What Is a Plus Size and Why Can’t the Fashion Industry Deal With It Properly?

This is an area under debate at the moment and some people are clearly struggling with it. They know that plus size is popular and is a hot topic for discussion and they wish to participate and comment on the plus size market. But what is “Plus Size”, what does it mean and how do we view it?

The words “Plus Size” are used to refer to clothing for larger people, there is a wide area of debate around what is considered to be large, where does it start? Size, 10, 12, 14 or 16?. The debate then also becomes associated with health issues as many people consider that larger people are automatically unhealthy (this is untrue). The Fashion Industry is totally focused on how people look and larger people do not figure on mainstream fashion’s radar. This is regrettable as a lot of people are larger than the models generally used by the fashion industry (they are then expected to buy clothes modeled on thinner women). It is interesting that the fashion industry is associated with thinness which itself can also give rise to health issues. It seems that people (both large and thin) slightly outside the “norm” are viewed and treated differently though interestingly in certain circumstances both are perceived as being “unhealthy”

However these perceptions are being challenged somewhat because people are getting larger and what used to be considered “plus size” is now much more common than previously. Dress sizes have become larger over the years but have remained labeled as previously known as “Vanity Sizing” to make customers feel good about themselves. Typically the fashion markets are driven by designers setting trends. Their work is an art form and is displayed in an artistic manner. Ready to wear on the high street takes it’s cues from these trends although you also get designers who set their own trends for their market.

Ready to Wear is worn by much wider age and size groupings than shown on the Couture Catwalks, and a lot of the trends seen on the catwalk do not necessarily transfer well to the normal market. So while the “Plus Size” market may not be “media” popular they represent a good portion of people who shop for clothes.

The term “Plus Size” is commonly used in the USA but is less common here in the UK, it is a commonly used search term on Google but it’s not really that well used here in the UK. Media doesn’t really know how to handle it and this was never more clear when we saw the Vogue Italia cover for June 2011. It features 3 beautiful women photographed in lingerie. These women are plus size models and while it is wonderful that Vogue featured them on their cover is a shame that they felt it necessary to photograph the women semi naked and with one of them posed somewhat inappropriately.

Editor in chief Franca Sozzani launched Vogue Curvy in February and the June 2011 Cover of Vogue Italia was aimed at helping promote Vogue’s new affinity with plus size women. It is excellent that Sozzani has a launched Vogue Curvy, is this mainstream fashion recognising that there are lots of women out there who are curvy or plus size and who demand that their fashion needs and desires be catered for? On an equally positive note Sozzani is also campaigning against web sites that actively promote anorexia which the fashion industry has been blamed for encouraging in the past. So well done to her for taking an active stance on this issue. In time perhaps the fashion media will focus on fashion as opposed to the size of the individual wearing it. After all everyone has the potential to be elegant and beautiful regardless of their size.

“The Cut” blog also posted an article “No One Seems To Know What A Plus Size Model Really Is” and they featured some quotes from Madeline Figueroa-Jones editor-in-chief of Plus Model magazine. Interestingly “The Cut” featured a photograph of one of the covers from Plus Model Magazine and of all the covers they could have chosen they chose a cover with models wearing lingerie and posing provocatively. Plus Model Magazine has plenty of covers showing larger women wearing beautiful clothes. So it was a shame that both of these well travelled web sites chose to somewhat cheapen plus size women by showing them in skimpy lingerie (however well photographed).

Both Vogue and The Cut could have chosen photographs showing plus size women wearing beautiful clothes and illustrating the fact that larger women can look just as fabulous as other women and that fashion should be about fashion and not body size. Designers could also look at the world slightly differently and if they were brave they could view curvy women as presenting them with an opportunity to design clothes that flatter curves and to allow them to make a different and new fashion statement. At Vida Moda we argue that curves are required to wear clothes really well! It is part of our mission to find beautiful clothes for larger women that will flatter and make them feel and look wonderful.

Vogue Italia Cover Image June 2011 courtesy of The NewsFeed and Vogue Italia

Designer Fashion Size 16 to 24 From Vida Moda Stylish European Plus Size Designer Clothing Collections For Ladies Browse Our Online Store For Clothes For Curvy Women.

The Advantages of Attending a Fashion Show

For some people a great time means having a party, then for others it is just being themselves and watching the latest movie or reading a book that they like. Even so, for others, there specific idea of having fun is going to a fashion show.

It is often found to be true that you might find yourself ending up being a fashion show addict after just one show. A fashion show is not just simply numerous hours of sitting and watching attractive woman walk down the catwalk in extreme outfits. It is a great deal more fun than that. You even have the opportunity to get a lot out of the show as well.

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Clearly, if you go to a fashion show, you will get to view the latest fashions. This can assist you, even if you’re not a fashion sellout. This can help you out by giving you an idea of what particular fashion is in at the moment. Even though you may not be particularly interested in what everyone is wearing, you might be inspired to update your wardrobe just a little bit more or find some idea for a fashion that is uniquely your own.

Additionally, a fashion show can provide good entertainment when you find that the latest fashion is, well, hideous. How much fun do you think it will be to have a good laugh with your family and friends about some model who appeared wearing a lion mask and a tail when you get back home?

Goodie Bags

Even though not all fashion shows provide them, some fashion shows give out goodie bags to their attendees. Who doesn’t like free stuff? Even though you may not like all the things that goodie bag has in it, you can re-gifted at some later point to someone who you know will like it. The bigger and better the name of the fashion show, the bigger and better the goodie bag they will hand out.

Meeting People

Fashion shows typically end up being excellent social gatherings. First off, you might be able to make some new friends. You might realize that your new best friend was sitting right next to you at a fashion show admiring the same male or female model (as the case may be) that you were. Even better than that, you might meet some important people.

I am not just speaking about the beautiful models, fashion designers, or guest appearances by celebrities. I am referring to important people who could quite possibly shape your career. For example, if you’ve been trying to break into journalism. There might just be a newspaper editor reporting at the show. Making a social connection with them could give you a jump start into a possible job.

Going to a fashion show might not be your idea of fun or your ‘cup of tea’ as the saying goes. Nevertheless, everyone should at least go to one. You might find a new trend you would like to try out, meet someone that is life-changing, or even realized your newfound love of fashion.

If you end up not enjoying the show, you can always head back home and vow to never go to one again. Regardless, you’ll have some type of funny story to share later in life and now you will not be able to say that you have never seen one before.

Magnificent Milan: An Ideal Destination for Fashion Student Tours

As one of Italy’s most beautiful and inspiring cities, a beacon of style for centuries, and a thriving modern fashion hub, Milan is an ideal destination for fashion or textiles related student tours. Spending time here will give your pupils the chance to explore some of the most exciting haute couture shopping districts in Europe, witness the world’s most cutting-edge design at one of the city’s many exhibitions and fashion shows, and discover how fashion and clothing have played an important role in culture throughout Italy’s history. It is worth timing a trip to coincide with a fashion convention or show, but regardless of the time of year here are some of the other treats your group could be in for on a trip to Milan.

Shopping in the Fashion Capital

Milan’s top-end shopping districts are works of art in themselves, and a definite highlight of fashion-related student tours. The Quadrilatero d’Oro, or Golden Rectangle, is lined with graceful mansions built from the 17th-19th centuries and is an architectural gem as well as home to some of Milan’s top couture outlets such as Versace and Armani. Also a must-visit is the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, a glass-vaulted double arcade located at the heart of the city, framing an octagonal central space topped with a stunning glass dome – a marvel of design and construction. Containing some of the city’s oldest shops and selling some of its most elegant fashions, this is certainly a place to inspire. Stores here include Prada, Gucci, and Louis Vuitton.

Fashion further afield

Venturing beyond the high-end stores of this design-rich city can be highly rewarding for those on student tours, as it allows pupils to see the diversity that’s on offer. A visit to the canal-lined Navigli district yields independent fashion boutiques, a vintage market where classic designs and unique materials can be hunted out, and plenty of character-filled caf├ęs where ideas and inspirations can be swapped and discussed.

Fashion through history

Students of fashion or textile design will be well-acquainted with the importance of their subjects in today’s culture. But as student tours can demonstrate, they have also been central to cultural and even political life through history – as many of Milan’s museums and galleries can attest to. Taking a trip through the networked museums of the Castello Sforzesco provides many interesting glimpses into arts, culture and history in Milan – including dress and textiles. For those interested in costume design, meanwhile, the city’s famed opera house, the Teatro alla Scala, has a fascinating museum attached to it. The Museo Teatrale alla Scala collects items relating to Italian operatic and theatrical history, including an array of sumptuous costumes from historic performances.