Monday, November 20, 2006

Skinny Vs. Big

The Jean Paul Gaultier spring 2007 show featured, Ms. Velvet D'Amour, a plus-sized model clad in black satin and garters. Yes, it caused hype and buzz, especially with the recent ban on skinny models during Madrid's fashion week.

Why did he do it some ask? To make a statement, perhaps. But what statement is he trying to make? That is my question. I think that JPG's casting of a plus-size model in his show was simple mockery, (especially at Spain). I think that JPG’s line of thought could be summarized like this: They want to ban skinny models. If we ban skinny models then are we left using plus-size models? And if we are left using plus-size models then they would look like this and the runway will become this. Maybe or maybe not, but I think that adding one plus-size model to the mix is not going to change a thing.

According to a publicist, he was doing it to prove that beauty can be universal and thinks all women are beautiful. That sounds like a great and positive statement but if this was really, and I mean really the case, then why wouldn't there be plus-sized models in every show.

What we need to be seeing is everything between these two extreme body types. Why does it have to be one or the other? There is a huge disparity between the size 0– girl and the size 20+ girl, neither of which I think properly represent the general population of women and their bodies.

When will it be that we see short size 8 or 10 girls, slim girls with curvy assets,, or tall size 12 or 14 girls? I think that someone should at least try it. By now I am sure that we are all sick and tired of seeing the exact cookie-cutter body type on the runways, at least I am.

Season after season designers are always looking for ways to bring some newness to their shows. Why not cast a bevy of models (or non-models) with varying body types that truly represent what the average woman would look like in their clothes. (And maybe, just maybe, sales would increase as well – an additional perk/incentive that would, I think, be well received).

Photos: Chanel Spring 2007 (, Jean Paul Gaultier spring 2007 (

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