By Abbie Hurwitz
On Nov. 5, 24 year-old Ashley Nell Tipton became the first plus-sized designer to win with a plus-sized collection onProject Runway's 14 seasons. Tipton’s victory holds hope for change in both the show and the fashion industry overall
Fashion has always been marketed toward an ideal body type. Clothes always seem to be designed with the “perfect” body in mind, even if “perfect” is not realistic. Companies such as Brandy Melville only sell clothes ranging from sizes 00 to 2, making it is easy to see which body types fashion is gearing itself toward, and it certainly isn’t plus-sized. In a country where 20 million women suffer from eating disorders, according to nationaleatingdisorders.org, it is unsafe and unethical to promote the idea that beautiful clothes are only meant for people of a certain size.
From the first episode, Tipton challenged the norms of plus-sized fashion. Early on Tipton voiced her discontent with the overuse of dull colors such as black within the plus-sized fashion industry, challenging this by constantly utilizing bright colors and patterns.
In her final line, she took advantage of a bold color palette, as well as pulled in inspiration from 1950s Mexico City in order to create a bright and floral collection that brought the stage to life. Her collection displayed beautiful models of different sizes, all wearing stunning clothing.
Tipton demonstrates to America that there are opportunities in fashion for all sizes. Her colorful designs give creative ideas to plus-sized designers, so everyone has a variety of things that they can wear. Hopefully her victory will be the push that the fashion industry needs, in order to start making clothes more accessible for all.