Fashion world seeks change for 'skinny' image.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Anna Wintour and Michael Kors spoke on a panel last night, about the troubling weight issues in the fashion industry at the Harvard Business School in Boston.

At the 13th Annual Public Forum, “Health Matters: Weight and Wellness in the World of Fashion, the two spoke as well as Russian supermodel Natalia Vodianov. With between 500 to 1,000 people showing up to hear them speak, the event raised over 150,000$ for Harris Center, an eating-disorder clinic at Massachusetts General Hospital.

The panel discussed efforts to prevent future eating disorder issues as well as the struggles that are occurring in the industry now.

“We want healthy-looking girls, the readers want healthy-looking girls.” Wintour said. “Except it is not always easy to dress them.”

Some of the sizes literally don't fit the models. In order to get work, they are forced to lose weight. With the panel agreeing that most sample sizes are between a 0 or 00 many worry about models well-being.

The three agreed that the Council of Fashion Designers of America’s initiative, which started back in January of 07', has brought a lot of improvement to the fashion industry. The CFDA initiative is encouraging designers to have a minimum age requirement, along with health standards like, banning alcohol and tobacco behind the scenes @ shows. They are also pushing for an alert system between designers and agents to get models treated when the first signs of anorexia or bulimia appear.

Mr. Kors pledged, "I will not use any models under the age of 16 in the future."

Vodianova was able to bring a personal note to the table. Having suffered from an eating disorder in the past, she was able to break away from it when she had children. She believes that many models suffer from eating disorders because they are so young.

"Their sense of self-worth is handed over to a bunch of people who don’t care about their self-esteem."

With the hope that the fashion world takes notice of the serious issues involving models health issues, Wintour and others are taking active steps in promoting a more well rounded/ positive image for women who aren't a size 0.

"It’s not only a hope, everyone at Vogue has made it their intention to praise different body types," Wintour said.

The recent launch of Vogue Curvy is a great example of things changing in the cut throat industry of fashion.

Vogue's April issue will feature the 9th annual "Shape" issue, with an interview from Kate Dillon, a plus-sized model who suffered from an eating disorder in the past.


Anonymous said...

From undersized to overweight... Where's the healthy middle?

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