New York Fashion Week, which kicks off in September, is set to get the military salute this season. Fifteen military service women, both active-duty and veterans, will kick off the week during a fashion show titled Salute the Runway, with military women walking down the runway in little black dresses designed by the likes of DKNY, Calvin Klein, Carmen Marc Valvo, Norisol Ferrari, and Mara Hoffman.
Similar fashion shows have been taking place at military bases throughout the U.S. with the aim of raising awareness around the difficulties military women face when they transition back to civilian life.
“This campaign is a wonderful opportunity to support female veterans throughout the country,” Leslie Nicole Smith, a retired Army captain walking in the show told Women’s Wear Daily. “We are able to raise awareness of the issues surrounding women veteran reintegration, acknowledge their heroic service, and highlight the versatility of the little black dress and how this wardrobe staple can help women veterans’ transition from military service.”
“It’s an honor to contribute to this initiative in support of such strong, modern-day warrior women—individuals who have taken the path less chosen and devoted themselves to a life of bravery and selflessness,” designer Hoffman told WWD.