It doesn’t matter whether you live in America or not, we’ve all been feeling the weight of the Presidential Election. In a time filled with uncertainly everywhere, the potential of another 4 years of Trump in power was too much for some. 

It mattered now more than ever to make your voice heard. Prompting many fashion labels and retailers such as Patagonia and Nordstrom to create public campaigns. Putting aside their usual restraints on being vocal on politics and responding to both employees and consumers with what they truly care about. Patagonia even voiced their opinions through shorts stating ‘vote the arseholes out’ encouraging young people to vote. 

Image via : Patagonia

Political engagement has always brought risks for brands, but all I can say is those shorts sold out…  It’s refreshing to see huge corporations finally realising  the shift in attitude is being pushed by social media, Political engagement can create a direct communication between brands and consumers and with Gen z taking over the consumer influence it’s never been more important.  

Image via : Diet Prada

Via : Diet Prada

You can see the shift through the Corporate consortium ‘Time to Vote’ by Patagonia who have created a business movement towards not having to choose between earning a paycheck and voting. 411 companies join forces in closing their stores, because shopping could wait, and democracy couldn’t. Ralph Lauren has declared Election Day a company-wide holiday, Sax Fifth Avenue became a place where voters could register, and Gap is directing employees to resources to educate themselves on candidates and issues. This was the time for brands to step up and make an impact. 

It’s well known that many of Biden’s votes came from young people and people of colour. In 2016, only 56% of those eligible to vote in the election did so (according to Pew research center). And so, the 4 years of Trump in office began. This time, you could tell people wanted a different outcome… 

After days of anxiety, uncertainty and ridiculous twitter wars, yesterday was a big day. Biden winning the election and Trump leaving the white house could not have meant more to so many people across the world. It’s time for change. 

Its uplifting to know what matters to people today. Inclusivity, human rights, healthcare, the environment. The fact that fashion brands began to take a seat at the political table shows how far we’ve come in the fashion industry in mirroring the things that matter most to our customers. Generation Z judge brands based on their political stance and their responsibility to stand with them on world issues. Whether that be during the Black Lives Matter Movement, the Environmental Crisis or the Presidential Election. 

The results today demonstrate the shift towards politics being accessible to everyone, not just those at the top. This time around, everyone, including fashion brands, put their priorities in the right place. Today’s election results have given people their voice back. 

Written by : Cailey Hartshorn @chartshorndesigns

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