In 2008, Whitney Thompson made waves when she became the first-ever plus-size winner of “America’s Next Top Model.” These days, she’s parlayed her win into a successful modeling career — and a turn as an entrepreneur. This past month, Thompson launched TheBoldandTheBeautiful.com, a dating site geared specifically toward plus-size women and the men who love them. Keep reading »
This year, as in every year, there was an absence of plus-sized women at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week, which gave the organizers of Full-Figured Fashion two options: either lie down and take it, or fight back. They decided to fight back, and organized their own incredible Full-Figured Fashion Week, featuring a slew of fashion shows, runway competitions and sales tailored to the plus-size consumer. Vice’s report on the event, hosted quizically by waif-thin Charlet Duboc, chronicles the week’s events — and the rather unkind feelings non-plus-size women have toward toward their full-figured counterparts.
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“Making fun of the fat girl” is the oldest and most cliché gag in TV history. And when Tatyana Ali’s show “Love That Girl” made fun of a fat girl in a recent episode, they were downright cruel. Instead of using a stock image or say, not mocking a plus-sized woman’s body at all, the show used an image of a real, plus-size woman.
And she just happened to be my friend, the actress, comedian and gorgeous plus-size woman Erica Watson. Keep reading »
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contest in a landslide, but in a catty and rather unprofessional move, American Apparel wrote Upton an open letter that rescinded her win.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 »