Sometime last year I met a lady that looked through my runway collections and the first question she asked was why I seemed to only design for slim people and why I didn’t cater for plus sized women. Even though I tried to explain to her that I cater for all sizes and she could go through my Facebook page she was already emotional and blamed international media for making plus size women insecure and how they create problems of weight issues amongst women.
I feel like locally women do not understand the main reasons why runway models should be slim and tall and I will attempt to answer that question. The definition of a model is a person with the role of promoting/displaying / advertising clothing. The first records of models were in the late 1800s but it was only until the 1960s that modeling grew into a big business and saw the establishment of modeling agencies and it saw the rise of fashion icons like Twiggy.
An international model should be a perfect size 10 and should be at least 1.74 meters tall. The main reason the height is an issue is because technically it would be easier for someone sitting at the back of the room to see the person strut in the clothes. It also makes life easier for the designer as it is easier to make a collection that fits a certain silhouette regardless of the country they decide to showcase in.
Models do differ though as some who are bikini models are on the curvier side (eish ladies the definition of a curvy woman is one who has a small waist in proportion to her hips and bum. A woman can be curvy whether she is slim or fat it’s just in the genetics, having a huge tummy and some flesh on your bum does not make you curvy). There are a lot of runway shows that cater for plus size models just like when Rutendo Denice closed the Mustafa Hasanali fashion show at both Zimbabwe and Zambia fashion week which was just epic.
But just because the model is slim and tall it does not mean that other women of other body shapes and sizes aren’t beautiful. Beauty should be something that mothers instill in their children from a young age after all the world would be boring if we all looked the same.
For a long time women have let society especially men define beauty for them and trust me the definition of beauty changes from region to region e.g. in Africa you have to be plus size, in the western world everyone is trying to lose weight, the Latinos think every woman should be curvy (yeah I mean Kim Kardashian type of curvy).We just cannot keep up.Beauty shouldn’t just be about your looks they are God given and we should learn to appreciate our uniqueness but we should also invest in beautiful hearts because that is what makes us amazing.
But for all of the women who are not blessed with the height and gift of a fast metabolism there are so many other careers in fashion you could take up. You could become a designer, stylist, makeup artist, merchandiser, blogger etc the list is endless. Whatever you decide one fashion accessory every woman can have whether she feels beautiful or not is a smile, lovelies its women’s month.