Sometimes I sit down to write a blog post and I’m like, “Hey, man. I’m a multifaceted person. There’s more to me than just being a fat person who wears clothes. I write music and I have a degree in Speech Difficulties. I have pretentious taste in music, film, and books and ill-informed but passionate opinions about politics. I am more than just a fat person!”
And then someone tells me I remind them of Rebel Wilson and I am like, “Oh, right. I am just a fat person. I’m just part of the fat monolith fatting upwards toward the fat sky.”
The annoying thing about that, besides the constant dehumanization, is that my fat opinion doesn’t count about the fat clothing I wear. It’s often designed without the opinion or expertise of the demographic it’s aimed at. On rare occasions it might be designed by someone who fetishizes fat women, oddly resulting in mumsy clothing ostensibly designed to highlight the bust and the face and nothing else.
That’s why I was so pleased when my friend Charlotte asked me to fit model for her MA collection. I had seen her BA collection on Tumblr and loved it– it was brave, sophisticated, retro in its inspiration but forward-facing in that I had never seen clothing for fat people designed that way. Even looking at it now I am wishing it was something that was put into production SO badly!
I traveled to Nottingham all summer while Charlotte worked on her collection, with my brave and loyal Gabby often accompanying me because I had ended a relationship with a dangerous, fucked up person whom I had been living with there. The three of us hanging out at Notts Trent having our Fat Camaraderie Time made me realize how bad it sucks to not have people in your life who can relate to the micro-aggressions you face and the assumptions people make about you. It’s not that I don’t love and appreciate and respect my friends who are thin or medium, because of course I do! But there are certain things you understand better if you go through them yourself, and feeling understood can be an important foundation for your relationships. It was a very nourishing experience.
It was also cool that Charlotte was fine with using a model who didn’t have anywhere near an hourglass figure. She had to do a lot of alterations from the mannequin and in the end everything fit me perfectly!
I knew the perfect person to turn Charlotte’s gorgeous MA collection into a gorgeous photo shoot, and of course that was the amazing Kitty Wood. Charlotte wanted a sort of vintage vacation feel to the shoot, and Kitty found us some great locations in Grimsby. Our first stop was a little railway station for children. The men who worked there were so funny and accommodating and let me pose against the steam engine before they put it away for the day.
I did my own hair and makeup and I never claim to be an expert so calm down okay
Can you believe that yellow coat? It moves beautifully. It’s such an incredible standout piece. I love the color, the pleats in the back, and it makes everything look fancy.
I never thought modeling was hard until I had to pose in heels. Then it’s IMPOSSIBLE.
So ready for my holiday in Grimsby, Lincolnshire. I’d been waiting all year! That dress fits like a dream and that print with the yellow coat is so New Look. The Dior kind, not the high street kind.
Our next stop was the beach! I had to pee so badly the entire time. Can you tell??
I felt like a Ghibli heroine!
I provided the hat. The top is an adorable striped top that flairs a bit at the waist and has a amazing shoulder feature that makes it pretty architectural. I think everyone needs a pleated knee length skirt like that one, as well!
Our last stop was the pier for the nighttime look. I look EXPENSIVE. I, a human being, can’t stop calling myself “expensive”.
My heels kept getting caught in the wood and I almost fell over. That would’ve been a good photo.
It was actually warmer in the ocean! I would’ve loved to go for a swim.
We put this all together only a few days before I left England so it was certainly a memorable way of saying goodbye to two of my favorite people. Charlotte got her MA and I’m so proud of her! You can definitely look forward to seeing big things from her in the future.
Another team that has fat designers and fat models is the Chubby Cartwheels team and I want all of their Autumn/Winter line.
This Suede Babydoll Dress is so good and the model is hot and it was clearly an endeavor put together by people who don’t believe in “hiding problem areas” or “camouflage” but actually like and respect the people they design for!