Saturday, January 31, 2009

Designing For Plus Sized Women - SWAK Designs

I found this article this monring on

Womens Interest 30.01.2009
Author : Stacy Montgomery

Although the fashion world has been built around the idea of "the thinner the better" for the last few decades, there has definitely been a huge revolution, over the last few years especially, to include the other half of the population - the 50% of us who fall into the size 16 and over, full-figured world. (Actually, that figure is closer to 67%...close to 2/3's of the population fall within a size 14 or larger.)

There have been many contributions to this revolution, of course, not the smallest of which is the change in the fashion industry itself. Two summers ago, runway officials in Spain literally refused to allow models under a certain BMI (Body Mass Index) to strut their stuff on the catwalk during Fashion Week. What the fashion world finally realizes, and wholeheartedly embraces, is that there must be a standard in their industry that no longer promotes eating disorders and self-destructive behavior around food. Like superstars in movies and in sports, they realize that their "top models" are indeed role models to young people. The side effect of this has been a new level of acceptance around full figured women.

This is great news to the world at large, and especially to the plus size women in the United States (where we are literally HALF of the population). Not only has the conversation definitely changed to healthy, instead of skinny; but the newest message is really one of self-acceptance and confidence, no matter what size we may be.

The first signs that plus size fashion was becoming more accepted in the main stream, and perhaps even admired in its own right, became obvious when well known high-end designers, such as Liz Claiborne, began special divisions catering specifically to larger women (in Claiborne's case, the line is called "Elizabeth"). We also can't overlook the ever growing popularity of full figured couture designers, such as Richard Metzger, who dresses such well known plus size stars as Oprah Winfrey, Star Jones and Camryn Manheim.
(I don't believe that Richard is designing for plus sizes anymore....)

The plus size fashion revolution gained a much stronger foothold this past September, again at Fashion Week in Milan, when popular designer Elena Miro kicked off the entire show with a line of full figured couture. Miro has joined the ranks of those creating everything from plus size dresses to plus size jeans and has embraced the indisputable reality that beautiful women come in all shapes and sizes. And we have the money to spend in order to look great! Darius Cordell Couture even designs plus size bridal gowns and evening wear for the full size bridal party or mother of the bride (or groom, of course). (Never heard of this guy...gonna google him in a sec....more to come..okay so I googled him and there's way too much drama going on with him and his clients for me to devote a blog to him just now....)

The best advice that comes from this group of designers for plus-size women?

Accent your best features and stop trying to cover yourself from head to toe. Got great legs? Definitely go for shorter skirts and dresses and skip the Bermuda shorts! Love your sexy arms? Show them off in plus size camisoles and spaghetti strap sundresses. Whatever your assets, definitely dress them up and strut your stuff! Whether it’s the catwalk or the sidewalk, looking great is simply always in style.

Stacy Montgomery, Sales VP for Sealed with a Kiss Designs (SWAK Designs,
Plus Size clothing) has built her career around her passion, embracing her own unique beauty and plus-sized body. Sealed with a Kiss Designs is a leading manufacturer of affordable and trendy plus size fashions.

Sigh...I will be honest here fam...I checked out the SWAK Designs site to get a look at the clothing....I think it's a UK based site (and the plus girls there get down differently than we do here in the states) It's (the clothing) not for me ...(totally NOT the way that I like to dress) but I am sure that many folks will find the clothing appealing. In the end it simply comes down to a matter of preference.

"Support your local curvy girl!!!"

"Though we travel the world over to find the beautiful, we must carry it with us or we find it not."

~Ralph Waldo Emerson

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