When I consider how disappointing most "mainstream" magazines' recent plus-size-model editorials have been, and then I look at these haunting images, it breaks my heart that they weren't published. What we're looking at here could have shown the entire fashion world the perfect
way to photograph full-figured models. The images are ultra-chic and sophisticated, very artistic, yet boldly size-celebratory as well.
This editorial didn't resort to a faux-plus model with no curves to begin with and whose figure is diminished even further to look practically straight-size, as is usually the case when fashion ventures into plus-size territory. Nor do these images look anything like parodic "stunts." No, these images have all of the careful artistry of the most serious, sophisticated Vogue
editorials, but with a truly and visibly full-figured model whose curves are boldly, alluringly, seductively on display.
It's as if, for one moment, the "high" fashion industry broke out of its emaciated, androgynous aesthetic and adopted the Classical principles of plus-size beauty.
Seeing Kailee looking this curvy and adopting such passionate expressions reminds me why I became such an ardent fan of hers. I wish she would regain the curves she had at the time of this shoot. She is still plus-size today, but here, her figure was size-celebration incarnate, subversively soft and curvy.
Originally Posted by HSG
It is closely akin to Kailee's legendary Glamour tear sheet
, with a similar pose of the body. However, what makes this image even more beguiling is the smouldering passion in the model's eyes and the bewitching manner in which she strokes her devil-red tresses, acting out a gesture which the viewer subconsciously yearns to perform. Although Kailee's black lingerie for Glamour
was even more revealing, this bustier has a yet-higher seductive power. Not only does it daringly showcase the model's buxom voluptuousness, but it displays a soft swell of fullness at the model's waist.
It's interesting to set the two images alongside one another. There is a similarity in some ways, especially in the poses. But the contrast in emotions is fascinating. For Glamour,
Kailee became the doe-eyed innocent (fittingly so, for a lifestyle publication). But for Modern Bride,
she transformed into the seductively wicked temptress. It's a day/night, light/dark pairing, except with the black/white lingerie colours reversed.
Yet both of these divergent effects were achieved while still celebrating the beauty of the soft, feminine figure. This is a testament to how much variety the plus-size aesthetic provides (and also an expression of Kailee's prodigious talent).
Oh, and while I cropped the Glamour
image to match the Modern Bride
photo, I still enjoy the text that accompanied the original, complete page: