Remember when American Apparel held a contest to publicize its new plus-size range of fashions, and provocative and outspoken American Apparel critic Nancy Upton won? Upton was offended by the language used to promote the contest, and in return, created a portfolio of photos mocking stereotypical notions about plus-sized women. Upton won the contest in a landslide, but in a catty and rather unprofessional move, American Apparel wrote Upton an open letter that rescinded her win.
After a slew of bad press (I mean, what were they thinking?), American Apparel relented, and flew Nancy out to their Los Angeles headquarters for a meeting to discuss how Nancy thought American Apparel could be better marketing to plus-sized women. And … everybody’s happy now?
Well, kind of.
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No matter that in the real world women come in a bevy of shapes and sizes, in the model world, you’re either “regular” or “plus-size.” And for the past several years, model Crystal Renn has been at the top of the plus-size game. But Renn has been catching flack lately for a rather surprising reason: some say she’s not plus-size enough. In yesterday’s Daily Mail, the model was criticized for appearing at a Metropolitan Opera opening in a slinky gold number, “now virtually unrecognisable from her days of ‘big’ modeling.” Nevermind that Renn is still not considered thin enough to model in the ultra-warped world of “regular” modeling, it seems Renn and her new, slimmer figure just can’t seem to win. Where critics of plus-size models say they provide unhealthy role models, others claim Renn’s sold out from her original plus-size form.
Earlier this year, Renn addressed her weight loss in an interview with Ford models. “A lot of people wanted to point their finger at somebody. They wanted to find a conspiracy when there actually was none,” she said. “I feel pressure probably more than any place from the public and the media. I think by placing a title on my head—which is plus-size—and then the picture that these people have created in their mind about what plus-size actually is, I basically fail you just with that, because I couldn’t possibly live up to that.”
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Earlier this week, we enjoyed a delightful “open letter” from Iris Alonzo, creative director of American Apparel, to Nancy Upton, the Dallas woman who won the company’s plus-size model contest by spoofing the nature of the contest. Iris Alonzo was not amused that the lovely Nancy Upton bested the competition with her hilarious pics in which she posed laying in a bathtub of ranch dressing and indulgently squeezing chocolate syrup in her mouth. Iris Alonzo was also not amused about the piece Nancy Upton wrote for The Daily Beast entitled “My Big Fat Photo Spoof,” which explained her actions: because American Apparel was “co-opting the mantra of plus-size empowerment and glazing it with its unmistakable brand of female objectification.” Why, the company was so hopping mad it told Nancy Upton they would be giving the prize to someone else. “While you were clearly the popular choice,” she wrote, “we have decided to award the prizes to other contestants that we feel truly exemplify the idea of beauty inside and out, and whom we will be proud to have representing our company.” Harsh.
We posted Iris Alonzo’s open letter (sent to us via email) on Wednesday and urged readers to write. I have no idea of knowing how many of you did write her, but one Frisky reader got in touch to say she heard back from American Apparel’s creative director. We’ve got their email exchange after the jump! Keep reading »
Last week, we became enamored with Nancy Upton, a Dallas woman in the #1 spot for American Apparel‘s plus-size model contest. The company asked bootylicious girls ages 18+ to send in photos of themselves, which they posted on their website so customers could vote on who deserved a modeling contract. Instead of a traditional modeling pic, the zaftig Nancy Upton submitted “fat girl” pics of herself bathing in ranch dressing, squirting chocolate syrup down the gullet, and posed with an apple in her mouth like a pig on a spit.
In short, it was amazing. No one could have been more thrilled than us when Nancy Upton won.
But it seems like not everyone was so happy about Nancy’s victory — namely, American Apparel corporate headquarters. We get a lot of douchey emails here at The Frisky, but this one takes the cake. After the jump, read American Apparel creative director Iris Alonzo’s nasty email (sent to us last night) about Nancy Upton, the kickass lady who won the company’s plus-size model contest fair and square. That is, until the company decided to award the prize to other contestants… Keep reading »
We’ve been only marginally interested in American Apparel’s plus-size model contest, which is open until Sept. 8 for bootylicious gals ages 18+. American Apparel is literally in the news every other week for some douchebaggy behavior, so I’m not keen to fawn all over them.
However, if this contest vaults our new best friend Nancy Upton to nationwide fame —or even just Internet-fame — it will have been worth it. Nancy had a friend take some … unusual … pictures of herself to submit to the American Apparel plus-size model contest and she’s currently leading the pack at #1! Take a gander at Nancy’s awesomeness after the jump: Keep reading »
Rarely is there a reality show whose “stars” don’t make me stabby. (Or who look like they’re going to stab me, in the case of “Mob Wives.”) But the chicks on TLC’s “Big Sexy” actually seem like people who would be my friends in real life: funky, funny, and down-to-earth. The show, which debuts Tuesday night at 10 p.m., follows five full-figured females trying to make it in New York City’s fashion biz. This ain’t the gilded-lily “The City,” y’all: in this preview, we see the ladies being asked to pay $30 to enter a club while skinny-minnies behind them in line are let in for free. (After cussing out the bouncers, they stalk off.) I hope the entire show isn’t just incidents like this where they are discriminated against for being plus-sized because that would be depressing. Still I’m willing to give it a chance to counteract all the brain damage sustained by every minute spent watching Olivia Palermo onscreen. [AOL TV, TLC] Keep reading »
Blogger Jay Miranda is a 26-year-old fashion lover from San Francisco. She started her incredible blog Fatshionable to show that good style translates, no matter what size you are. Her message? Wear what you love and don’t worry about the size. Miranda creates outfits that are adorable and on-trend, without costing a million bucks. We’re taken with her style and love her approach, and we hope you get a chance to check her out. After the jump, a few more pics of Jay in some of her favorite outfits. [Fatshionable]
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This weekend, I had a bookcase to assemble. So I turned on the television hoping to find something fun and mindless to watch while I tried to decipher Ikea assembly instructions. I am normally very anti-wedding shows—I don’t like how they play into the fairytale of weddings
and put all the focus on spending an extravagant amount on one day rather than on working hard to make a relationship work every day. But for some reason, I decided the thing to watch was a marathon of “Say Yes To The Dress: Big Bliss.” And I would now like to declare this my new favorite guilty pleasure show.
The series follows the wedding dress consultants of Kleinfeld’s boutique, which has one of the largest collections of plus-sized wedding dresses out there, as they help brides—sizes 16 through 30—find the perfect wedding dress. So why am I so obsessed with this show? Keep reading »
Vogue Italia‘s latest cover? So. Gorgeous. I hate to beat a dead horse, but why the hell are these models called “plus size“? Tara Lynn, Candice Huffine and Robyn Lawley just look like voluptuous bombshells to me.
[Daily Mail UK] Keep reading »