Many fashion designers are making a concerted effort to feature more unique models in their ad campaigns.
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Ellie Goldstein is an 18 year old from Essex, England who has always had a talent for lighting up the stage. She loves theater and is currently enrolled in a performing arts course at college, but her true passion is modeling. Ellie was born with Down syndrome, so her recent success in that industry is groundbreaking territory for people with disabilities!
Ellie signed with Zebedee Management, a talent agency that represents models with disabilities, after a friend suggested it back in 2017. Since then she’s booked regular shoots with some top designers, including a Nike ad that aired during last year’s Women’s World Cup. She recently posed for photographer David PD Hyde for Gucci’s Mascara L’Obscur ad campaign, which was then featured through a partnership with Italian “Vogue.”
This would be a coup for any up-and-coming model, but for Ellie it marks an important step forward for inclusion in her industry! “I really enjoyed the modeling and loved wearing the Gucci dress. I’m really proud of the photoshoot and would love to be famous. I’m looking forward to modeling for other brands,” she said.
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The public had an instant and positive reaction to seeing Ellie in a Gucci campaign. Her mother Yvonne Goldstein says their family couldn’t be prouder of Ellie and the strides she’s making for people with Down syndrome around the world.
“We’re all incredibly proud of Ellie and all the lovely comments she has had on Gucci’s Instagram,” said the proud mom. “She has always loved being in the limelight and in front of the camera, she’s very confident and good at taking direction.”
Zebedee spokesperson Laura Johnson says Ellie’s success in a major fashion campaign and the response of Gucci’s online audience shows that the old stigma that the “public don’t want to see” disabled models no longer applies.
“Inclusion of all people in the industry is so important, not only because it the right thing to do ethically, but also makes good business sense,” she said, adding, “Ellie is such a wonderful person inside and out. She lights up the room when she walks in and is such a professional. She is incredibly skilled and such natural beauty. This means the world to her, her family and the wider community. We really hope that all brands take note and including disabled models now becomes the norm.”
Congratulations, Ellie! It’s so wonderful to see more “regular” people blazing trails in an industry that was once so exclusive. Ellie is so gorgeous, we can’t wait to see where her talents lead her.
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