We are still living in a time when the safe spaces, civil rights, and lives of members of the LGBT community are threatened—and that's just in countries where homosexuality isn't explicitly outlawed. It makes celebrations like pride parades even more important and necessary. It's a chance to be visible, free, and take a stand.
Trans model Valentijn de Hingh used her moment during the opening walk of the EuroPride parade in Amsterdam to make a statement. She wore a massive rainbow gown made of flags from 72 countries where homosexuality is still illegal. In 12 of those countries, this "crime" is punishable by death. The dress was a collaborative project with De Hingh, the COC Nederland (Dutch organization for LGBT women and men), fashion designer Mattijs van Bergen, and artist Oeri van Woezik.
Dutch photographer Pieter Henket captured the moment. "I then was asked to come on board to create a image. And where best to do that then in front of one of the most beautiful paintings in the world 'The Night Watch' by Rembrandt in Het Rijksmuseum," Henken said in an Instagram post.
De Hingh isn't just making LGBT history with her statement dress: the 26-year-old model is also the first transgender woman to be signed to IMG models and serve as an ambassador for EuroPride. "Every country that changes its legislation will have its flag replaced by a rainbow flag," she said in an Instagram post. "Let's hope this dress will represent a patchwork of rainbows sooner rather than later!"
Tahirah Hairston is a style writer from Detroit who likes Susan Miller, Rihanna's friend's Instagram accounts, ramen and ugly-but cute shoes.