12 July 2011

bringing sexy back

Italian Vogue, you make me happy.

Their cover editorial this month is va-va-voom at its finest. The racy content of it pages might shock the average American, but the ample-figured models managed to give the ultra-jaded fashion crowd a little start as well.

Well salute to that! I think sex in the media can be tasteful and non-exploitative if done right, but it's baffling that most models fit into a very narrow definition of what's sexy. Don't get me wrong - I think that tall, skinny models are good in fashion shoots that evoke, like, swans or robots. But why do we use these same models for what I think of as Bombshell photos? Photos that are meant to call to mind old Hollywood glamour, or a sexy boudoir. There's nothing sexy about lingerie when it looks like it's on an abnormally tall 12-year old boy.

It seems the only place for other body types is in ad campaigns featuring "real women" (a.k.a. frumps). Or if they're not in some homage to homeliness, they're covered in tattoos. A little ink is fine, but the implication is that anything over a size 2 is "alternative." Seriously - I want to see a curvy woman, but I want to see her in couture!

My favorite thing about this editorial is that it genuinely appears to be about the clothes and the sexiness of the women wearing them - not about their size. Here are a couple of the tamer shots...

Aren't they hot? And not in a "that woman is hot for her size" way, but in a "that woman is hot" way.

Sadly, I doubt that this will be the start of a new era in fashion. This same magazine did an all black issue before, but I haven't noticed any surge in black models. Giving non-white models or curvy models their one month of glory doesn't exactly bang a huge dent in the status quo. But hopefully a handful of arbiters will appreciate the effort as much as I do, and get things moving in the right direction.

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