Four-year-old Ivy Kimble, who has Down syndrome, is being featured as a model in the American Girl holiday catalogue this season. Styling a festive, sparkly red dress that matches her doll, Ivy looks picture-perfect.
An American Girl spokeswoman told People magazine:
She’s adorable and great to work with, and the shots we captured with her for our holiday catalogues are beautiful. We look forward to continuing our work in celebrating all girls.
Ivy’s mother, Kristin Kimble, told WLS-TV that she is heartened by this victory for inclusion, which has special significance for Ivy:
It’s a big deal for her. There’s not a lot of print or media with a lot of kids with Down syndrome.
Kristin hopes that all industries will continue taking steps towards representation of all abilities in their media:
For us, we want to keep seeing kids of all abilities out there in print. I love that these companies are trying to make a conscious effort to continue to put them in print. My hope is that it continues to grow, but it stops being a conscious effort, and just becomes natural.
This opportunity with American Girl has sparked conversations about Down syndrome and representation, she adds:
My kids, people are asking them about Down syndrome now. “Oh, Ivy has Down syndrome and she’s in the American Girl catalog?” Yeah, everyone can be an American Girl and that’s the great thing about it.