The Tom & Lorenzo Archives: 2006 -2011
Our current site is here:

Mark Fast Spring 2010

It's controversial day here on T Lo! sets the scene:
"Larger-sized women championed by London's cult leader of skinny, cobwebby knitted dressing? Unlikely but true, and when it came to it, Mark Fast courageously followed through on his convictions. "A lot of people think it's not appropriate to use plus-size models," he said. "But I met these girls and I loved their charisma. [...]

This season there was a move forward, vaguely inspired, Fast said, by watching twenties Egyptian silent-movie epics and Erin Brockovich. That could account, sort of, for the feathery fringed skirt on a scoop-neck dress, the sucked-to-the-body dresses (including a good one in lemon and beige), and an incendiary girdle and bra in cinnamon.

Still, Fast's attraction is more in his technique—and the way he thinks of his knitting as a close cousin of hosiery rather than sweater dressing."

We think this collection is both beautiful and unique. We also applaud his use of larger women, rather than relying on the same stick-skinny silhouette that all of fashion reveres. We do have a slight issue, however. It's this: these are the kinds of clothes that no woman we know over a size 6 would ever consider wearing: skin-tight, see-through, with big holes cut out of them. Why can't we see a collection modeled by larger women wearing clothes that actually flatter them?

Watch the show:

[Photos: - Video: YouTube/lamagnifiquemode]

Post a Comment

Love the variety of models. Half of this stuff is fug, half of it is pretty cool.

Those are the deadest looking models I've seen. There is not a facial expression, nor even a glimpse of life in a single pair of eyes. I couldn't focus on the clothes for the zombie models distracting me. As to the model size issue, putting a couple of size 8 models out there isn't much of a blow for the "real-size" market, is it?

honestly these clothes are so unflattering that the make even the skinnier models look hippy and dumpy.

i vote nay.

I think I counted 3 (?) "large" women. The designs are interesting and funky, but not exactly mainstream. I'm not sure if any "normal" women (aside from Britney-wait not normal), regardless of size, want parts of their nekkid anatomy hangin' out. Just sayin'. He makes a nice doily, though :-)

Oy vey.

The "dresses" he put on the bigger girls look like they were made for a smaller woman and then he squeezed the bigger girls into them. WTF? Why not make the dress fit the model? Is he mocking the bigger girls?

Also, there is SO MUCH NIPPLE on this runway. Why, why, why, why are designers obsessed with nipple show through? The pink mini-dress with the crocheted boobies is a joke, right?

It has been a weird day here at Chez TLo. That's for sure.

This comment has been removed by the author.

THESE are a variety of models? Aside from the occasional lump of flesh, they look like genetic freaks to me.

Again, these are not + size in the true sense of the word. I think I would have been prouder of him for just choosing some variety in his models, and not shouting out "Gee those fat girls have great personalities."

No less offensive than putting white models in black face. I know from where I speak, my immediate family is both multi-racial and multi-sized.

Um, those look like normal size women to me - so now a size 8 or 10 is Plus Sized? There is no hope....


First, I applaud his use of more "normal-sized" models, but even for runway models I agree they look like zombies.

I actually think the collection is interesting and very pretty, but realistically I know few women (plus sexy or not) who would wear such skin-tight garments with their lady bits all but hanging out all over the place.

Does anyone else think of Michael Knight's coffee filter dress when they look at some of these pieces?

I wanted to say, "Hooray! Healthy models!" but ended up saying, "Why do half of the models have meth face?" That's not attractive on anyone.

Kudos to the couple of "larger" women (I put that in "" because they look like maybe size 8. Not what I'd consider truly "plus-size") But I don't really like any of the clothes (on anyone) and good God what is up with their faces? They either look dead, scared, or about to cry.

You're right though, no "plus-size" women would ever where this stuff anyway and actually think it looked good on themselves. I'm a size 12 or 14 (depending on the dress) and I certainly wouldn't dare even try to get into any of these.

That header shot looks just like fungi on a log in autumn. Not a good look.


Like it or not, the industry standard holds that anyone above a size 6 is considered plus-sized.

I appreciate the idea, but the execution is terrible. It would help if he had actually designed clothes in a size that would fit the models. Still, props for trying, especially since apparently a couple of the stylists quit the show over "creative differences" when they discovered they'd have to work with *gasp* "plus-size" models.

Also I cannot stand those shoes in the first couple shots. I also think Peter Pan shoes or something when I see them and that's not good.

I bet it's really hard for the dressers to do the quick changes with all thoses snaggies.

There were a few dresses that weren't *completely* awful, but it looked like an amateur collection, and a bit of a skank fest to me. Why would he put a woman in a tiny pair of underwear that makes more bumps on her body and makes her hips look mangled? The frippery with the beads was awful, the holes were straight out of a bad 1980s hair metal video, and not a single one of the ladies, especially the "plus sized" size tens looked anything but pissed off and probably embarassed to be there. He obviously didn't design for plus sized women, he decided to squeeze a few size 10s into size 4s.

Massive fail on all levels.

here's where i get nitpicky.

I counted, generously, 5 out of 25 looks that could be considered "plus-sized," even though, by normal standards, they are probably smaller than the average woman.

Worse yet, by Fast saying, ""A lot of people think it's not appropriate to use plus-size models," he said. "But I met these girls and I loved their charisma. [...]" it's like saying, "I like fat girls, I deserve a pat on the back."

God, if I hear one more person say they like big girls because they "have a great personality" or a "pretty face," I think I will punch them in the face.

Here's an idea: how about you make really beautiful clothes, put them on beautiful, healthy women of all sizes, and keep you fucking mouth shut? Because really, it's not a big fucking deal.

*steps down from soap box"

I got news for you TLO - go to any mall and you will see fat chicks wearing skin tight clothes with cut outs and their guts hanging out... who knew that mall trash were really emanating high fashion???

Totally agree with you though... no sensible, truly sexy woman with curves would wear that crap outside of the bedroom

It really looks like he deliberately picked the tightest, shortest dresses for the normal sized models. They look like their stuffed into knit sausage casings.

*sigh* I guess it's worth something that he tried, but it looks like a big ole failure to me.

How scary that these women are considered "large"!

I love the collection, but don't understand why the bigger girls are wearing the stuff that shows their underwear so prominently. That's a bit of a turnoff, but maybe that's some kind of issue of my own I need to work on?

I don't like the clothes, the styling, or the idea of making women who have beautiful figures look heavy when they aren't.

for some reason this collection reminds me of butterflies. i think it's a combination of the ruffles, the openwork, and the colour story. like you, i think it's lovely (though as other have said, rather breezy!), but i wish he'd allowed all the models to smile.

and you're right, the size 8 ladies are NOT being flattered by those dresses. *winces* i should know, i am one.

desertwind said...

I love the collection, but don't understand why the bigger girls are wearing the stuff that shows their underwear so prominently. That's a bit of a turnoff, but maybe that's some kind of issue of my own I need to work on?

I agree, interesting work, but why are the larger women wearing poorly-fitted outfits?

I thought this was an interesting collection. Not everything in it rocked my world, but some of it was really clever and eye-catching. I especially liked the dress that looked like it was modeled after lichen. As for the plus models, I thought they looked good, but I'd look good, took, if I was that size. In fact, I aspire to be that size.

Those dresses on the normal-sized girls are painfully unflattering. They cling to every curve - and NOT in a good way.

I am a size 8, and I would never be caught dead in that. I know how to dress myself.

I like the fact that they used a few normal sized/larger women. The collection? Like TLO said, beautiful and unique. It's not my personal aesthetic, but most of what I see on this blog isn't. (Jeans + t-shirts, <3)

If those are plus sized women, then I must be a hippo. Self esteem at an all time high!

10/14/09 2:43 PM Like it or not, the industry standard holds that anyone above a size 6 is considered plus-sized.

The maybe the "industry" needs to be awaken like the American manufacturers - like car makers - who thought that everyone would just keep buying?

This also reminds me of a job I had years ago. The co wasn't known for women in higher positions. I got hired into a dept with a new woman mgr who was AWFUL - acting bat-shit power mad and crazy. Word was that they promoted the biggest loser so that they could say "SEE we told you so - women aren't fit to lead".
.."see, bigger women don't look good on the runway" - the heck with putting them in pretty clothes that fit.

I think the whoe collection is FUG - no matter who is wearing it.

Oh my. That black macrame/whatever dress makes the model look like she has a huge black bush.

And word, word, word, on the models looking like zombies, on their panties being way too small, and them not being that big anyway.

Lagerfeld must be covered in hives just by looking at it....

Wtf with the pantie lines on the models. The larger (ha!) ones specially. Did they put them in underwear too small on purpose?!

Hey! Zombies is IN. Maybe that's what they were going for.. ;)

Controversy Day--
My favorite holiday!

And here I thought you were gonna try to distract us with some pretty.

Those aren't all plus size models, are they?

As for the dresses. . . some nice things, but I'm a size 4-6, and I still wouldn't wear most of that - nor would I have when I was as young as the models. Well, maybe some of the less tight ones, but nothing that short, sheer, or holey,

Defining "plus" as a US size 6-8 is bullshit.

What I continue to fail to understand is how so many designers are able to get away with ignoring far more than a simple majority of the market. There just aren't that many 20 year old girls out there who can afford designer clothes. How do they stay in business?

It didn't appear that the dresses on the larger models were very well fitted. Use models of any size, but please, attend to the fittings beforehand. The last black dress on the larger model did appear to fit well, so I could see what the look was really about. And that's what counts, right?

Also, underwear on the runway? Modesty has it's place, but it really detracted from several of the looks.

Oh my, no. The models look like they're in great pain (maybe from having to wear so much fug?), and the larger sizes are especially unflattering. Just no.

Oh, but that said .. there were a few looks that were kind of nice.

I liked the feather skirt on the one and few of the others with a little more coverage.

A lot of this just looks like slutty club-wear that's too tight. And what's with the hair and makeup? These models all look like they've got the flu and are running out to Wal-Mart for tissues and cough syrup.


There is something definitely wrong in this world where these models are considered +plus+ size. Oh the obesity!

TLo, I'm calling you to task for not point that out. None of these models classify as plus.

I bet the largest is equal to the size of a 'normal' American women and just on border of the plump side of a normal UK woman.

ugh. fug. fugfugfug. NOT the way to get plus size models into the rotation. They look AWFUL, because anyone wearing this crap would look awful!


the industry standard holds that anyone above a size 6 is considered plus-sized.

Dear God, that is scary. If this is the case, no wonder so many models look so haggard.

I'll give this designer some credit for using some models who actually have breasts and hips.

Anonymous said...

TLo, I'm calling you to task for not point that out. None of these models classify as plus.

T Lo didn't call them plus-sized. The designer did. And by industry standards, they ARE plus-sized models.

Wow, those models are pissed OFF by having to wear such skank wear! Beautiful, interesting skank wear, but "Pretty Woman" nonetheless. I guess he nailed it, since it's established that the inspiration was Erin Brokovich. Jeez, the poor plus-sized models look like pastel-colored sausages.

You don't have to be under a size 6to look good in (or be willing to wear) revealing clothing. At 5'11" and a size 8/9 I am VERY thin and could easily pull off most of these outfits (if the clothing was fitted properly.) Having said that, it is obvious that several of these women were NOT fitted properly. Therefore, they ended up looking bigger than they actually are... which kind of defeats the purpose of having a show with plus-sized models! (wasn't the point to prove that larger women can look just as good on the runway as the smaller models???) The zombie-ish makeup doesn't help the case either. Something is 'off' here, IMO.
Rant ended,

So THAT'S where my old macrame planters from the 70's wound up!

re: the "dead eyed" models: once again quoting the master, Patsy Stone: "it's the same thing every month. A model, in make-up, with a vacant look on her face."


I thought the designs were pretty and interesting, and I appreciate the use of bigger models as an idea. However, throwing in a few size 8/10 girls in outfits that doesn't even flatter them just comes off as a little conceited and almost gimmicky - especially when all the other models were just as bordering-on-eating-disorder-thin as in in almost all other shows...

But I suppose it's something.

The "larger" women are sexy, no reason not to use them. But these clothes are ugly. They deserve better.

I'm very glad that he decided to use a variety of body types, but the clothes don't do anything for me. And what is with designers and nipples lately?

Anyone else see those dresses and think, "Barnacles!"

Plus size girls tend to have a little more going on up top. We (non-silicone) D+ girls cannot go without a bra without venturing deep into National Geographic territory. I didn't see a single thing in this collection that was bra-friendly.

"Like it or not, the industry standard holds that anyone above a size 6 is considered plus-sized."

This is ridiculous. I believe it, but it makes no sense. The plus-size stores I shop at usually don't even carry anything below a size 14. I wear a 16, but I've been told I don't "look" plus-size because I'm tall (5'10"). So if a size 8 girl who's my height is considered "large," I suppose I'd be considered a freakin' mammoth on the runway. And it's too bad, because my walk is fierce.

Come on. Isn't anybody going to say he stole the idea for the one with lavendar petals from Leanne?

People, you disappoint me.

I saw that little picture for the teaser shot to this entry and it definitely looks like those fungus on a tree. It grosses me out. Nobody wants to wear a fungal dress.

10/14/09 3:06 PM
If those are plus sized women, then I must be a hippo. Self esteem at an all time high!

I'm with you anonymous... and no wonder today Kate Hudson was called "hippy"....
oy :-(

A quick second note: I actually wouldn't wear this stuff myself (it is my belief that "slutty" clothing should be saved for the bedroom).


Lelê @ 3:12 PM

Wtf with the pantie lines on the models. The larger (ha!) ones specially. Did they put them in underwear too small on purpose?!

That's exactly the first thing I noticed. Not the clothes. Not the models or their body shapes, but WTF WHY IS THEIR UNDERWEAR DIGGING INTO THEIR SKIN? I don't proclaim myself an expert, but I'm pretty sure panties aren't supposed to do that. Maybe I'm doing it wrong, idk. ;)

Other than that, nothing really caught my eye and made me say, "Wow", like so many other collections here. I'm no prude and all for showing skin, but honestly, the only piece I even remotely liked was the 5th row down, 1st dress. The one that has sleeves and likely wouldn't allow the world to be your gyno if you wore it in public.

today is not my day so with that thought in mind, i hate everything.

This comment has been removed by the author.

Well, kudos to Fast for at least recognizing an objection many people have to the fashion world, no matter how effectively he did or did not address it.

I don't understand it. There is obviously a sizable market for couture clothes shown in the 8-12 sizes (if not above). There is a gigantic market for a fashion magazine that is upfront (at least) about its use of Photoshop, or refrains entirely, and that shows a variety of sizes and skin colors. Why for the love of sweet baby Jesus is no one taking advantage of those untapped markets? In a time when print media can't fold fast enough, it seems like a high fashion magazine that celebrates the shapes, ages and ethnicities of all women would be a total cash cow.

It must suck when your designs are so ugly they make the models sad.

I can't get past the cadaverous styling. What is with the zombie like makeup lately?
I hate the entire collection. I think it makes fun of plus sized models rather than showcasing their curves. And WTH is plus sized about sizes 6, 8, 10?? I must admit that in spite of my love of fashion, I am disturbed and replused by a lot of today's "style".

I love those fringy, beady cab driver seat cover looking things.

The whole collection is hit or miss; a few fabulous things mixed with WTF? But beyond that, no one who's plus-size should be wearing this stretchy, holey stuff, just like no one who's not on a swim team should be wearing a Speedo. It's just wrong.


I'm guessing the collection is supposed to show off the female body as is, but it is definitely unflattering and not wearable.

Apparently there was controversy behind the scenes with the decision to cast "non-standard" models; actually a stylist quit over it or something like that and the looks were criticized because the larger models were not wearing the optimal foundation garments. I also think he had previously come under fire for making clothes that were not seen as women friendly, and the casting was a response to that; if I find the article I will post it.

I think he had good intentions and he deserves a decent amount of positive reinforcement for the idea; hopefully next time it would be better executed.

sluty sluty sluty! Let's see, short, tight... if they were only shiny, they would have hit the trifecta...

And I think they put the 'plus size' girls in underwear because he stuffed them into too-small sized clothing and it would show all their bits otherwise. Just a hunch. Why, oh why, can't anyone manage to make a woman over a size 2 look sexy in fashion? Happens in real life all the time! Doesn't seem that tough to do.

Fug clothes!

And the "large" models are wearing their thongs too tight. They have a nice little indention on the sides that's especially noticeable in the blue dress.

The long black dress looks like something Cher would have worn to the Oscars back in the 80s.

I can see some of these looks as layering pieces over leggings and tops. But as is? Um, no thanks.

"A lot of people think it's not appropriate to use plus-size models," he said. "But I met these girls and I loved their charisma. [...]

Sounds like the blind date fix-up line,She has a "great personality"

By deliberately stuffing "larger" women into clothing at least three sizes too small (including their underwear), the designer definitely pulled off a look. Not a good look, but a look. I don't blame the models for looking like they're about to cry; having to parade around in clothes that make perfectly normal-sized, attractive women look like skanky sausages is not my idea of fashion. A few words that describe the whole show are "patronizing," "insulting," and "offensive."

And yes, way to go making normal-sized women look awful on the runway. To prove the point, of course, that they don't belong there.

Blergh. A total mess.

NEWSFLASH: It is possible to be over a size 6 AND toned.

Neat ideas. They could be sexy, but some of them did derail rather violently. My biggest problem is VPL. it is ENTIRELY possible for a size 10 woman to wear panties that don't cinch her hip. I can't believe an actual designer allowed VPL on a runway.

Thank you, "Laura47"!


That webbing is unkind to larger women; it screams "There's fat in here and it's caged! HELP! HELP! LET ME OUT!"

Kind of defeats the purpose of having non-starved women on the runway, if you ask me.

Bleh. Love the idea, hate the execution.

Loved the models, hated the dresses.

Are those coffee filters? Oh, wait, it's not a Gristedes challenge. I forgot. So did Mark Fast, I guess.

Sorry...this collection screams "hoochie-mama". The models look like they were forced at gunpoint to wear these rags.

if they're not wearing bras, why are they wearing panties? the clothes are already tight and unflattering, and then panty-lines AND visible panties?

this whole show looks amateurish and badly thought out. like other commenters have said, it looks like it's trying to prove women over a size 4 shouldn't be on runways, but then again, even the skinny models have the horrible panty thing going on.

plus the dead-looking faces are disconcerting. hot mess. not even that; cold mess.

Wow, I'm speechless about how counterproductive this is.

Okay, you caught me -- I'm not speechless: I'm a huge champion of bigger models, but this basically screams "See how bad 'big' models look on the runway? No wonder we don't normally do this!" Come on - throw us a bone here. Actually put big girls in things that they look GOOD in!

Bleah. Clothes that wouldn't look good on anyone, IMO.

Of course, it's good that he's using some slightly larger models, but really, it'd be nice if he'd put them in better clothes.

It'd also be nice if people stopped using 'size' as some sort of standard for how thin someone is, like there's no variance in builds. I'd also like to win the lottery. And to get a pony.

I didn't like the collection at all. Vulgar and quite tacky.

Fast said, "But I met these girls and I loved their charisma."

You could have fooled me. These have to be the most unhappy-looking women I've seen in a long time.

One thing that breaks my heart about plus-size clothing is that much of it removes any sense of class or dignity that the outfit should help the woman maintain. You often see either the tarp effect or the skank effect--too much or not nearly enough. The freshest, most beautifully feminine styles are typically saved for the smaller figures, and suddenly plus-size clothing is no longer as beautiful and womanly as it could have been.

Here we have a hooker wear line for plus-size women sponsored by Mr. Coffee. If you want to successfully design for plus-size women, then stop marginalizing them as the Other.

Most of the pieces look like old fashioned underwear -- think corsets -- and fugly! As for the models, they may be a bit larger than the usual ones but by no means look like real, i.e. size 14 and up, women.
The designer missed the boat in my book.

Yay! Thanks for posting this, you two are so good. I LOVED THIS COLLECTION!
I have to disagree with you, knits are EVERYBODY'S friend. The problem isn't larger women wearing tight clothes with holes cut out. The problem is insect thin models who's bodies resemble more of a lady boy than an ACTUAL LADY wearing tight clothes with the wholes cut out. It makes the appearance of a size 12 woman seem vulgar, even though we see them EVERYDAY in real life. If bigger women walked the runway as the norm. skinny models would freek us all out.
I'm a 10 and I will be wearing whatever of this collection I can get my hands on (and squeeze my ass in). Thank you very much!

Do you think the instruction the models got before going down the runway was "Ok girls! Look like you are wishing for your own death! Now go!"

being large and lovely myself, i say yay! true t+l, larger women are just as sexy as the skinnies, but should wear clothes that are more flattering. i love the black dress, 2nd to last, on the heavier model. one lasting annoyance - you're young, beautiful, employed, and you can't smile????????

I actually like some of the pieces, slutty though they are. Really, though, I say bring back Korto!

Plus sized models? Only two of them looked "plus sized" to me, and even then, they're not even "plus sized" at a size 6-8.

Pex said:

"Do you think the instruction the models got before going down the runway was "Ok girls! Look like you are wishing for your own death! Now go!""
I'd say yes!

I was intrigued, I liked the look of a lot of the clothes as a "look," as textile art - but even on a skinny young girl, most of them are a little revealing for most situations.

I'd love to see a version of these modified for a broader audience, though no doubt that'd ruin the vision.

And, for the record, I really hate cut-outs that show the bottom of the boob.

I love the collection and the use of bigger models but more attention should have been paid to the bigger models' undergarments.

The foundations were flawed and the outfits looked horrible as a result.

Wow, some of these pieces are to die. The others are kinda wonky, but structurally beautiful. I do think there are some fit issues, and I;m not talking about the plus size models (Which, by the way, woohoo! I love the fact that the plus size models were kept even though a few of Fast's people quit because they were in the show). The supposedly "good" lemon and beige piece is completely unflattering on the size 0 model. If it actually fit and wasn't so damn sheer (Hello Nip City!), it would've been drop dead.

Still, I think it was a great step for fashion AND the modeling world. Now if only there was a fashion show that included plus-size models only...

There is not one single plus sized woman on this runway. Not one. There are, however, quite a large number of dead-looking women wearing some butt-ugly clothes.

I applaud using large models, but I loathe the way Mark Fast went about it. The fact that the clothes didn't even FIT let alone FLATTER the models made it clear that this had nothing to do with 'real-size' and everything to do with publicity. The media storm surrounding it was unwarranted and frankly disgusting. I've never heard of the label before, but now that I do, I couldn't care less about it.

The joke's on somebody--these are nothing but ridiculously high-priced hooker clothes. And for low-priced hookers, too.

Good grief.

Is there something about the cut of the sleeves that causes bad posture or is it just an illusion they create?

This just smells of indulgent self-congratulations. He appears to want to be celebrated for using "plus-sized" models and loving their charisma. He then, as Amanda noted, shoved them into dresses made for smaller models, so the 10 more pounds or so that they have relative to the other models is very salient, then he styles them like coma patients. How exactly does this show their charisma?

doesn't he sound like a guy trying to explain his fat girlfriend to people, "oh, she has a great personality".

While on one hand, I am glad to see a designer incorporating women who look healthier into a runway collection, these clothes are massively unflattering to everyone. Interesting, perhaps, but still unflattering.

Serenity Now said...

There is not one single plus sized woman on this runway. Not one.

What? What's plus-sized for you? 400 pounds?

Thank you ASK! I'd like to propose a TLo ban on sentiments like "like it or not, industry standards are that a size 6-8 is plus sized".

It adds nothing to the conversation, and does nothing to address a serious issue.

Imagine where we'd be if the status quo were always percieved to be absolute.

"Like it or not, its the industry standard to hire 8 year olds for factory labor."

"Like it or not, its the industry standard to have two seperate water fountains."

"Like it or not, its industry standard for your boss to slap you on the ass"

Sometimes, industry standards need to be changed.

I don't love it, but I don't hate it.

I think his point is to show different types of female bodies in his clothing. It's not about flattering or covering flaws, but showing the women's bodies as they are, and maybe changing perceptions.

There seems to be a lot of rethinking of models and body types going on in Europe right now. For instance, the whole Brigitte magazine issue (they are going to use "real women" instead of models) and Karl Lagerfeld's comments. I'm hoping we will start seeing women of various sizes and shapes as models--beautiful women, yeah, but tall, short, and of different builds and, of course, races. Everybody wears clothes.

Mark Fast is someone who should never render any of his clothes in black or "cinnamon" ever again. The more I look at the first two thirds of this collection, the more I'm liking it, but those last nine or so dresses just look like a Rorschach test.

Whitney said...
I'd like to propose a TLo ban on sentiments like "like it or not, industry standards are that a size 6-8 is plus sized".

I'd like to propose that you a)create your own blog b) go read another blog. What a nerve!

Seriously? The only "larger" size model or outfit that someone over a size 14 would wear is the gray sweater dress. Even that would need to be paired with leggings or scrunched over a pencil skirt.

Whitney said...

Thank you ASK! I'd like to propose a TLo ban on sentiments like "like it or not, industry standards are that a size 6-8 is plus sized".

It adds nothing to the conversation, and does nothing to address a serious issue.

It directly addresses all those comments that said "These aren't plus-sized models!"

Personally, I don't think any of the dresses are flattering at all. Interesting and maybe a starting-off point but not as they are. Some of them remind me of the crochet cotton beach coverups my Mom wore in the 70s. And the larger models look like they've been squeezed into too-small garments which is never a good look.

We are all aware that a size 14 woman who is 5ft9in has a different body type than a size 14 woman who is 5ft zero inches, right?
Let's face it people not a lot of women are "industry standard". So why do we still give a shit about the industry?
I thought it was a sexy sexy sexy show. None sexier then the "big" girls, but, someone needs to teach them a runway walk.

I believe some designers don't want women with a BMI between 19 and 25 on the runway, because it would call their bluff on the clothes they design.

Suddenly, the concepts (or "illusion", as Unkle Karl says) they were going for doesn't look so great anymore! See how the crochet dresses don't look that great on the larger models? But on the skinnier ones, it's like you can almost say, "Hmm, I wonder if I could pull that off?" Even though you know you can't.

Ick. It looks like he gave a bunch of second graders a ball of yarn and a bag of pony beads and told them to go for it.

The models all look like they're coming down from a week long bender. I'm not sure that's the look I'd want associated with my clothes if I were a designer.

While most of the models are not "normal-sized", at least he used some plus-sized models. My only problem is, he put them in the most unflattering clothes possible. The whole collection in general is not very attractive. Also, the models look very dead...

Like it or not, industry standards are that a size 6-8 is plus sized is beginning to sound a lot like Mad Men's Betty saying "Maybe it's not the right time for integration." It's insulting and tiresome. This week fashion has told me that wearing an afro is a cartoonish style, that people would prefer to see a white woman painted rather than look at my own naturally brown skin, and that a possible size 8 is the closest I will get to seeing a plus size model pn the runway. Not only that, but apparently I should applaud these designers for this?
I am deeply sadden and angry.

Wait, let me get this straight. The guy used plus sized models and now everyone is complaining that he didn't use even larger models?

MyFawny said...

Like it or not, industry standards are that a size 6-8 is plus sized is beginning to sound a lot like Mad Men's Betty saying "Maybe it's not the right time for integration."

Yes, because the "right" of people to see large models on the runway is EXACTLY the same as the struggle American blacks went through to gain their civil rights.

Jesus Christ, that's offensive.

I thought of bracket fungus instantly when seeing that header shot, too. While many mushrooms in their natural settings are quite striking and even beautiful, this look ain't.

Dead-eyed models in fugly clothes. No thanks.

None of those pieces looked good on any of those models. I'm not sure who would look good in them.

MyFawny said...

Like it or not, industry standards are that a size 6-8 is plus sized is beginning to sound a lot like Mad Men's Betty saying "Maybe it's not the right time for integration."

Yes, because the "right" of people to see large models on the runway is EXACTLY the same as the struggle American blacks went through to gain their civil rights.

Jesus Christ, that's offensive.

Because of my right as someone not a size 6 or 8 to be able to see myself in society without it either being either the subject of ridicule or something to be applauded. Because I'm a larger sized (20), black woman with un weaved, non chemically straighten hair. So I get tired of people telling me no one wants to see me. You're offended? I'm insulted every day.

It amazes me how personally some of you take this.

Yes, because the "right" of people to see large models on the runway is EXACTLY the same as the struggle American blacks went through to gain their civil rights.

Jesus Christ, that's offensive.

gonna second that. Good grief.

I went n' looked at the collection again. It's not's little fish caught in the plant hangers.

YECH. I need to cleanse my eyeball palatte. I'm gonna go oggle the Versaci again...

While I do applaud the use of "plus-sized" models, almost all the clothes are disgusting. It looks like they raided Grandma's crochet flowerpot holders and decided they would make "clothes" out of them. Every single model looks like they are going to burst through their outfit. It almost feels like the designer is making fun of them and showing them off like freaks to the fashion community.

I actually like the look of the non-size-0 models. It surprises me how much I like it. So, I'll give this guy points for that even though I don't like his collection.

The models look unhappy because the world is their gynecologist.

Anonymous said:

What? What's plus-sized for you? 400 pounds?

Um no, 400 lbs probably falls in the morbidly obese category.

It is patently absurd to suggest that any woman that fits into a size 6-8 is a plus anything. The fact that it may be considered the industry "standard" does not negate the fact that the industry standard is ridiculous.

And I hardly think that Fast's use of models who weigh slightly more than poodles and who are shoved into ugly clothing that is too small for them is anything to get all self-righteous about.

So a size "0" model can walk the runway in plastic bubble skirts, eye searing fluorescents, and shoulder pads (heaven help us) but the second a size "12" model walks out with exposed underwear THEN fashion designer's are making women look bad. That does not make a lot of sense.
I think it's like any other runway show. Some of it is ready to wear but most o fit would need to be tweeked and altered depending on where it was being worn.
I would like to feel the texture of some of the garments. It looks IDK squishy or something.

Some of these pieces are very nice. And if some of the dresses were lined, they would be very beautiful and wearable.

To sum up this collection, I'd like to quote what every 2-year-old says when something bad happens: Uh oh.

I just really didn't need any of this. Ha.

Some of you are howling at the gross injustice of a size 6-8 being considered "plus size".

I think we pretty much all agree that the plus-sized girls look terrible in these get-ups, no? What may look sexy-but-chic on a size 0 may look trashy and slightly absurd on a size 8. I'd imagine that these clothes would look comical on a size 18.

Many of you seem to be laboring under the illusion that fashion models are supposed to represent a broad cross-section of the population.

The term "plus size" in modeling simply isn't interchangeable with "plus size" sizes. It's in relation to the standard size of 0-2. Get over it, it's industry terminology. said,
"Mark Fast courageously followed through on his convictions"

It's nice that he used a few plus models, but sorry, I don't associate the word "courageously" with fashion design.

We're at war for Chrissakes!


Lisa said "I think we pretty much all agree that plus sized girls look terrible in these get-ups, no?"
Uhm, no actually.
What EXACTLY is the problem with the way these 3 women look in the clothes? So what, is it that they look fat or is it that they don't look skinny? I don't get it.
OBVIOUSLY runway models do not represent the typical woman, it's just that a vast majority of women don't know that, and trust, these 3plus sized models don't represent the typical woman. They are 6 foot tall godesses that so INFURIATED fashion industry "insiders" with their mere pressence (FEMALE BODIES)that they QUIT THIER JOBS rather then be associated with the show that they spent weeks working on. I find that comical! Not to mention childish, elitist, and absurd.

May I also point out that if one thinks that something that looks chic and sexy on a size 0 looks comical on a size 8, perhaps they have been labouring under a certain delusion for a bit too long.

Alexis said...
They are 6 foot tall godesses that so INFURIATED fashion industry "insiders" with their mere pressence (FEMALE BODIES)that they QUIT THIER JOBS rather then be associated with the show that they spent weeks working on.

That's quite a logical leap you're making there. If I was the show's stylist I would have quit too. Not because plus-sized models "infuriate" me but because they looked absolutely awful in these particular looks.

I have a big fat ass and i don't want to see women in too-small undies shoved into too-small stocking dresses full of ladders/runs. I want my fashion pretty. that means tall, thin models. I hate it when the models are too thin and we can see their ribs, but I also do not want to see their panty lines. But this was not "using plus sized models," this was fetishizing "larger" women. Those models, in garments that fit, would have barely registered as larger than other models. they were styled to look FAT, when they are nothing of the sort.
Tacky, dude.

i really cannot tell very well which are the "plus" models and which aren't. I think they all look like shit that got snarled in the washing machine and is unraveling.

One or two of these models look a little curvier, but yeesh.

ugly clothes. disappointingly un-plump models.

why doesn't anyone make nice, well-fitted clothes for pudgy girls who don't want to wear tents, Big Bold Patterns, or ferociously bright colors?

man, this post depressed me. ugly-ass clothes and thin women masquerading as "plus" size 6-8s. Put my pajama-clad size 16 self out in the pasture (or send me to the glue factory). it's all over, if unravelled knitting are passing for clothes, and skinny women are passing for plump.

Linda from Chicago

Like many others here, I am wondering what universe this designer lives in if he thinks he's showing plus-sized clothes. There are about three models who are larger than the usual sticks that wear clothing down runways.

In reality, the average American woman is size 14. Why is high fashion clothing not made for this group? Well, because humans always have to make a point about what it takes to be "better" in their society. In some cultures, having extra flesh shows you are upper class (because you have enough to eat). In our culture, being stick thin is the epitome of beauty because most of us can't be that thin without constant dieting, surgery, or extensive exercise. The wealthy, who are the "better" in today's world, can more easily afford all three. The poor are eating macaroni for dinner and trudging up three flights of stairs for exercise. I won't even go into health care . . .

i don't really care about all the model drama crap because these clothes are too gorgeous. seriously.
one of the best shows this season in my opinion.
the clothes, the clothes. that is what this should really be about. sure the styling isn't the best, but this work is fantastic. and i would wear a ton of this stuff. probably not as-is... but incorporated into an outfit, for sure.

Actually, I think they would all look hot, IF they SMILED. I think it's the air of slump-shouldered depression that makes you perceive these outfits as unflattering.

While I agree that the plus-sized models don't look like the average American size 12 or 14, if you read the BBC article (linked to earlier in the comments but here it is again), they were all size 12 or 14, not size 6 or 8. A 5'9" or taller size 14 looks nothing like a 5'2" size 14 (like me).

And yeah, I'd just like to echo the question of why a designer who supposedly "wanted women to know they don't have to be a size zero to wear a Mark Fast dress" would put almost all of the plus-sized models in some of the most unflattering, underwear-revealing looks???

I love that he approached plus size women, but he made them all look tired, half dead, and the clothes were really unflattering. A lot of these garments tend to accentuate all the rolls and lumps that every woman tries to hide. Plus too much skin. Should have stuck to the skinny models if he wanted to pull off this look.

This comment has been removed by the author.

"What EXACTLY is the problem with the way these 3 women look in the clothes?"

They're not up to snuff with contemporary standards of beauty, to state the obvious. Fat may have been considered beautiful once, it may even be considered beautiful again someday, but it's not now. Why? Perhaps because we enshrine the exceptional. In an environment where it's easy to be fleshy, lean becomes the novelty.

The familiar and average are seldom idealized, no matter how much you rail against the "unfairness" of it all. Such is fashion.

And, let's stop playing the martyrs just because our particular body types aren't considered the contemporary feminine ideal. To hear the griping, you'd think that fat girls were being condemned to chain gangs. Not the ideal. Get over it.

(I'm currently pretty dumpy, so I can write "fat girls" with complete immunity from censor-- don't even try.)

To all of you plus sized ladies (like myself), check out Gayla Bentley if you want to see some beautiful fashion for the larger woman.

This comment has been removed by the author.

So I'm bigger than all of these girls, but I don't shop in the plus sized department, the clothes are too big now.What planet are they plus sized? I don't understand this at all. I lost weight and like how I look and wear stuff that makes me look mighty fine. Mighty fine. I'm totally seriously confused by this guy's thinking. It's weird.

Hi. I truly believe that the 'real woman' category is one that is waiting to yield dollar signs. Every woman wants to see herself in fashion ... the size 10, even 12is sooo universal. And dress-able!!! These gauzy, mesh-y clothes aren't even pretty for the skinnies. The world Wants, Needs ... and is prepared to Love(!) clothes for real People.

The models don't look very cheery. And the clothes are awful. I dunno, I really don't like this collection at all. Maybe a couple looks were good. The rest should be burned.

tawdry at any size

I'm a fatty and I LOVE THESE CLOTHES, I would wear them in a heartbeat if I were to win the lottery, and please trust that I would look FANTASTIC in them. Of course I wouldn't wear a see-through macrame dress with nothing on under it to work or whatever, but that is how I prefer my clothes to fit, because I don't see any need to hide myself in a tent. Thankyouverymuch.


I dont think these clothes look good on anyone, no matter their size.

I do applaud seeing women on the runway that look like me in shape but I would never have that sour pus face on :)

OMG I just watched the video. How awefull. None of those woman could walk. They were just shlumping down the runway. That poor "plus sized" model in the black dress just looks terrible. Why did they put her in that? Some of those dresses are so short I think their vaginas are going to peek out and say hello.

Is this a professional show?

Personally I think the biggest problem is the idea that having any visible body fat at all qualifies as 'too fat' in some people's eyes. A healthy person has a certain amount of body fat. The fat is there for a reason (actually a number of reasons). Starving yourself to get rid of all signs of fat is bad for you.

The more bones you see, the less likely it is someone has a healthy amount of body fat. Yet even women who are naturally lean and down in the single-digit sizes but don't have their bones visible in detail are considered 'large' by some people simply because they've been conditioned to think that any fat at all, no matter how little, is a lot. And because of that, people who are perfectly healthy and fit starve themselve.

And that is why getting larger models on the runway is a good idea. Because models and actresses and other figures in the media are what we hold up as the standard of beauty to aspire to. More variance means more acceptance, and more self-acceptance.

Ugly, poorly fitted, unflattering, badly styled -- in short, the very definition of a HOT MESS.

You call these larger women? Maybe in terms of the average model, but honeys, you need to get out more. I know of many girls who would be envious of any of these models' bodies.

For the normal sized women who are saying they wouldn't be caught dead in these clothes... don't worry, I'm a size 2 and I wouldn't wear a single thing in this collection either. It's not your bodies, these are ugly, unflattering, skanky clothes on everyone.

So yay for using more realistic models. Nay that their time to shine was this hoochie fest.

Yes, I call these larger women. And there are several that are not size 8. They are just tall, big boned girls, so, as many have mentioned, they look different than shorter women. The average woman in the US, I believe, is about 5'4", 145 lbs., and size 14--or something like that. Of course they are going to look bigger than a 6' tall woman who wears the same size.

Sizes are also much larger than they used to be. Women who wear a size 8 now are much larger than women who wore an 8 in 1960. I have clothes from size 4-10 in my wardrobe and they all fit. Sizes are highly subjective nowadays.

I think the models in #19, 20 and 39 look as bad as any, and I don't believe that they are "plussies."

I also don't believe that larger women are not "up to snuff" with current standards of beauty. There are quite a few celebrities who are considered beautiful who are not stick-thin. And swimsuit models are much curvier than runway models.

Talk about craziness: what about that whole Ralph Lauren controversy? Where they whittled about 4" off of the model's waist and now they have fired her for "not fitting into the clothes."

Uh...I only see ONE model that is not super-skinny. Models with an "s"? does this mean my body image is healthy or unhealthy, that I don't even see the other "plus sized" gals on the runway except the one (who looks like me, and about as unhappy to have her size-8 bottom squashed into too-small underwear as I would be in her shoes).

One thing no one's noticed/mentioned, the article is from the BBC and the show was I think in London? UK sizes are different than American sizes. For anyone pointing out that size 12-14 models were used, if that's UK sized they're more like 8-10. I don't know if that's the case (seems more likely) but I thought I'd put that out there.

"Sizes are also much larger than they used to be."

I just learned this the other day. I'm taking a beginner sewing class and the teacher was explaing how pattern sizes differ from store sizes. I usually wear a 14 or 16; according to the pattern I bought, I'm a size 22. There's so much fluctuation that the term "plus-size" is kind of arbitrary.

Here's an idea: just use girls who look good in your clothes. Don't stuff a girl into a dress that doesn't fit just to be proud of yourself for using "bigger" girls, and don't hang a sternum-baring top on a flat-chested girl with visible ribs just because she's an "industry standard" size 0. Beauty comes in many shapes and sizes. It's trite, but it's true.

That said, lighten up - it's just fashion!

Minneapolis Mike said...

You call these larger women? Maybe in terms of the average model, but honeys, you need to get out more. I know of many girls who would be envious of any of these models' bodies.

OBVIOUSLY, we're talking about larger in terms of the average model.

I see a lot of Judy Noodles in these looks. The macrame is good too. That's the good part. The minis are so drab that they're forgettable.

Rant about larger models (and all models for that matter): Posture counts! I could practically see kyphosis creeping on that first model. Very, very unattractive.

Becca Go said, "I'm taking a beginner sewing class and the teacher was explaing how pattern sizes differ from store sizes. I usually wear a 14 or 16; according to the pattern I bought, I'm a size 22."

I took sewing almost 30 years ago, and pattern sizes varied just as much back then too. I was a size 8 in the real world, but had to buy a size 14 pattern. See! They're still 6 sizes off.

First I applaud MyFawny's 7:58pm post.

Secondly - Lisa ...
(I'm currently pretty dumpy, so I can write "fat girls" with complete immunity from censor-- don't even try.)

Um - no you are not immune. Kind of like - I'm "currently" quite tan so I have immunity on race issues. You wrote insulting BS and tell the people who've actually suffered from the BS to just "get over it" - gag.

Having proclamations from skinny people that big or fat woman don't REALLY get discriminated against is total bull. Being big, like race, is not something that you can hide. The callousness exhibited in the comments is VERY mild to what else happens. But I am not going there. I am just calling out the ridiculous bs - and calling it what it is.

I totally forgot that I looked at this collection ages ago. Horrible, and not for the models, they're gorgeous and diverse but the clothes look like glorified stripper wear. I honestly think I saw some of them in the halloween display at the Sex Cité lol

Looked at his previous collections and they were just as awful with all skinny models. How and why is he relevant???

Yeah, I recommend not paying much attention to size. Cut versus your body type can also change what size you need to get, let alone the inconsistency between manufacturers. I've got large hips and no amount of dieting or starving myself is going to change that because the bones are large (to be a single-digit size, I think I'd have to actually have bones removed), so depending on cut my pants size can vary a lot. My tops are nearly always in smaller sizes than pants and skirts. I just try stuff on until I find something that fits right.

I love that beige and lemon dress. Had I the resources to purchase it for my very own, I would wear it know what, never mind. Only a few of these actually look good on the body, and that includes both plus-sized and non plus-sized models.

Also, who cares if the models have chronic deadface? Smiling makes wrinkles and runway is about the clothes. Duh.

They all look like they're doing the walk of shame in what's left of their clothing after a wild night out where they were either (a) attacked by frat boys, (b) fell into the bushes, (c) got so drunk they couldn't properly pull their clothes back on.

Bras. They need bras. When one has real boobies, one needs a bra. Just looking at the "real woman" models makes my chest and upper back ache so distractingly, I can't really pay attention to the sweatery things they're wearing.

Yeah... I don't think it's an accident that all of the larger models are wearing looks of abject misery. Those designs are not doing anything for them. I guess I applaud the idea of it much more than the execution. Why not design something that would actually FLATTER a body that's not a size 0? I guess that's too difficult.

Frankly, even the traditional models look unhappy.

"Why can't we see a collection modeled by larger women wearing clothes that actually flatter them?"

Because designers make their clothes for stick figures, not people.

Beyond that, I think the larger models would have looked MUCH better if they'd had underwear that fit them...not 10 sizes too small. Panties should not give you muffin top (or muffin bottom or in-between elastic band bulge.)

There are a couple of cute outfits, but I can't see the majority on women of any size.

gah, the nipples in this thing is unremarkable.

To be fair, I'm not sure half of those looks particularly flatter the normal models, either, and I personally don't know any size <6 ppl who would wear these clothes. I think it's just a disjunction of ideals and aesthetic—it's a nice gesture, assuming it was made in good faith, but it's just not what he's into.

... why isn't the first model wearing spanx, anyway?

10/14/09 4:05 PM

actually a stylist quit over it or something like that and the looks were criticized because the larger models were not wearing the optimal foundation garments.

So do you know if the stylist quit because s/he didn't want to work with plus-size models or because the clothes made them look bad and their underwear wasn't helping the issue?

I kind of feel like pointing out that targeting the average-size American woman might be a smart move for PR and business, but for the most part Americans are pretty unhealthy and obesity/overweightness is a much much much much much bigger problem than anorexia, so there's not really a moral high ground there. (OK, it's probably much less healthy to be a 6ft size 0 woman than a 5'4" size 0, but you know... short girls don't get a break either way. Is anyone standing up for the height-challenged here? No? Well then.)

One dress (the gray one on a "larger" model) flattered her but models without expression don't fill the clothes with life - so most of these are fug.

I'm sick of cutouts in clothing.


The taupe loose-fitting jersey-like dress with the ruffled skirt is cool, the rest is skintight hoochie-wear. Not flattering.

Linda from Chicago

After going off on the plus-size issue, I looked at these designs again and think that many would look good over interestingly colored body-suits. Or tight pants and leotard tops. They just don't look like finished garments on their own. There's such a thing as too much skin unless you're at the beach.

Beth Ditto would wear any of these in a second, without blinking and not even the cattiest, bitchiest queen in the world could convince her she looked anything other than fantastic.

(And she'd be right.)

While it's encouraging that Mark Fast used 'plus size' models (likely a size six, which is hardly plus size), I agree that he should have put them in clothes that flattered their figures. Any woman can tell you that making yourself look like a sausage casing, no matter what size you are, is unflattering.

It seems this designer takes inspiration from the female form, as evidenced by his skin tight clothing.The larger female silhouette is a natural progression of his aesthetic.
Some of these comments speak more to the self esteem of the viewer then the "flaws" of the models. Seeing someone who represents "yourself" objectified the way the fashion industry objectifies women is difficult. Take yourself out of it and realize that these models (all of them) are not in a mall or at work they are displaying the a runway collection. They are displaying an aesthetic. It is all fantasy.
Fantastic collection!

Anonymous-- I wrote that thin is the contemporary standard of beauty.

You called that "insulting BS", which would imply that you disagree-- thin ISN'T embraced as the modern ideal(?)-- that seems to contradict the discrimination you allude to.

I've been fat, and have suffered the usual idle comments from vicious teenage boys. To acknowledge that thin is the current ideal is not to approve of rude harassment.

I've also been thin. In my late teens I lost the excess weight through a focused decision to stop eating as a form of amusement, and to start exercising-- I discovered that I enjoyed biking and have been an avid bicyclist for most of my life since. I often forced myself to exercise even when I didn't especially feel like it because I recognized that the payoff would be the feeling of well-being that fitness provides.

I know you probably don't want to hear this (in fact, I'm sure you don't), but being thin is far more enjoyable than being fat. Not merely because it saves you from rude cracks. Walking is easier, bending is easier, everything is easier. The body functions better when limbs don't smack together because of excess padding. Your body becomes a useful functioning thing, instead of extra baggage to drag around.

If you're happy being big, carry on.

But, don't fault others for their preference for fit, trim bodies-- the preference may not be quite as arbitrary and irrational as you'd like to think.

The models look miserable, the "large" models especially so. And I don't blame them. It doesn't look like the designer considered their bodies at all before squeezing them into those garments. Not flattering.

~ Ri

The Hell??????
Girl, it's not about you.

I think the clothes are beautiful. Couldn't care less about the models -- runway models always look strange.

I hate the way women's bodies are always such a big dramatic issue. If the models are skinny, people complain. If they aren't skinny, people complain. I'm fat, but I don't care about other women's bodies. I only care about the clothes and the artistry that goes into them.

i saw the collection on mark's website, and really liked it. having seen these close ups, im a bit disappointed. i didnt realize how exposed everyone was (holy nipples batman!) with the exception of one. the larger model wearing the black dress towards the end looked like her breasts would bounce out at any moment. this collection may have kept average sized women in mind, but mark didnt think about their breasts :(

PAINFUL. FULL OF PAIN. The plus-size models looks TERRIBLE.

Wow, this is a definite "how not to dress larger women." Couldn't he have at least made something that doesn't cling around the hips and show the models' white underpants?

There is not one single thing I like about this collection. Truly one of the ugliest I've ever seen.

Those. Are. The. Most. TERRIFYING. Models. I. Have. Ever. Witnessed. scary.

I can't even applaud him for using "plus" sized models because this is just an embarrassment to them. Although I am not plus sized I feel a little offended that he would even use them in this way. They look dead because they feel like school girls who's clothes were switched in the locker room for these monstrosities so all the kids in school can laugh as they walk the halls. Just my opinion.

BALMAIN for women

Blog Archive

Search This Blog


Project Runway