Designer Sent Models Down the Runway Carrying Guns at Belarus Fashion Week

A model is seen holding a gun during designer Tatiana Efremova's show on November 5, 2016. (SERGEI GAPON/AFP/Getty Images)
A model holds a gun during designer Tatiana Efremova’s show on Nov. 5, 2016. (Sergei Gapon/AFP/Getty Images)

The annual Belarus Fashion Week was recently held in the capital, Minsk, to promote designers and fashion in the Eastern European country.

This year brought out an impressive lineup, including one touching show, organized by Kids’ Fashion Days BFW and designer Tatiana Efremova, that gave young children with disabilities the opportunity to walk down the runway to raise money for charity. But Efremova produced another show that stood out for a very different reason.

The Belarusian designer of the popular brand Harydavets & Efremova put on quite a controversial display when she sent models adorned with weapons in place of accessories down the runway for her Spring-Summer 2017 presentation.

The designer channeled a military aesthetic, with many models walking the runway in black boots, goggles, and helmets along with the guns they were holding. Some models even wore gas masks, while others posed as if they were pledging allegiance.

One model wearing a gas mask backstage posted an Instagram with Efremova and explained her take on the show in the caption.

The caption loosely translates to, “Tatiana Efremova decided to wear a mask and goggles, helmet, to give arms and wear luxurious bows, which played a huge role in the show’s atmosphere. In her show, we were like, defenders of it, its territory, its time. A very interesting statement, assemble a team, and ideally show the waste. Very grateful to once again be a part of her work. Thank you very much and look forward to the next @efremovatn.”

Another unique aspect of the show: The models’ signature catwalk strut was replaced with what appeared to be a militaristic march.

Fashion week in Belarus maintains a relatively low profile compared to others around the world, such as New York Fashion Week and Paris Fashion Week. There’s no question that the show would have garnered major attention if the event had been better publicized, since casually replacing handbags with weapons is highly controversial.

Yahoo Style has reached out to Efremova for comment and will update if we hear back.

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