a letter to the editor

dear editor-in-chief of vogue italia, ms. franca sozzani - 


i'm writing in regards to your recent tweet: "After having seen most of the men's shows I can tell you guys: you have to be very slim, muscles are not fashionable any longer."  


i don't mean to be rude or disrespectful as vogue italia is among my favorite magazines,  however, i don't understand why or how a person in your position could make a statement like this.


good fashion is about clothing, accessories, and style.  body types shouldn't be considered more or less fashionable because people can't help their body type. statements like this do nothing for empowering people to embrace fashion, but further the stereotype that fashion is a bitchy industry promoting vapid and unhealthy ideals. it's very difficult to defend the industry on the body image issue when prominent figures, such as yourself, say and do things which further such a silly and misguided stereotype.


i also must point out the inaccuracy of your statement.  while i did not have the pleasure of attending the men's shows, i do look at magazine ads and editorials.  i'm assuming the pages of vogue italia still have some sway in the "what's fashionable" department?  have you not seen the very muscular cristiano ronaldo in the armani ads?  are you trying to say that your friend, mr. armani, one of the world's most prominent and creative fashion talents, got it so wrong? are you saying cristiano ronaldo should atrophy his muscles (much to the dismay of countless women across the globe) so his body can be back in vogue?  have i succeeded yet in illustrating the absurdity of calling one body type less fashionable than another? 


photo from style.it


typically, runway models have never been very muscular. muscles can limit a model's ability to wear a variety of clothing shapes and styles, thus limiting their career.  models keeping their bodies versatile for their jobs is not a statement of which body types are in fashion.  if it was, that would create a very narrow view of beauty throughout history, causing fashion to become stagnant instead of evolving with the changing times.  


right now, the entire world is trending towards a broader view of what's considered beautiful and fashionable. the proof is in the pages of fashion magazines where we're starting to see more full figured women and men both muscular and less so, making the point that anyone, of any body type, can still be fashion forward, and have their unique personal style - because these things are independent of size or muscle mass.  right now, the thing that's in fashion is a more enlightened way of thinking about body image.  which i'm sorry to say makes your tweet pretty passé. 


i understand that tweeting something in passing is not always meant to be the most profound statement of your feelings on a subject.  the reason i chose to write about this though, is because while twitter may seem like a simple, silly little thing, people find those tweets and read them around the world.  a person in your standing has an opinion that influences millions of other people. and with great power, comes great responsibility.  i hope you will remember that.  


thank you,
kristy

16 comments:

  1. I agree Kristy, you made some excellent points in this post! Also liked that you quoted from Spiderman :D

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  2. A-MEN! Excellent post Kristy! You make so many good points. And really, what the world does not need is more men who are not in touch with their masculine side. No muscles? Pffffft. Insane, honey! I don't want to live in that world!

    ♥ V

    http://www.gritandglamour.com

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  3. amazingly true [:
    thank you for your exposure of the enlightening truth. sometimes even the most powerful people have to be kept in check by those whose power is reserved in the influence of their opinions.

    i admire your spark.

    <3, dennica pearl
    eyesofapearl.blogspot.com

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  4. i can't beleive that a certain body type can be considered "in" or "out"! and anyway what on earth is wrong with muschles? i like them, and most women i know like them! htey are men for goodness sake! excellent points! great post!

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  5. thank you for the wonderful comments guys. i love hearing peoples' perspectives on this issue because it's currently such a big one in the fashion industry. i was really shocked when i heard about her tweet, and though i wouldn't classify it as the savviest PR move on my part to post in response to her, i couldn't really help it. the positive feedback makes it all worth it though, so i mean it most sincerely when i say that i truly appreciate your words.

    @genevieveink - i'm ecstatic that you recognized the spiderman quote. that is one of my favorite quotes in anything ever because it's just so wise and true. i use it every chance i get. =P

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  6. Great letter! It's hard to believe that someone in her position would post something like that. Either that or she's very bold and doesn't care what others think. Who knows. Either way, her comment is very old fashioned and I like the fact the fashion industry is starting to change it's perspective on the human body. BTW, How can you say 'no' to muscles? Really? Is her type the whiny emo kid? Because, personally, a fit muscular body is beautiful. =)

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  7. Just came across your blog today and I'm glad I did! This post is so true! We need more real people in the fashion world.
    Love the post below aswell - the pictures look great.

    Your new follower
    17mosslane.blogspot.com

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  8. to reiterate what's been said above, i'm also glad to see people like you standing up not only for what you believe in, but for people in general. as you said, major fashion designers essentially set the standards for their public to follow; they need to make positive statements and perpetuate healthy body images. it's important (with anything) that if we don't agree with something, we speak up. thanks for doing that!

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  9. well, i'm alright with fashion designers using slender models. i have nothing against that. i don't think that the models used in the men's shows looked underweight or unhealthy. but i have a problem with prominent media people, such as the editor of vogue italia, taking that to be some sort of statement as to a body type being in or out of fashion. i think that's an unhealthy mentality. but so long as a model isn't unhealthily overweight, i don't think there's anything wrong with using them just because they tend to be more slender than the rest of the population. if i was putting on a runway show, i too would use slender models.

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  10. Ugh Iwhat a ridiculous statement and way to go to promote "manorexia"!!

    Again i totally agree that picking on body type is an extremely stupid thing coming from the media and brands - why alienate a potential market segment with such stupid comments? People dont choose their body types but they will choose brands that represent them.

    And saying that "muscles are not fashionable any longer" is like saying "small boobs arent fashionable any longer"...So shall everyone get seasonal cosmetic surgery to fit "trends"?! Lame!

    Well said miss!!

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  11. I hate when people try to make a certain body type fashionable. For me style is what you do with what you have. It should never be about changing your body but about embracing it and finding a style of your own and a look that works for you. And just for the record...muscles will always be in style ;) Excellent post xx

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  12. I totally agree with you... Above all, I can't understand why she could have said something like that: hasn't she seen Dolce&Gabbana and Giorgio Armani runways, for example? All models were the same, muscled bodies of every season!

    http://www.foolandcool.blogspot.com

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  13. That statement is just crazy....anyway most men wont go changing their body types because Vogue told them to do so. Most men could care less and the men that do see right through it. I agree with you 100% on this!

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  14. You make a great point in this letter... did you send it to vogue italy? you should!
    Following you via bloglovin' and google friend connect!
    adore your blog!
    xoxo

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  15. this was actually the first post i landed on--vixel from sparkleandglitter linked it.

    thinking about muscley vs. skinny male models makes me curious, actually, to hear more from you about something you said in the *other* post: "it's not an insult, it's a fact - slender models give the greatest amount of flexibility in the clothing shapes they can wear." can you...break that down a bit?

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