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HSG
22nd March 2011, 13:17
<br>It may well have been the <i>least</i> publicized breakthrough in the history of full-figured fashion.

But what a breakthrough.

Believe it or not, the most recent incarnation of New York Fashion Week, which took place just over a month ago, actually included--for the first time ever--a bona fide <i>plus-size runway show.</i>

We say "first time ever" because although the OneStopPlus.com <a href="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/board/showthread.php?t=1967" target="_blank">show</a> from the fall edition of NYFW did take place simultaneously with the happenings of fashion week, and within the same general locale, it was not officially a part of what is knows as "Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week," the designated New York fashion extravaganza.

This one was.

Staged at the Fashion Gallery in Chelsea on the morning of February 13th, 2011--with a 6 A.M. call time (!) for a show that began at 11:00 A.M.--the event in question was formally titled <i>Designers' Premier.</i> Six individual designers presented their collections in the show, one of whom was <a href="http://www.facebook.com/natarsha.shearin" target="_blank">Natarsha Shearin</a>, under the label <a href="http://www.t-tyme.com/" target="_blank">T~TymeLady Couture</a>.

Not only was this show an official part of NYFW, but unlike the One Stop Plus production, which regrettably inclined towards using faux-plus girls, Natarsha Shearin actually booked true plus-size models to walk her catwalk, including two Judgment of Paris favourites from Model Service Agency: <strong>Lindsey Garbelman</strong> and <strong>Andrea Horblitt</strong>.

Amazingly, for a show that was an official part of New York Fashion Week, obtaining images of this event has proven to be well-nigh impossible. We know of only a handful of Web logs that have mentioned <i>Designers' Premier</i> at all, and most of these have posted only a few tiny, grainy photos (with none of Lindsey or Andrea).

The lone exception is a Web log called <i><a href="http://www.sassncurlz.com" target="_blank">Sass 'n Curlz</a>,</i> edited by the gracious and professional Wendy Poindexter.

After we read Miss Poindexter's illustrated <a href="http://sassncurlz.com/2011/02/17/nyfw-show-review-farai-sammy-b-swiyyah-akhtab-and-more/" target="_blank">post</a> about the event, we assiduously petitioned her for any further images that she had in her possession, and she graciously provided us with five photographs featuring Lindsey and Andrea.

Here they are, exclusive to the Judgment of Paris: pictures of the first-ever plus-size runway show that was an official part of New York Fashion Week.

As the top model in the show, Lindsey naturally walked at the head of the pack in the final "clapping" line up. She looks incredibly luscious in this image, with full facial features and rounded arms bared by her sleeveless dress. The light falls directly upon her, illuminating her and helping her to stand out from every other individual in the frame, model or audience member.<p><center><a href="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/andrea/ttyme01.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/andrea/ttyme01a.jpg" border="0" title="Click to enlarge" alt="Click to enlarge"></a></center><p>The sleeveless design and the traces of black lace that are incorporated into Lindsey's dress heighten its femininity. We have never seen Lindsey's arms look so shapely, or her face as full and attractive.<p><center><a href="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/andrea/ttyme02.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/andrea/ttyme02a.jpg" border="0" title="Click to enlarge" alt="Click to enlarge"></a></center><p>A few moments later, Andrea appears amid the line up, looking every bit as beautiful as Miss Garbelman. Dressed in a Judgment of Paris shade of purple, she resembles an earthbound angel, her blonde tresses and fair features seemingly illuminated by a divine radiance--as if a gaffer had been specifically instructed to light our favourite models at this show above all of the other girls. With this heavenly effulgence, Andrea glows like a latter-day incarnation of Aphrodite.<p><center><a href="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/andrea/ttyme03.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/andrea/ttyme03a.jpg" border="0" title="Click to enlarge" alt="Click to enlarge"></a></center><p>Besides the photos of the models in the concluding parade, we also secured two pictures of our goddesses walking in the show itself. First, here is Lindsey in one of the most sensual images we have ever seen. The emerald bow at the back of the dress is an adorable touch, but what makes this look so alluring is the sight of the soft, plump curves along the model's back. Nothing in the world is as seductive as the round, visible curves that genuinely full-figured models display along their upper back, and the fact that this dress fit closely enough to define these luscious features on Lindsey makes it a truly gorgeous item.<p><center><a href="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/andrea/ttyme04.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/andrea/ttyme04a.jpg" border="0" title="Click to enlarge" alt="Click to enlarge"></a></center><p>And here, although the image is a tad blurred (due to the understandable difficulties in capturing movement), is Andrea, looking gorgeous in purple. The blouse is supremely elegant, as is her abbreviated skirt--a fine daywear ensemble for a professional setting, yet one that still exhibits femininity. The model's volutpuous curves give the blouse shape. Like Lindsey, she looks absolutely professional on the runway, walking more steadily and gracefully than any minus-size catwalk cadaver ever could. Her golden hair plays off against the violet colour of the blouse as effectively as Lindsey's dark tresses and fair skin contrast with her white dress. Both models were ideally chosen for their respective outfits.<p><center><a href="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/andrea/ttyme05.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/andrea/ttyme05a.jpg" border="0" title="Click to enlarge" alt="Click to enlarge"></a></center><p>Finally, as a special extra item, here is a group shot showing all of the models who participated in this historic event. Lindsey's smiling face appears in the centre of the frame, while Andrea, in her own inimitable way, completely steals the show, with her curvaceous pose and bewitching, mischievous smile.<p><center><a href="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/andrea/ttyme06.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/andrea/ttyme06a.jpg" border="0" title="Click to enlarge" alt="Click to enlarge"></a></center><p>Take note of the models' hair arrangement: the distinctive Gibson Girl hairstyle, the most voluminous of all updos. As an innovation of the early part of the 20th century, the Gibson was the last truly feminine hairstyle to emerge while the millennia-old aristocratic beauty tradition still held sway in Western culture. The topic of the Gibson hairstyle came up in a <a href="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/board/showthread.php?t=1739#post4824" target="_blank">post</a> last year about one of Christina Schmidt's appearances on the television show <i>How To Look Good Naked Canada</I>. In the post in question, Emily rhapsodized about how wonderful it would be to see plus-size models adopting full-fledged Gibson hairstyles, their opulence of which is perfectly suited to plus-size beauty. The stunning attractiveness of both Lindsey and Andrea in these hairstyles proves Emily's speculation to have been correct.<p><center><img src="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/gallery/gibson.jpg"></center><p>Perhaps the most interesting aspect of the show, though, was its designation. As Sass 'n' Curlz reported, the official name of Natarsha Shearin's line was . . . "<strong>Timeless Beauty</strong>."

No moniker could have been more fitting, given that the participating models embodied the ideal of feminine attractiveness that reigned throughout Western history, and that the show featured not just one, but two Judgment of Paris favourites--two bona fide, living goddesses.

Bravo to Natarsha Shearin for being the first designer ever to stage a plus-size runway show as an official part of New York Fashion Week, for selecting timeless beauty as her theme, and for populating her runway with genuinely full-figured models, including two of the most gorgeous women in the world.

(Click images to view larger.)

- <a href="http://sassncurlz.com/2011/02/17/nyfw-show-review-farai-sammy-b-swiyyah-akhtab-and-more/" target="_blank">Our gracious photo provider, Sass 'n Curlz</a>

Emily
23rd March 2011, 06:25
Andrea and Lindsey looked stunning! What an exciting development -- an honest-to-goodness plus-size line officially showing at one of the world's top fashion weeks. And not just one or two token full-figured models amid a group of waifs, nor just a collection of faux-plus girls, but authentically and visibly full-figured models. Lindsey's dress was the standout, especially from the back. So lovely, with the adorable green bow.

It's true that pictures of the event seem to be well-nigh impossible to find. I did, however, stumble upon an interesting write-up by the hairstylist who worked on the show.

http://carolthecolorist.blogspot.com/2011/02/new-york-fashion-week.html

She describes how she achieved the Gibson look:

We divided the 40 stylists into teams, and we were each assigned to one designer for the morning. I worked on the Natarsha Shearin team, and the look was the classic "Gibson Girl" loose bun. We used control force and 1 1/2 inch irons to set the hair first, then we backcombed the hair except the hairline. The hair was then gathered to the crown, leaving it loose and billowy on the hairline still. The hair at the crown was secured into a small bun.Complex, but the end result was well worth it.

The fact that the first-ever plus-size runway show at NYFW had a timeless theme and featured luscious models wearing a beautiful Old World hair arrangement was the icing on the cake. What a marvellous event.

ZoŽ Josephine
23rd March 2011, 20:43
This collection is really lovely, as are all of the models. Its a shame it did not get more publicity. And I wish we had more pictures, or a video.

I love the clothes because they take recognizable elements of Victorian dress and update them so that it is wearable by the contemporary woman.

The hair is fabulous. I have always loved Gibson-girl hair.

Hannah
19th April 2011, 00:40
Although professional images of this historic show are still hard to find, the T~TymeLady Couture Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150535278860391&set=a.10150535276920391.640367.207715880390&type=1&theater#!/pages/TTymeLady-Couture/207715880390) now features a number of snapshots of the show that fans of both Lindsey and Andrea will definitely enjoy seeing.

Here's a photo of Lindsey looking very curvaceous walking the runway:

http://a5.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/215756_10150535282290391_207715880390_17732220_3432437_n.jpg

Andrea looks so pretty in this colour, and I love the vulnerable look in her eyes. I wish she did more runway work. She's gorgeous.

http://a2.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/206224_10150535282445391_207715880390_17732226_6595618_n.jpg

Lindsey appears opulent and luscious in this behind-the-scenes photo:

http://a8.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/206799_10150535279225391_207715880390_17732142_5801396_n.jpg

Andrea with a sweet, girlish smile:

http://a3.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/206741_10150535281890391_207715880390_17732202_5230644_n.jpg

And finally, another group shot of the entire runway cast:

http://a2.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/216220_10150535279985391_207715880390_17732160_7302149_n.jpg

I wish I could have attended this unprecedented show. Think of it: a plus-size designer at New York Fashion Week - and one who used genuinely full-figured models, not faux-plus girls. Bravo!

Pamela
19th April 2011, 01:54
T~TymeLady Couture has also posted a video of the show! It's only a cellphone video, unfortunately, so there's a little distortion in the picture, but still, how wonderful to view actual footage of the catwalk. Lindsey walks first, of course, and the camera catches a fine glimpse of her opulent figure. But it misses Andrea's walk, unfortunately! However, both Lindsey and Andrea appear again at the end of the video, in the final clapping reprise.

<object width="680" height="508"><param name="allowfullscreen" value="true"><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always"><param name="movie" value="http://www.facebook.com/v/10150568748925693"><embed src="http://www.facebook.com/v/10150568748925693" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowscriptaccess="always" allowfullscreen="true" width="680" height="508"></embed></object>

Here's the direct link to the video on Facebook:

http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=10150568748925693