Runway (fashion)

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Models on the catwalk
Fashion model on the runway, Romantika Fashion, Sofia, Bulgaria

In fashion, a catwalk is a narrow, usually flat platform that runs into an auditorium, used by models to demonstrate clothing and accessories during a fashion show[1] In fashion jargon, "what's on the catwalk" or similar phrasing can refer to whatever is new and popular in fashion.

Runway terms[edit]


When a model scores an exclusive for a fashion label it means that they have been picked to walk for that particular designer only. This usually launches their career and elevates their status in the fashion industry, guaranteeing them spots on the world's best catwalks.[2]

Landing a Prada or Balenciaga catwalk exclusive is considered by some[who?] to be the "holy grail" of runway bookings, turning an unknown face into one to watch (e.g. Irina Kulikova, Sasha Pivovarova and Lindsey Wixson).[3]


Catwalk, a documentary covering life on the fashion runways, was filmed in 1993 by director Robert Leacock and premiered in 1996. The film followed models Christy Turlington, Naomi Campbell, Yasmin Le Bon, Kate Moss, and Carla Bruni as they jetted around London, Milan, Paris, and New York during Spring Fashion Week, including behind-the-scenes footage. The film was shot in black and white and color, and featured many top designers at work, like a young John Galliano, Justin Thomas, Karl Lagerfeld, and Gianni Versace four years before his death.


  1. ^ runway, 3.b, Merrian Webster Dictionary
  2. ^ Lim, James (20 February 2009). "Lyndsey Scott: First Black Model to Score Calvin Exclusive". New York Magazine. Retrieved 12 June 2011. 
  3. ^ Lim, James (26 September 2011). "Prada or Balenciaga: Who Carries More Weight in Modeling?". New York Magazine. Retrieved 6 October 2011. 

See also[edit]