Can Flab Be Fabulous?

Posted on by Tiffany Spatz (Cobanerd)
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Last year, plus-sized actresses like Gabourey Sidibe and her castmate Mo'Nique received the highest accolades for their performances while their awards show ensembles were almost universally panned. The same was true for Jennifer Hudson, who was considerably curvier when she accepted her Oscar in 2007. Even the all-powerful Oprah has a hard time getting a positive fashion review when she's on the high end of one of her weight shifts.

Fashion has declared her sense of style un-'Precious'

It's no dirty secret that the world of high fashion likes their women low-fat. Even former supermodel Tyra Banks, who for years has pushed the idea that beauty comes in all sizes, surrendered the "plus-sized is beautiful" battle when her show America's Next Top Model crowned its thinnest winner yet last season. Hollywood seems to be following suit.

For the 17th year running, Vanity Fair's newest Hollywood issue projects a super svelte future for the film industry. Don't believe them? Despite winning an Oscar last year, Mo'Nique doesn't seem to have anything on her plate (work-wise, at least) except for her own self-titled BET show. Furthermore, when the 2011 Academy Awards air on February 27, the most sizable female nominees will be non-actresses like Emma Thomas and Darla K. Anderson, both of whom produced Best Picture entries (Inception and Toy Story 3, respectively).

Even when the red carpet critics concede that they're doing everything right, the big girls can't seem to rise above a mediocre fashion grade. Statistics tell us the average American woman has now expanded to a size 14, but the average actress has shrunk from a size 4 to a 2. While I, along with the rest of America apparently, would admittedly rather see a size 2 in the ever-popular body-hugging Herve Leger bandage dress, the diminishing presence of fat actresses raises an interesting question: have film and fashion become impervious to shifting social norms? To put it more bluntly, will fat actresses always be a fail on the red carpet?

Is there room for plus-sized women in fashion and film?

2674 views & 53 votes

Debate It! 14

It would certainly help me out.

Posted By jogden,

I think this is why I've never won an Oscar.

Posted By matt,

Matt, I never knew you were an overweight actress.

Posted By lockheed40,

I'm not really, but I like to take roles as an overweight actress. Since that isn't working Ill switch to portraying the severely developmentally disabled.

Posted By matt,

Film yes, fashion no

Posted By Karla,

I think once an effing gorgeous model like Crystal Wren can be called a model and not a plus sized model we will have seen some progress. I know big ladies who are beautiful and confident and have bank and don't want to shop somewhere with "barn" in the name.

Posted By Actionamy,

There are a few things a female must have, regardless of her weigh (and excepting woman who are morbidly obese or unhealthily skinny): hips and a great ass. Nope, not even big boobies. So I don't see what the fuss is all about with these "plus-size" models, or with the skinny models, so long as they all have hips and great asses. Unfortunately, that is not the case with a lot of the skinny models. Boo, fashion world. Boo.

Luckily, I've got my pretty wife to look at every day. Kiiiick ass.

Posted By Brash Equilibrium,

Fucking typos

Posted By Brash Equilibrium,

For fashion to be able to accept the "Plus-sized" models, society, first and foremost, has to accept "plus-sized" people. As a society, we do not see what is on the inside enough. We look at the outside too much. That is where the fashion boutiques take their cues. They find models that are considered "hot". Everybody is beautiful in their own way and society needs to acknowledge their beauty, whether internal or otherwise

Posted By Mr.Truther,

It's funny you said that, Mr. Truther. In actuality high fashion no longer looks for "hot" women; the days of the supermodels are over. As evidenced by this year's ANTM winner, fashion is moving more toward "freak of nature" when it comes to model selection. Isaac Mizrahi wrote an article several years ago about how fashion was alienating everday women, and how the designers had become so self-important about their clothes that they were designing for hangers instead of humans, hence the streamlined models. It's a sentiment that's been echoed a lot the last couple years, but as you pointed out the paying public seems as apathetic about changing the standard as they do about...well, pretty much everything else.

Posted By Cobanerd,

plus size women in fashion id have to say maby becouse there r women out there who think there not pretty becouse there over waight i think it would help to see a thick women in fashion plus maby thyll start making better clothing for big yes precious was an amazing movie why not others

Posted By selenacosta,

I'd choose someone with good muscles or something to grab onto any day (over someone who was bony and sharp and looked like she didn't like food).

Posted By LothLoren9,

I really think there IS, but as long as idiots don't make the clothing too tight, I hate to say it. Fashion is perfect for plus-sized women if they clothing is loosely fitting (or however they say it.)
I'm not plus sized but all people have a soul. well... MOST people.

Posted By midnalover99,

i like em big i like em chunky i like em round i like em funky lol madagascar 2

Posted By 27elffaw,

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