While it’s hard to imagine a catwalk without the bold grace that comes with human models, we might observe drones dominating the catwalk as time progresses. In fact, we’re already seeing this happen!

That’s right; it’s starting.

Robots are taking over just as Terminator predicted in the early 1980s (although the movie never said anything about the catwalk).

Where & why it happened

There was a recent fashion show in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia that made use of drones, showcasing their clothing wafting through the air rather than adorning the bodies of human models. Has it really come to this? Are drones that much more technologically advanced than humans?

Not so much.

The reason given for the use of drones to show off the clothing rather than models was that using them made the month of Ramadan that much easier on them. Ramadan is a holiday that is of the Islam faith and over the course of the holiday, followers are expected to take time for spiritual reflection, work on their devotion and worship, and improve upon themselves. The time is a time of fasting that occurs periodically over the course of the month and each day, the fasting starts at dawn and ends when the sun goes down.

Well, at this point, the drones seem to act as floating hangers more than visually attractive models for the clothing. Technology isn’t far along enough to showcase the clothing in as appealing of a way as human models. It seems more that there is a certain level of wonder that comes with the use of drones to showcase clothing at a fashion show at this point in time, but this is a tremendous stride in the right direction for those who are in favor of incorporating new technology in the industry.

This is innovation at its finest, allowing technological advances to play a role in an industry that typically shows its love for the “shock factor” through innovative clothing as opposed to robotics.

While this is a technological breaking of the barrier of entry for drones in the world of fashion, everyone in the world does not agree with the decision to use drones.

Social media speaking out

Although this is something rather unique and relatively new for the world of fashion, some people have spoken out on social media against Saudi Arabia for using drones. They state that the drones are something out of a nightmare and suggest that using the drones as opposed to women models showcases the way Saudi Arabia views its women.

Historically speaking, Saudi Arabia is known for limiting women’s rights, giving ample reason for the suspicion of a lack of respect being given to the women of the country. The country has had restrictions on what women were allowed to wear in the past but over the years, these restrictions have changed.

Still, one of the limiting laws of the land is that women must cover themselves whenever they are out in public. This can be achieved simply by putting on an abaya. The hijab, a head covering, can also be a requirement of the women of this region and some of them even choose to use a niqab to conceal their face when in public.

Jeddah, being more modern and liberal than other cities found in Saudi Arabia, does not have these same expectations of the women residing there, providing some insight that this decision was not, in fact, made to oppress the female models of the country. The decision to use drones to model clothing at this fashion show was not made to negatively impact or limit the women of the area. Rather, it was a decision that was made to incorporate innovation while providing a bit of aid to everyone participating in the month of fasting for Ramadan.

Riyadh’s fashion week – a different story

When comparing this to Saudi Arabia’s first fashion week in its capital city, Riyadh, the fashion show in Jeddah was rather liberal. The event in Riyadh was much more conservative and the audience was totally composed of females. This event even had strict rules pertaining to what the models could show. Nothing was to be worn above the knee, transparency was severely limited, and cleavage was a big no-no.

With this being said, the kingdom has recently made headlines showcasing its decision to reform the gender-related problems, providing women with the same rights that they are entitled to in other regions around the world.

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