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Kelly Knox

Born: 1984

Occupation: Model

Challenges overcome: Physical Disability

Successes, Achievements & Awards:

Kelly Knox was born in Enfield in North London in 1984. Kelly Knox took part in the 2008 BBC Three series Britain’s Missing Top Model, a competition looking for a British disabled model. Kelly won the competition and was part of a photo shoot with world renowned photographer Rankin and also appeared on the cover of Marie Claire magazine. Since winning the competition, Kelly has appeared on TV a number of times and continues to model around the world. She is currently represented by Ben Barry modelling agency. Kelly has recently modelled for Samsung, V05, Debenhams, as well as appearing in Vogue UK and was also the face for Oslo’s ‘Think New’ campaign. Kelly is a spokesperson for a number of charities and is an ambassador for Reach, a charity for children with upper limb deficiencies. Kelly Knox is a dedicated and passionate advocate for Diversity in Fashion with the aim to dismiss society’s preconceptions about disability and to challenge the beauty ideal. She says:“I would like to see disability normalised in fashion.” Over the course of her career she has worked hard to pave the way for others and, to break out of the constraints traditionally created by the label disability and offer inspiration to those who need to develop confidence in the face of negative attitudes towards disability. Kelly has been part of The Think New Campaign for Oslo City (launched earlier in 2012), which has presented a real standout moment in her personal and professional life. Industry and viewer feedback has seen the campaign gain much acclaim around the globe as on the most diverse fashion campaigns to be launched in recent memory. While also gracing the covers of various publications, Kelly has had her great share of success on the Catwalk as well. Kelly has been fortunate to spread her message of diversity and drive internationally across various cultures and social movements; from opening Pakistani Fashion Week and appearing as a ‘human mannequin’ for the UK’s favourite corset store The Fairy Godmother, to working with photographer Tony Briggs (when modelling for a V05 campaign). Kelly’s hard work has not gone unnoticed by other inspirational and influential industry-types, in the past she was selected to be a part of photographer, George Bamford’s Young Guns, Portrait Project featuring the “Top 100 up-and-coming Artists and Entertainers in the UK”, and that is a great honour in itself. Kelly’s work with Action For Children meant she was approached to illustrate her personal and professional transformations and to raise awareness of the difficult journeys taken by neglected children and young people, and Reach (the Association for Children with Upper Limp Differences) as a speaker at their AGM (where she received a standing ovation for her heartfelt words). Other great highlights in this line of work include hosting an inclusive fashion show for service users at the Park Avenue Disability Resource Centre (local to her home in Enfield) in 2010, speaking at London Book Fair (in the same year) as part of their Equal Measures Event, and launching a charity shoe auction for the Mines Advisory Group, which saw no less than 50 celebs donate their shoes in aid of landmine victims back in 2008. Kelly works with those individuals and organisations that share her great vision for a diverse future and her unshakable drive towards change. Most notably, perhaps has been her work for Debenhams where she is one of the faces for an innovative new campaign, the latter of which saw her being featured on VOGUE.COM and lead to Kelly being interviewed at Nick Knight’s Show Studio. In August 2013, Kelly had her first acting role starring as a lead actress in the hidden camera comedy show ‘I’m Spazticus’ for Channel 4. Kelly wrote a piece named ‘Letters to my body’ for the January 2014 issue of Glamour Magazine. As part of the London College of Fashion’s Better Lives Seminar on 10 March 2014, Kelly spoke at the college about “Ableism in Fashion”. In the Autumn of 2014, Kelly was listed in the Power 100 – Britain’s Most Influential People with a Disability. Knox shot for exclusive Parisian Fashion brand Yperlab in October 2014. On 16 December, Virgos Lounge launched their “Star Campaign” which featured women that exude Virgos Lounge star quality – Kelly was the first woman to feature.

Challenges Overcome

Kelly was born missing her left hand and lower arm. She was fitted with a prosthetic arm but refused to wear them from the age of 7. Kelly does not see herself as disabled because she is just as able to do things as other people and hasn’t let her disability hold her back.

Disability Definitions

Physical Disability A physical disability is a limitation on a person’s physical functioning, mobility, dexterity or stamina. Other physical disabilities include impairments which limit other facets of daily living, such as respiratory disorders, blindness, epilepsy and sleep disorders. Physical disability. (2015, May 9). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 10:59, May 20, 2015, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Physical_disability&oldid=661496548 http://www.reach.org.uk/ https;/www.actionforchildren.org.uk/

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Information sources:

Please click on the information links below to find out more.

Kelly Knox. (2014, December 30). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 13:41, April 2, 2015, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Kelly_Knox&oldid=640175100 http://kellyknox.com/about/ www.kellyknox.com http://www.twitter.com/itskellyknox http://www.facebook.com/itskellyknox http://www.reach.org.uk/

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