The fashion industry has come a long, long way since featuring only tall and skinny models with skin whiter than milk. We would say that we’re glad tokenism is finally an archaic concept, but we don’t want to talk too soon. What we will say is that inclusivity and representation are being emphasized by brands and fashion labels, and that couldn’t make us happier. The most recent example of this is Sahib Singh who is Burberry Children’s first Sikh model.
The Burberry Children’s Autumn-Winter ’22 collection warmed the hearts of millions of people when they took to Instagram to share a post featuring the adorable Sahib standing with a teddy bear. This made him the first model to wear a patka (the turban worn by younger Sikh boys) in the British Luxury Fashion label’s official imagery. The 4-year-old was part of an ad campaign that featured children from all ethnicities. In the post shared on social media, Sahib is seen donning the brand’s collection of back-to-school designs. He is posing in a Thomas Burberry Bear puffer jacket that is worn over a cardigan and shorts.
London-based Sahib is a digital content creator who enjoys an Instagram following of 8,400. His handle is managed by his parents, who are exceptionally proud of this incredible feat. In a recent interview with Vogue India, Sahib’s mother, Harjot Kaur, said, “Sahib had an incredible day with the Burberry team, who really looked after all the children they were shooting with. To see our son, who does look different from his peers, being given a chance by the iconic British brand was truly a milestone moment.” She further adds, “We want not just Sahib but all the boys in our community to be proud of their heritage, and wear their patkas and paghs with pride and confidence.”
As soon as this image hit Instagram, love and praise started pouring out from the entire South Indian community. This overwhelming response is not about one image or one adorable little boy. It’s about what this one campaign represents and the kind of precedence it sets. We can only hope that more fashion labels follow in Burberry’s footsteps!