Addressing Europe’s Migration Debate Through Fashion

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My name is Paula Immich. I am a fashion designer and stylist from Berlin, Germany running a small fashion label under my name.

Recently I shot pictures of Mathujana Pamini, a true Berliner with Tamil roots whom I met when I was doing the shopping for a styling job in Berlin. I found that she stood out from the crowd with her look and I asked her if she would model my recent collection.
Her appearance inspired me to take a mental journey to South Asia.  In my imagination I embarked on a trip of fabrics, colors and patterns and the country of my imagination.
As Mathujana has finished high school just this summer her mother came along to the shooting, overseeing the lengths of the hemlines and depths of necklines while sharing mouth watering Indian food recipes.
And although this wasn’t my intention from the start, I am realizing that showing different types of women and beauty can be a way of making a statement concerning the migration debate we are having here in Europe at the moment. Fashion diversity is still an issue: society’s perception of “beautiful” is pretty  narrow and it seems absurd that light hair and fair skin is the aesthetic ideal that rules in so many parts of the world.
It’s time to celebrate the beauty of the individual not ‘a type’.

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