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Old 26th July 2006   #1
HSG
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Default All curves are gorgeous


One of the most positive effects that plus-size models have upon society is that they show full-figured women the beauty of their natural curves, and demonstrate that so-called body "flaws" are not flaws at all, but just the opposite--irresistible aspects of feminine allure.

Here is just one example of how plus-size models can show the world that all womanly curves are normal, healthy--and beautiful.

* * *

Some of you may have noted the recent news flap about the freshly-crowned Miss Universe, who passed out cold at a press conference, just forty minutes after winning her crown.

Let's ignore, for a moment, the probability that this was just a publicity stunt, and take it at face value. The pageant organizers claim that the skeletal pageant-winner's fainting spell was not due to food deprivation. But their assertions are hardly credible.

We all remember what happened with the gorgeous Alicia Machado, who won the crown in 1996 (after admittedly starving herself for days). Shortly after winning, she set aside her diet regimen, and returned to more natural eating habits, which allowed her to regain her feminine curves. This scandalized the thin-supremacist pageant organizers, who threatened to strip her of her crown, simply because she had actually dared to become womanly and beautiful.

Here is a breathtaking image of Alicia Machado, at the time of her weight gain. It shows that she may have been the only woman ever to win the "Miss Universe" crown whose actually deserved the title.

But this post isn't about the Miss Universe pageant, or about Alicia per se, but about a specific detail in this photograph:

It clearly shows the young Venezuelan beauty exhibiting lovely natural curves along her back.

Although the modern media never allows these features to be seen, the soft curves of a woman's back have been celebrated as an irresistible aspect of feminine beauty throughout history. They are present in Rubens's greatest masterpiece, Venus before the Mirror (1613-14),

in Annibale Carraci's Venus with a Satyr and Cupids (c.1588),

and in countless other artistic masterpieces throughout the ages.

Even Hollywood--in its marginally saner days of yore--acknowledged the beauty of womanly features such as these. Elizabeth Taylor reveals soft contours in this sensual still image from the 1967 film, Reflections in a Golden Eye (co-starring Marlon Brando):

And in this, one of the few size-positive images ever published in Grace magazine, Italian siren Claudia Cardinale is completely unashamed of the soft fullness of her figure, as framed by her halter dress:

Today, however, actresses have become so repellently malnourished that their skin is stretched tautly across their protruding ribs, like that of Ethiopian famine victims.

The only icons of beauty who can undo the damage that these harmful and unhealthy images of female emaciation do to the self-regard of women everywhere are plus-size models, who remind the public that the soft curves of the back are natural aspects of womanly beauty.

The best exemplar of this (or any) figure-related theme is, of course, Barbara Brickner. This tiny image of Barbara in swimwear, from Lands' End, exhibits the aforementioned detail:

and the following image from the Spring 2006 Happy-Size.de catalogue shows the camera focussing precisely on the model's shapely curves:

Perhaps the best opportunity that plus-size models have to demonstrate the natural beauty of womanly contours is when they model formal apparel. Here we see Valerie Lefkowitz presenting a gown from David's Bridal, several seasons ago:

Click to enlarge

and here is Anna Loukachenets modelling an Aurora D'Paradiso Women's Bridal style. In both wedding images, the models' soft curves are clearly visible:

Click to enlarge

This halter-style prom dress effectively shows off Lindsey Garbelman's natural shape,

as does this new Nordstrom dress for Ford's curvy starlet Ashley Graham:

Click to enlarge

As an innately size-positive retailer, Torrid also celebrates the healthy curves of its most popular models. This prom-dress image features the gorgeous Christina Schmidt:

Click to view the source of this image

and this halter top, modelled by Kelsey Olson, even has a ribbon tied at the back to draw attention to the wearer's form:

Click to view the source of this image

One might have recommended a different hairstyle for model Gaynor Anema (Wolf Models, Germany) in the following test image, but her soft jacket beautifully embraces her figure:

Finally, it is particularly encouraging to see plus-size models celebrating this natural feature in lingerie promos. This ad for Lane Bryant's Cacique division is one of the most size-positive images of Kate Dillon's career, exhibiting not only the curves of her back, but even a shapely waist:

And the following tear sheet from the current issue of the Dutch plus-size magazine Big is Beautiful shows Euromodel.nl talent Laetitia. This soft, impressionistic lingerie editorial was photographed expressly to show readers that generous curves, such as Laetitia exhibits, are something that they should be proud of possessing.

Click to enlarge

Now ask yourselves: which are the true body "flaws": the aspects of soft fullness that a goddess displays when she maintains a healthy, natural figure; or the jutting ribs and knife-like shoulder-blades that poke through the skin of an undernourished model or actress--which recall the features of a dessicated corpse?

All curves are beautiful, and the contours of the back are normal (and attractive) aspects of feminine body shape. Only a lifetime of aesthetic indoctrination by the mass media could warp people's perceptions so greatly that they fail to recognize this as a natural physical attribute, or view the repulsively gaunt appearance of an emaciated frame as being a desirable aesthetic goal.

But plus-size models can reverse the effects of this harmful brainwashing, and allow society to rediscover the charms of natural, womanly beauty.


Last edited by HSG : 27th July 2006 at 02:00.
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Old 27th July 2006   #2
Jonathan
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Default Re: All curves are gorgeous

It has been stated before but it bears repeating: The reason that contemporary images that aspire to "sexiness" are so vulgar (rife as they are with artificial breasts and gynecological poses) is that beautiful, natural curves like these have been denounced.
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Old 27th July 2006   #3
M. Lopez
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Default ''Curves are the body's natural art''

When I look at these lovely images, I think of my favourite comment from Addition-Elle's "Make a Statement" promotion (the one where customers send in size-positive comments, to be posted on the store's web site):

"Curves are the body's natural art."

It's so true! Why would anyone want to look like a synthentic plastic mannequin, with flat, lifeless, plastic-looking surfaces - or worse, a concentration-camp survivor, showing every rib - is incomprehensible to me. Soft curves are what make a body feminine, and beautiful.
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Old 6th October 2006   #4
Kaitlynn
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Default Re: All curves are gorgeous

Although Barbara and Christina are my favourite dress models by far, I have one more Nordstrom image of Ashley Graham that I would like to share in this thread. Not so much for the dress- although I always appreciate it whenever retailers show reverse views on halter items (which are more important than front views, as the look of the back is what distinguishes a great halter style, showing that it doesn't ride too high). This dress is a little too long and, well, "flat" below the waist.

But I adore Nordstrom for a specific detail in this photo: for allowing the viewer to see that Ashley’s skin has the gently dimpled, "textured" look that soft flesh sometimes acquires. This is a perfectly normall characteristic, and yet for some reason, fashion photography seems to regard it as something to be hidden. But why? There's nothing wrong with it. It’s just another aspect of feminine beauty. And bravo to Nordstrom for showing that it is no detriment to a woman's allure.



It's especially gratifying that the public will be seeing it in an image of Ashley, because she is a younger model, and younger girls are especially sensitive about body image. I hope that many young women see this image, and realize that youthful "voluptuous vixens" do have this feature, and that it is a natural womanly trait, and doesn't detract from feminine beauty in any way.

http://shop.nordstrom.com/S/2907189...pbo=2377783&P=2
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Old 6th October 2006   #5
Chapman
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Default Re: All curves are gorgeous

I've long been disappointed that in a great deal of plus-size photography such detail is in fact airbrushed away. As any person who appreciates good design knows, attention to detail is both essential and indeed is often the factor that makes a painting/photograph/film/garment.

It is also rather sad that in my own experience it is these wonderful details that are most feared by some women. Yet as any admirer of the purity of feminine curves will agree, it is these wonderful wavelets within waves that create resonance.

Long time admirer, first time poster.
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Old 6th October 2006   #6
klara
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Default Re: All curves are gorgeous

I just have to tell this site makes me so hopeful. I am a full-figured woman living in Sweden. Here we don’t have that much fashion for those of us who are bigger. There is no Torrid.

I have read the posts at this forum for about half a year now but I have never posted. This thread I think is really interesting. It made me realise that the backs of most of the women and girls all over the world are curvy.

This site is showing me a world I did not know was there. I did not know there were models like Christina and Kelsey. It is sort of an "Oh, I exist"-experience. Because without them I had nothing to compare myself to.

And then this thread is also a sort of identification tool. I can look at the pictures and think "Ok, this is what normal girls look like". I confess I did not even know that before.

I am so grateful to this site for giving me a tool for identification and encouragement to look beautiful, even with my extra kilos.

I personally think plus-size girls are the most beautiful, and I have thought that for some years now. There was a time when I did not think so, though, so all the identification that I and other plus-size girls can get is worth everything.

I have always had a pretty face, but have always been hearing negative comments about size. It was not until I got 28 I started to ignore these comments, and started to embrace myself. And suddenly the guys came running. Of course this was because I accepted myself as I am, and decided to believe myself to be beautiful.

So I just have to thank this site, for a possible change of ideals, maybe even of my own. Thanks again to all of you who pay tribute to plus size.
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Old 7th October 2006   #7
vargas
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Default Re: All curves are gorgeous

Quote:
Originally Posted by klara
I have always had a pretty face, but have always been hearing negative comments about size. It was not until I got 28 I started to ignore these comments, and started to embrace myself. And suddenly the guys came running. Of course this was because I accepted myself as I am, and decided to believe myself to be beautiful.

As a full-figured woman myself I have found this to be true as well. Once a woman comes to love herself and accept her natural beauty she draws male attention to herself more easily. I think it debunks the idea that "most men" want thin women. Young women are told so many silly things that undermine their self-confidence, and then they have to spend the rest of their lives trying to regain their self-esteem! Once I began to see things more clearly, without all of the baggage and guilt that came along with not being thin I found that there are many men who prefer healthy-looking, curvy women.
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