Monday, January 11, 2010

Curves Ahead: V Magazine Says Size Doesn't Matter

A debate is brewing about edgy fashion magazine V's "Size" issue. While the magazine doesn't hit newsstands until January 14, I got to see many of the photographs on the their Web site and Naturally, the photographs are full of gorgeous models, but this special issue highlights models of all shapes, sizes and ethnicity, proving that beauty is in the eye of the beholder and that designer fashion can and should fit all figures.

But people are buzzing about all the plus-sized models who are photographed in various forms of (un)dress. Many are asking if this is a publicity stunt to sell more magazines or could this be a sign of things to come from the fashion world.

The photography was mostly done by “no one wants to see curvy women” Karl Lagerfeld, Bruce Weber and Terry Richardson.

Plus-sized models are used in the February issue of V magazine in a spread called "Curves Ahead". I think they look captivating.

Real Women, Real Curves. I can relate to this image of Marquita Pring.

The photographs made getting dressed a whole lot easier for me. The models - pot bellies, power thighs and large breasted - look radiating. I know I'll always need my pants hemmed (I'm stand just barely 5'4") and I will never have long, lean legs or a small butt. Instead, I would like to celebrate my best features, which are my flat belly, strong backside and pretty eyes. It's nice to see real women for a change.

I just wish more magazines featured a variety of shapes and sizes like this issue does and I sure hope V continues to do so.

In one section of the magazine, shot by Richardson, plus-size model and author, Crystal Renn is featured in an editorial called "One Size Fits All". The full-sized and gorgeous Renn is pitted against "straight model" Jacquelyn Jablonski in similar poses and identical looks.

"I'd like to see everyone take on the attitude that there are women of all different shapes and sizes as 'the beauty ideal,' and that it's not one type or another," Renn told the Associated Press. "All women bring something different to the table and we havet o appreciate them all." You can buy Renn's book of "Hungry: A Young Model's Story of Appetite, Ambition and The Ultimate Embrace of Curves" here.

On the left, we have Jacquelyn Jablonski and on the right is Crystal Renn. Both women are gorgeous but Crystal really shines here. To see the rest of the photos from V click here.

And although many of the plus-sized models that appear in the magazine still look to be in way better shape than many Americans who struggle daily with weight issues, it is a step in the right direction. Fashion and photography has always been about the possibilities and these photos do a great job of showing women with real curves that they too can be beautiful and sexy.

While the fashion photographs has always being fantastical, I love seeing people I could relate to. For me, it’s obvious that a beautiful woman is a beautiful woman, no matter her shape. The women in these photographs look healthy - glowing skin, lustrous hair and of course beautiful features. Most of all, I’m just drawn to their images more so than the traditional model. They are more interesting and really they represent me and most woman I know.

Plus-sized model Tara Lynn is fierce looking wearing nothing. For a video of this shoot, click here.

This is a great piece that shows our younger sisters that you don’t have to starve yourself to be beautiful. Being a healthy, fit and strong woman to me is the most attractive and I would rather see more of that.

According to Full and Fabulous, a nonprofit organization helping plus-size women and teens cope with the peer pressures of being overweight, young girls are more afraid of becoming fat than they are of nuclear war, cancer or losing their parents. And 50% of the 9-year-old girls and 80% of 10-year-old girls have dieted. That's just way to young.

Why can’t their be normalcy in fashion? We should demand more real looking models.

Magazines need to sell their issues and they always sell better when their is controversy and clearly this is really causing quite a debate. Do you agree with Mr. Lagerfeld or are you happy that curvier women are represented in the magazine. Weigh in (pun intended) and let me know your thoughts on the images.


  1. It's about time media sold us images of the average person. Young girls yearn for the body of a skinny super model, often ending up with life threatening eating disorders. thank you V for opening our eyes.

  2. Yikes -- no one wants to see curvy women??? Well, then everybody will have to walk around w/ their eyes closed because there are plenty of curvy (and beautiful) women out there! I'm certainly sick of seeing anorexic models literally shaking and nearly falling in front of me on the catwalks. I think WendyB actually DID witness one woman crash and burn! Please feed the models!

  3. I admit that I do love the typically skinny model in my fashion as it is fantasy for me, but absolutely not the fashion week-starved bodies where you can see muscle waste and it hurts to look at them (I have to look away when bones are jutting out). Anja and Freja are two examples that come to mind from the last season, their knees were bigger than their thighs and I couldn't appreciate the clothes.

    As for the V spread, I think rather than seeing these pictures as a space where a thin girl should be, we should look at them as the beautiful portraits they are. And I don't know what's with Karl Lagerfeld but he sure is fickle! I think he has even said something to the effect that his opinions have a life span of a minute. But something tells me he couldn't have enjoyed this. I there's a lot of self-loathing from his days as a big man.

    Great post!

  4. I've always been a fan of fuller-figured models. There's a great site with many images of Crystal and other plus-size models here:

    They're all gorgeous.

    The site's forum also has thought-provoking discussions about body image and the media.

  5. Get latest digital magazines for iPad, iPhone and PC/MAC available on Other Edition newsstand.