Tim Gunn has said a lot of body positive things in the past, but his latest comments are super important. He recently expressed in an interview that if he were in charge, he’d do a whole season of Project Runway that exclusively featured plus size models.
This is an even better idea than it sounds on the surface. Such an angle would not just increase visibility and allow for some potentially awesome collaborations with famous plus size models and bloggers. It would really get to the root of the plus size fashion problem.
Women who wear plus sizes frequently express the sentiment that the clothing available to them is limited and often patently unstylish. Not to mention, it’s often also poorly made and just plain unflattering. And in past seasons of Project Runway, we’ve seen designers throw tantrums when presented with a plus size challenge (for the same reason award-winning actress Melissa McCarthy can’t get dressed by top designers).
There’s a lot of snobbery in fashion when it comes to size, and people who make clothes frequently complain that making clothes for bigger women is impossible—that they can never get proportions right. Right now, designers have little motivation to learn such skills. Though it baffles me how they don’t know that expanding their size range to the plus size market would likely increase revenue, designers can get by not making their clothes available to more customers.
But a plus size Project Runway would make it a competition. Designers would have no other options than to fit their clothes to larger frames, and would learn some essential design lessons about how to make more diverse ranges for their designs. And hopefully, there would be some amazing, stand-out garments that would show the world how chic and how beautiful clothing over a size 8 can be.