It seems everywhere you turn these days there's some controversy over plus-size models. Yesterday Garance Doré made some comments that set people off, and now ABC is getting flak for refusing to air plus-size Lane Bryant lingerie ads on its network. Apparently the network said no to airing Lane Bryant lingerie ads during Dancing With the Stars because they were too racy. However, it ran Victoria's Secret lingerie commercials during American Idol. When ABC asked Lane Bryant models to show less skin, the brand turned down the request, stating that its ads are no more risque than Victoria's Secret ones. Talk about drama! What do you make of all of this?
Street style photographer Garance Doré has a thing or two to say about plus-size models. "It's not such a good thing to show plus-size because it's not really physically healthy and not always flattering to fashion," she said. V Magazine begs to differ. But before you get offended, she has more to say: "It should not be such a big deal to show women with different bodies, but sometimes it's treated like a bit of joke, or for shock." Exhibit A: the plus-size models on the Mark Fast Fall runway. She thinks it's naive of the fashion industry because, although it would be nice to say that the idea of different body shapes is normal, she believes it's not yet. Does Garance have a point or is she just being insensitive?
Of course, plus-size model is in itself a misnomer. America's top-earning plus-size model, Crystal Renn, is a size 12, one size smaller than the average American woman. If a so-called plus-size model can wear regular-size clothes then why not just integrate her into every magazine issue. Or if the jump from size 2 to 12 is too much, why not try size 6 or 8 models?
For all this whining, I don't oppose Vogue's rumored decision to not feature Gabby Sidibe. She's an actress and a personality who supersedes her weight. If Vogue's shtick is to showcase clothes, then by all means choose those who wear them best. It would be at the very least hypocritical of editor Anna Wintour after calling overweight people "little houses" last year.
Now put Gabby in Vogue's size issue, and I will take issue with that!