Style has no size. Beauty comes in all shapes and sizes. It is actually quite passé and more so politically incorrect to assume that only thin is in. In this time when ‘loving yourself to fullness’ and the discussions about body positivity fill the air, it is now liberating and celebratory to love ‘your curves and all your edges’. It’s not about what size you wear, it’s that you are one of a kind.
Fuller figure models are now ruling the roost making covers of magazines and redefining standards of good health and images of beauty. Supermodel Ashley Graham’s fight with Fox and ABC, for banning her Lane Bryant Lingerie commercial, on the premise of her alternative stereotype, raises the double standards which plague our beauty/fashion industry and bear testimony to the existing dichotomy with respect to beauty ideals.
Right here in Trinidad and Tobago, fashion buyer, Londa Young, herself a fuller figure woman, loves catering to “curvy ladies”, as she puts it. She points out that her consistent client is “a tad fuller-of-form, and as we wittily say, “pulchritudinous”. Operating from her fashion hub, Lon’s Fashions, she rallies a special clientele ㅡ a wide cross section of fashionable and, for the want of a better word, ‘mature’ women who leave it up to her to shop for them.
This vivacious fashion buyer prides herself on selecting one-of-a-kind trendsetting ensembles, conversation-opener coordinates and individual statement pieces which speak to the fashion tastes of our cosmopolitan diversity. On occasion, I stop by her Barataria outlet, a nerve centre ‘liming spot’, of sorts, to vibe from the spawning of a slew of fashionable exchange - health tips, holistic regimen insights, styling advice, image consultancy and on-call fittings of her recent imports, all fuelled with interactive commentary and confidence-boosting camaraderie. I swear Lonz, as she is affectionately called, is a local matriarch of a fashion parlour quite similar to those eighteenth-century Parisienne society salons, where new trends were determined and empowerment initiatives were formulated.
One such initiative, she plans to host at the Government Campus Plaza on August 4th, at 5 pm. Lonz believes that fashion and social responsibility go hand in hand. She gives new meaning to the adage “style comes in all shapes and sizes” and stresses that we should appreciate the concept of ‘one-of-a-kind beauty’, in its fullest context. She has set in motion a drive to assist Inspired Minds Institute, a school of extraordinary children with learning disabilities. She sees them as truly one-of-a-kind children.
The principal of the school, Nadira Muhammad, is thrilled that Lonz has correlated her personal concept of fitting the unique needs of her client-base with the outfitting of the special needs of this institution. In so doing, she is serving to raise awareness of the Institute’s mission as well as to raise funds to equip the school with essential infrastructure. “One size does not fit all, for style has no size,” she quips. “We all have to do our part to make a difference, to love ourselves to fullness.”
The presentation, ‘I’m Style, Irreplaceable me’ will feature plus-size models in one-of-a-kind looks, complemented by stylish ready-to-wear composites for straight-size models, all available at her uncommon boutique. Supporting fashion houses for this distinctive initiative are the sartorial Caribbean swag of DAWW Creations’ menswear by bespoke tailor, Marlon George, and the trailblazing Afro-Caribbean style of Mahogany Stuff by fashion designer, Julia Clarke, under the creative direction of yours truly.