need to be a certain height or certain weight because there are different people out there that are different sizes. And it should show that you don’t have to have this perfect, skinny body and be a certain height to model somebody’s clothes.”
Other inspiring women include Carrie Hammer’s friend Danielle Sheypuk, a doctor who uses a wheelchair.
But this doesn’t mean that tall, slim models are being booted out to make room for diversity. As the Inquisitr reported, uber-slender Kendall Jenner is an aspiring supermodel who already has succeeded in several fashion shows.
She’s so determined to succeed that she asked her family to stay away from her fashion shows so that the lion’s share of media attention can focus on her catwalk purr.
[Photo By Paula Bronstein/Getty Images]