The Spring/Summer 2017 campaign also celebrates Bottega Veneta’s 50thanniversary. Creative director Tomas Maier told the Telegraph Hutton’s casting was a nod to the “essence” of the brand – an echo of his September 2016 statement. Hutton appeared on the runway alongside 21-year-old Gigi Hadid then, and he said Bottega Veneta creates clothing “for women, not 16 year olds.” That same show, which featured other models over the typical ages toward which the industry gravitates, was heralded as Hutton’s comeback and prompted Maier to draw inspiration for the new collection from some of her most classic looks. An early image of Hutton in the campaign, for example, shows her in an elegant, minimalist jersey polo and a red leather skirt that indeed seems to have something of the ’70s about it.
The fashion industry has been responding to the long-standing but increasingly louder criticism of its lack of diversity. A comprehensive analysis of fashion magazine covers in 2016 found that the women featured there represented some movement away from the traditional norm of thin, white, cis-gendered and able-bodied. But progress remains slow; women older than 50 comprised only 5% of covers analyzed, but even that low figure doesn’t really represent the absence of older women from the modeling industry, since the covers included actresses and other celebrities. If there’s a world even less forgiving of women who have the misfortune of no longer being 23 than Hollywood, it’s that of high fashion.
Hutton, who in September 2016 also appeared in an H&M commercial, is now arguably one of the most powerful examples of age diversity this season in fashion.