Runways worldwide have finally become more diverse, with designers showcasing collections on models of all shapes, sizes, genders, and ages. The stereotypical notion of a size zero woman has to some extent changed with the influx of relatable social media influencers, and with brands trying to connect with the real individuals who buy their products. Over the last few years, the Azafashions.com team has worked with designers to extend size sets to 6XL, making it the country’s first luxury retailer to have a dedicated plus size page with over 13,000 styles. We’re spotlighting two designer labels that stand out in their contribution to encouraging body positivity and making Indian fashion more inclusive.
1. You have shot numerous campaigns with real women. Tell us about the idea behind this.
The fact that these are real women with real stories, builds a strong subliminal connection with the audience. It’s easier for the audience to connect with real women rather than size-zero models. For my recent shoot for destination wedding wear, which is suitable for women of all sizes, age, mannerisms, we worked with women who could do justice to the outfits. The storytelling for my campaign is inspired by their lives & traits.
2. How do you see the market for plus size fashion in India?
As we all know the market for plus size in India is growing in leaps and bounds. People are slowly but gradually coming to terms with their body and accepting themselves. Size should not matter, the shape should not matter, what people think about you definitely should not matter. All that should matter is that you love yourself. We at House of Masaba, work closely with the anatomy and contours, & give variety in sizing the utmost importance. My garments are always a balancing act of presenting marketable creations while staying true to our design ethos.
3. How can the industry work towards making fashion more inclusive?
Since the past few years, doors have opened for more people of color, plus-size women, transgender women, etc. At House of Masaba, our collection talks about diversity in more nuanced ways. We make it more evident by doing photoshoots with real women.
4. Three style tips for curvy women.
Women out there find it daunting to dress up as per their body type, but if they figure out how to dress up they would probably love it! They should pick up on solid hues, well-fitted clothes, etc. V-necks can be much more flattering than round & high necks. Wear clothes that accentuate the areas of your body that you love and that make you feel good.
1. Tell us about the inspiration behind your label. Who do you design for?
Contrary to belief, curvy women like clothes that show their shape, and most of them are confident in their own skin to wear sexier styles. We design for women who believe that "it is not about what size you wear, it is about how you wear your size." She has her own individual style, and a personality that exudes confidence and a free spirit.
2. How is the Indian Fashion industry evolving with respect to plus size fashion? Do you see a change?
The industry is slowly adapting to the change of sizes which cater to real women body types. Most current labels in retail stores, do not provide sizes for customers to physically try the outfit. A size Large is also a rarity. From pret labels to couture, there is no availability of sizes. Yes of course customization is an option, but it is difficult for everyone to visualize the outfit on themselves without trying it. The buyers are understanding now that, offering ready to wear sizes in larger sizes, increases the sales, as well as customer loyalty. Having said that, some of the retailers still prefer to hang smaller sizes on the racks since the hanger appeal is better.
3. Your Lakme Fashion Week show celebrates real women. How do you select who walks for you?
For our campaign shoot, or the runway shows, we work with women who are confident, have an inherent personal style, which enhances our designs. We usually collaborate with varied age groups, sizes, body shapes and women who aren't afraid to be themselves.