In Milan, plus-size label Elena Miro goes it alone, in style

It was standing room only Wednesday at plus-size fashion designer Elena Miro's show after her house was excluded from the official programme of Milan Fashion Week.

The designer, whose real name is Elena Miroglio, said she was "still wondering" why the organisers terminated a five-year-old tradition of scheduling her show as the Fashion Week opener.

Mario Boselli, head of the National Chamber of Italian Fashion, justified the move by saying: "Some labels just weren't in line with what ready-to-wear week should be. We wanted to champion the values of creativity to reaffirm Milan's role in the world."

Miroglio fought back Wednesday with an independent show harking to the 1950s "when the beauty of women, the round shapes and soft bodies" were de rigueur, she told AFP backstage before the show.

Her voluptuous models took to the catwalk flaunting their full figures, ample breasts and thighs, as well as their coquettish smiles, against the backdrop of a romantic black-and-white cafe scene decorated with real flowers.

"Every kind of woman should be represented on the catwalk," Miroglio said. "This kind of soft woman likes to dress like everyone else."

Her collection for spring/summer 2011, rich in solid light greys, beiges and whites - normally shunned by heavier women - was one of unabashed femininity, "positive and sunny," in Miroglio's words.

Miroglio, who herself is diminutive and quite thin, recognises that designing for larger women is more challenging than for the more linear, but said that through her 25 years of experience she had developed the "knowhow about proportions and shapes."

As hairdressers and makeup artists prepared the models backstage, they could help themselves to sugary pastries weighing down a table in the back.

Australian model Penelope Benson, 23, who carries 76 kilos (167 pounds) on her frame of five foot ten (1.78 metres), said fashion should get with the times and was making a mistake by ignoring larger women.

"Real women are the ones with the money," she mused, dismissing styles designed for the thin, saying: "We can't relate to it."

A move towards more generously sized models has gained momentum since the death from anorexia in 2006 of Brazilian model Ana Carolina Reston, which shocked the fashion world.

Spain and Italy banned models below a certain body mass index after her death, while Britain stopped short, banning only those aged under 16 from the catwalk.

Leading fashion magazine Elle, in a reflection of the expanding market for women who defy the super-slender ideals of the catwalk, put out a special issue in March featuring larger than normal models - and sales jumped.

Tegan Stum, a 19-year-old model from Texas, called the fashion world's standard thin model "a bit unhealthy."

Stum, who also models for plus size labels Evans and Simply Be, said she had decided to accept her shape because she had never succeeded in losing weight. The plus side of being a plus size? "I eat whatever I want!"

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookA delicious collection of 50 meaty main courses
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Fashion

    Guru Careers: Tax Manager / Accountant

    £35 - £50k DOE: Guru Careers: A Tax Manager / Accountant (ACA / CA / CTA) is n...

    Recruitment Genius: Telemarketing Operative

    £6 - £15 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join a well e...

    Recruitment Genius: Data Scientist

    £20000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

    Recruitment Genius: Full Stack Software Developer - Javascript

    £18000 - £27000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

    Day In a Page

    Turkey-Kurdish conflict: Obama's deal with Ankara is a betrayal of Syrian Kurds and may not even weaken Isis

    US betrayal of old ally brings limited reward

    Since the accord, the Turks have only waged war on Kurds while no US bomber has used Incirlik airbase, says Patrick Cockburn
    VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but doubts linger over security

    'A gift from Egypt to the rest of the world'

    VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but is it really needed?
    Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

    Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

    Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, applauds a man who clearly has more important things on his mind
    The male menopause and intimations of mortality

    Aches, pains and an inkling of mortality

    So the male menopause is real, they say, but what would the Victorians, 'old' at 30, think of that, asks DJ Taylor
    Man Booker Prize 2015: Anna Smaill - How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?

    'How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?'

    Man Booker Prize nominee Anna Smaill on the rise of Kiwi lit
    Bettany Hughes interview: The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems

    Bettany Hughes interview

    The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems
    Art of the state: Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China

    Art of the state

    Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China
    Mildreds and Vanilla Black have given vegetarian food a makeover in new cookbooks

    Vegetarian food gets a makeover

    Long-time vegetarian Holly Williams tries to recreate some of the inventive recipes in Mildreds and Vanilla Black's new cookbooks
    The haunting of Shirley Jackson: Was the gothic author's life really as bleak as her fiction?

    The haunting of Shirley Jackson

    Was the gothic author's life really as bleak as her fiction?
    Bill Granger recipes: Heading off on holiday? Try out our chef's seaside-inspired dishes...

    Bill Granger's seaside-inspired recipes

    These dishes are so easy to make, our chef is almost embarrassed to call them recipes
    Ashes 2015: Tourists are limp, leaderless and distinctly UnAustralian

    Tourists are limp, leaderless and distinctly UnAustralian

    A woefully out-of-form Michael Clarke embodies his team's fragile Ashes campaign, says Michael Calvin
    Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza

    Andrew Grice: Inside Westminster

    Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza
    HMS Victory: The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

    The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

    Exclusive: David Keys reveals the research that finally explains why HMS Victory went down with the loss of 1,100 lives
    Survivors of the Nagasaki atomic bomb attack: Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism

    'I saw people so injured you couldn't tell if they were dead or alive'

    Nagasaki survivors on why Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism
    Jon Stewart: The voice of Democrats who felt Obama had failed to deliver on his 'Yes We Can' slogan, and the voter he tried hardest to keep onside

    The voter Obama tried hardest to keep onside

    Outgoing The Daily Show host, Jon Stewart, became the voice of Democrats who felt the President had failed to deliver on his ‘Yes We Can’ slogan. Tim Walker charts the ups and downs of their 10-year relationship on screen