India’s first ever plus size fashion show – aLL went wrong

Lakme Fashion Week Autumn/Winter 2016 showcased India’s first ever plus size fashion show in association with the brand ‘aLL’. Keeping up with the international pulse of celebrating all types of bodies, Indian fashion industry took a big leap when they decided to go ahead with a plus size clothing fashion show and handpicked 10 plus size models through rigorous auditions. Let’s be honest, most of us have gained enough mass around the midriff to rejoice such an effort. But when the show went live, many overweight people felt disappointed, rather threatened with the idea of fashion for plus size, the way it was presented during the show. The models were presented like hip-hop artists wearing chains, hoodies, leather jackets, hoops, studded B-boy caps, beanies, chunky belts and ankle-high sports shoes. The show was curated by Little Shilpa and she wanted to show the fun and carefree side of the generally underrated size category by styling them like the back street hip-hop stars performing with their high voltage confidence.

aLL, plus size clothing, Lakme Fashion Week, India

Underrated size category, definitely agreed, but low in confidence is rather far fetched assumption for plus size people. I have seen many overweight men and women carry themselves with elan and with much style and confidence than others. The very assumption that they never show their carefree and  confident style is a dent in the idea of promoting plus size clothing in the Indian fashion industry. College going plus size men and women are already dressing in the so called hip-hop fashion. So this fashion show was nothing exclusive. Nothing Lakme Fashion Week worthy! Though, it did help launch careers of the 10 chosen plus size models or may be add to their CV value. But as an audience, or a plus size fashion consumer, there was very little for us to take back home. There was no inspiration, no enthusiasm.

aLL, plus size fashion India, Lakme Fashion Week

In the brand aLL’s defense, I would say that they cater to casual wear for the plus size consumer and cannot procure couture pieces for the show. They would showcase whatever they have to offer off their shelf. But as an audience, may be we were expecting more. We were expecting sexy silhouettes, curvy embellished gowns, flowing ensembles, just like the other brands who strutted on the fashion week runway this season for the so called normal sized people. This show left the plus size consumer high and dry. Can we have plus size fashion in India which is Ashley Graham worthy?

Obsessed with this whole look! Thank you @naeemkhannyc for my custom dress! #vmas

A photo posted by A S H L E Y G R A H A M (@theashleygraham) on

Hoping to see other plus size brands showcase the best they have in bridal wear, ethnic wear, handlooms and couture in the plus size category. But why create a separate show all together? I think other brands should showcase one or two plus size pieces in each collection they present during the fashion show. Include size 16 (UK) and above in your collection if you want to reach larger market in India.

What do you guys think? How is the plus size fashion market in India?

About MumbaiGloss

Parimita Chakravorty is an author, blogger, features writer and a communications specialist. She has written for various popular magazines and websites related to beauty, fashion, jewellery and lifestyle, including HAIR India, Femina.in, BeBeautiful.in, Hello, etc. She has also contributed to various youth blogs and magazines. Her book ‘Look Stunning At Any Size’ has been well appreciated and received by the readers. Currently, she is part of India’s leading IT brand and takes care of their internal communications. Parimita is also working towards bringing awareness about Endometriosis in India; a silent epidemic which is consuming a lot of lives. She manages a page ‘Endometriosis India Files’ where patients discuss their condition and diagnosis.
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