Runway Plus Down Under

With latex, PVC, and pretty much everything else about to explode across the World Of WearableArt stage, we might be in a more ‘global’ fashion mindset of late, and we certainly found news worth reporting far from the Dawnamtarix Design studio this week. It seems Australian Fashion week hosted its first-ever plus-size runway show.

Struggling to place her 60 fuller-figured models into shows, even in our surely evolved times, agent Chelsea Bonner of Bella Management “down under” organized a runway show dedicated exclusively to plus-size designers. Six local Australian fashion brands participated (Saint Somebody, 17 Sundays, Vagary, to name a few), as did, most importantly, nearly 30 of Bonner’s models. With 84 looks sent down the runway, from swimwear to gowns (even some “Adaptive” fashion pieces; couture designed for people with disabilities), the press-dubbed “The Curve Edit” was a hit and the show made news globally.

Although the “Big Four” fashion weeks in New York, London, Paris, and Milan have not, as of yet, devoted an entire show to plus-size fashion (or models), there have been great strides made over the past few years in model diversity, and not just with size. Diversity of ethnicity, age, and gender have all been challenged by plenty of fashion designers, magazines, and broadcasts, from all quarters.

Sure, there is more work to be done, but in the eyes of a latex designer, where we started from what was once considered a “fringe” (at best) couture creating, any alternative to staid sensibilities of a safe “norm,” is a step in the right direction. Inclusivity and empowerment, making sure everyone can find a voice and a choice to indulge their fantasies, needs, and wants in their style (as much as in everything else), is something we have always championed.

Chelsea Bonner’s show certainly featured a runway heading in the right direction.

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