Banana Republic is embracing inclusivity with its new collection of baby clothing, as it features a child with Down syndrome in its advertising.
The baby clothing line was announced in February. It is a 40-piece collection featuring sleepwear, bodysuits, and knit tops “taking their cues from iconic adult pieces, featuring elements such as oversized pockets and buttons, as well as a bodysuit inspired by a women’s best-selling tank.”
A baby boy with Down syndrome appears in some of the advertising for the new collection. In a statement, a spokesperson told WTVT, “The BR Baby collection recently launched by Banana Republic was designed with a promise to be more sustainable, more welcoming, and more inclusive. This simple idea – that we all deserve to belong, and on our own terms – is core to who we are as a company and how we make decisions. We want to celebrate diversity in all forms and in the casting for BR Baby we saw a perfect moment to move this forward. We were thrilled to give this beautiful, loving human his first modeling job.”
Down syndrome is a birth deficit in which a person is born with an extra chromosome. While typical babies have 26 chromosomes, a child with Down syndrome has an extra copy of chromosome 21, which changes how the brain and body develops, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
A nonprofit group, Changing the Face of Beauty, which works to promote the representation of people with disabilities in advertising and media, recognized Banana Republic’s new model in a Facebook post.
“We are thrilled to see brands speaking to the disability community through their ad images,” Katie Driscoll, the founder of Changing the Face of Beauty, told WTVT. “So often our community is overlooked when diversity is being considered, fact is the disability community is the largest minority in the world and 1 in 5 families know or love someone with a disability. Being seen in the world we live in is vital to our future.”