how 8 models of the moment celebrated international women's day

Fresh from walking in Kenzo's celebrations of womanhood, Dilone, Katherine, Damaris, Molly and more share their thoughts on what it means to be a woman today, straight up.

15 March 2016, 1:40pm

Fittingly presented on International Women's Day, Kenzo fall/winter 16 drew inspiration from the Japanese heroines of Carol Lim and Humberto Leon's childhood. Carol and Humberto celebrated a multifaceted woman this season, showing a mix of crazy kawaii patterns, baroque silhouettes, and ecclesiastic dresses -- irreverent, rebellious and feminine. i-D's Casting Director Angus Munro described Kenzo fall/winter 16 as "the most complete and on-point combination of models and looks that we worked on over the season." As the Generation-mixed show soundtrack faded, i-D met the models to get their thoughts on being a women in 2016.

Frederikke Sofie, 19

What does International Women's Day mean to you?
It reminds me of this time last year, when I opened the Céline show -- everyone was celebrating International Women's Day. It was really special for me, I was opening a show and I was really proud. Today I'm reliving that feeling and it's great.

What does feminism mean to you?
The whole debate around the importance of feminism is misplaced at the moment. As long as feminism gives a voice to all women and doesn't get trapped in debates that exclude, it's extremely important to defend it.

Do you consider yourself a feminist?
Yes I think so, but I also understand how men can feel disorientated by feminism when it is not about egalitarian rhetoric and more about women claiming power over men. So, I'm feminist, but most importantly, I'm for equality.

What's the best thing about being a woman in 2016?
A women can be many things at once and it's great! All women can relate to this in one way or another.

What advice would you give to the next generations?
Have confidence in yourself!

Dilone Janiece, 21

What does International Women's Day mean to you?
It's extremely important! I've spent the day on Facetime with all my sisters wishing them a happy International Women's Day. It's a beautiful day and I'm really proud to be modeling today and I'm also proud to be a women. There is a long way to go in defending women's rights and we need to continue the fight and continue to change things.

If you could change one thing about the world what would it be and why?
It's fundamental that women are paid the same as men. It's crazy that there is still a gender pay gap in 2016. In fashion, we are actually pretty lucky in relation to this, but it really is one of the only industries which pays women as much (if not more) than men.

Could and should fashion do more?
I think that designers should follow their instincts and not be restricted by female stereotypes. What's amazing about fashion is that each designer proposes a new interpretation of a women. She can be a tomboy, elegant, or somewhere in between. Fashion creates this liberty, and it's really great.

Kenzo is presenting a women both crazy and wise at the same time.
Yes, she's superb! By the way, if all the shirts have gone missing at the end of the show, it's because I couldn't stop myself from taking them! Only kidding!

What advice would you give the next generation?
I would tell them to express themselves and don't be afraid to put themselves out there. I would also encourage them to follow their emotions, if the are happy to live it to the max and if they are sad, to live it too. Social media forces us to present a façade of always being happy, but it's not the reality. Live to the max and forget the rest.

Molly Bair, 18

What's the best thing about being a woman in 2016?
I think women should be able to achieve whatever they want to without having to face so many obstacles just because of their gender. I am very pleased to live at a time where people start to understand that. There is still a lot to do about women's rights but I feel like mindsets are changing and that the fight is getting somewhere. Feminism is super strong today and a lot more people gather around it, which is amazing.

Do you think fashion can play a role in feminism?
Yes totally, and on different levels. As a model, my femininity changes everyday as I embody a new woman every time I walk a show. It is a great experience each time. And fashion proves we can be a woman in many different ways.

What advice would you give to the next generations of women?
If you have a dream, just follow it and don't let anyone destroy it.

Odette and Lia Pavlova, 21

How does it feel walking with your sister?
Odette: It is great. There is something reassuring about being able to be with a part of your family when your are far from home.
Lia: It is not always like that so I guess we appreciate it when it is the case.

What does International Women's Day mean to you?
Odette: We celebrate while we work.
Lia: It is the occasion to say to all the women of our life that we love them and that they are beautiful.

If you could change one thing about the world what would it be and why?
Odette: We need to start treating women equally to men. It is as simple as that.

If you had to say something to the next generations, what would it be?
Lia: Keep close to your family. It is where your roots are. We tend to forget that nowadays. 

Greta Varlese, 17

What does International Women's Day mean to you?
It is an important one. There are still a lot of countries where it is super complicated to be a woman. Just in terms of salary, women are still less paid than men even if they fight for it to change. So I think it is important to give a day a year to think and talk about all what needs to be done.

Modeling is a rare anomaly.
Yes it is. It is probably the industry in which women are best treated actually.

Would you call yourself a feminist?
Not really. It is not a reflex for me even if it does concern and touch me.

Did fashion help you to embrace your femininity?
It helps me to become a different women, actually. In the sense that I turn into a different woman at every show. Sometimes I can be dark, sometimes more wise or more sexy. It depends of the show, the hair and make-up. I explore a lot of different sides of personality like that.

Does fashion help create new forms of femininity?
Yes completely. Fashion should and does create other definitions of femininity so everyone can project themselves in it. Fashion should always get away from feminine stereotypes, we would get bored otherwise. 

Katie Moore, 18 

What does International Women's Day mean to you?
I think it is a really important day and people tend to forget that a lot of women are still victims of violence and discrimination. Women are superheroes, they have to face obstacles every single day and I think it is important to have a day to remember that.

What does feminism mean to you?
I am a feminist on certain points but there are some parts of feminism that bother me. I think it is important feminism remains egalitarian and I don't think it is right to claim the power of women over men. It is misinterpretation according to me.

Do you think women are free today?
Yes, more and more and I think new generations will gain more freedom. We'll fight for it. 

Damaris Goddrie, 18

What does International Women's Day mean to you?
It is a beautiful day. I am a woman and another woman gave me life! So today is about life also. And my job as a model makes me definitely feel like a woman as well.

If you could change one thing about the world what would it be and why?
There are so many things to change. It is still very hard to be a woman in some parts of the world. Equality between men and women should be normality today.

Would you call yourself a feminist?
Yes and no. I would call myself an egalitarian more than anything.

Kenzo's new collection presents a plural woman, both wise and rebel, audacious and feminine. Are you a bit like that too?
Yes it is exactly what I am, too. There is something very cute and kawaii about this collection. Something irreverent also. It is about the freedom of being who you want to be.

What is the best part about being a woman in 2016?
Giving life!


Text Micha Barban-Dangerfield
Photography Léon Prost

Molly Bair
damaris goddrie
greta varlese
fall/winter 16
lia pavlova
odette pavlova
autumn/winter 16
frederikke sofie
dilone janiece
katherine moore