Friday 20 October 2017

This is what the future of fashion looks like - Ashley Graham sizzles in lingerie show at NYFW

Model Ashley Graham walks the runway during rehearsals for the Addition Elle Spring/Summer 2018 presentation at New York Fashion Week in Manhattan, New York, U.S., September 11, 2017. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly
Model Ashley Graham walks the runway during rehearsals for the Addition Elle Spring/Summer 2018 presentation at New York Fashion Week in Manhattan, New York, U.S., September 11, 2017. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly
Model Ashley Graham walks the runway during the Addition Elle Spring/Summer 2018 presentation at New York Fashion Week in Manhattan, New York, U.S., September 11, 2017. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly
Model Ashley Graham walks the runway during the Addition Elle Spring/Summer 2018 presentation at New York Fashion Week in Manhattan, New York, U.S., September 11, 2017. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly
Model Ashley Graham walks the runway for ADDITION ELLE NYFW September 2017 Runway Presentation on September 11, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for Addition Elle)
Model Ashley Graham poses prepares backstage for the ADDITION ELLE NYFW September 2017 Presentation on September 11, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Gonzalo Marroquin/Getty Images for Addition Elle)
Ashley Graham poses backstage for the ADDITION ELLE NYFW September 2017 Presentation on September 11, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Gonzalo Marroquin/Getty Images for Addition Elle)
Model Ashley Graham walks the runway for ADDITION ELLE NYFW September 2017 Runway Presentation on September 11, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for Addition Elle)
Ashley Graham poses backstage for the ADDITION ELLE NYFW September 2017 Presentation on September 11, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Gonzalo Marroquin/Getty Images for Addition Elle)
Models Mia Kang and Ashley Graham prepare backstage for the ADDITION ELLE NYFW September 2017 Presentation on September 11, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Gonzalo Marroquin/Getty Images for Addition Elle)
Ashley Graham poses backstage for the ADDITION ELLE NYFW September 2017 Presentation on September 11, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Gonzalo Marroquin/Getty Images for Addition Elle)
Model Ashley Graham walks the runway for Addition Elle on September 11, 2017 during the New York Fashion Week in New York City
Model Ashley Graham walks the runway for Addition Elle on September 11, 2017 during the New York Fashion Week in New York City
Model Ashley Graham walks the runway for Addition Elle on September 11, 2017 during the New York Fashion Week in New York City
Model Ashley Graham exits the runway during rehearsals for Addition Elle on September 11, 2017 during the New York Fashion Week in New York City
Model Ashley Graham walks the runway for Addition Elle on September 11, 2017 during the New York Fashion Week in New York City
Model Ashley Graham walks the runway for Addition Elle on September 11, 2017 during the New York Fashion Week in New York City
Model Ashley Graham walks the runway for Addition Elle on September 11, 2017 during the New York Fashion Week in New York City.
Ashley Graham arrives at the #BoF500 gala dinner during New York Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2018 at Public Hotel on September 9, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images for The Business of Fashion)
Caitlin McBride

Caitlin McBride

Plus size supermodel Ashley Graham showcased the body - and confidence - that made her a household name during New York Fashion Week.

The 27-year-old, who was the first curvy model to appear on the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue and British Vogue, is breaking barriers with her every accomplishment in her career. And she returned to the runway on Monday to model her latest collaboration with Addition Elle, the lingerie brand that put her on the mainstream map in 2015.

Ashley Graham poses backstage for the ADDITION ELLE NYFW September 2017 Presentation on September 11, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Gonzalo Marroquin/Getty Images for Addition Elle)
Ashley Graham poses backstage for the ADDITION ELLE NYFW September 2017 Presentation on September 11, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Gonzalo Marroquin/Getty Images for Addition Elle)

Graham has paired up with the brand for another range of lingerie, another string to her growing design CV - she already has a collaborative swimsuit collection with Swimsuits For All. While there have been special 'curvy' events throughout New York Fashion Week, Graham has achieved the previously thought to be impossible, featuring alongside other models (i.e. skinny ones) walking at shows for Prabal Guung and previously for Michael Kors.

Back in 2015, during her NYFW debut, she had high hopes for the fashion industry offering something more diverse and is the case most of the time: if you want something done, you have to do it yourself.

"We're finally seeing more curvy bodies at New York Fashion Week and there's no reason why people doing proper (non-lingerie) collections can't do that too," she said. "Why aren't they? I don't think fashion takes plus-size seriously yet. Nobody wants to be the first to take big steps to make change, so instead we're doing things very slowly - but at least they're trying, something is better than nothing."

She was just as inspiring this time around, saying: "I'm just fighting a fight for the women who don't want to be placed apart from other women because of the size of their hips."

Ashley Graham poses backstage for the ADDITION ELLE NYFW September 2017 Presentation on September 11, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Gonzalo Marroquin/Getty Images for Addition Elle)
Ashley Graham poses backstage for the ADDITION ELLE NYFW September 2017 Presentation on September 11, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Gonzalo Marroquin/Getty Images for Addition Elle)

Earlier this year, the body confidence advocate says she is happy to take a few hits for the greater good and for the next generation of young women who she hopes won't have to fight as hard for acceptance of their bodies.

"That really made me hyperaware that I am a big girl, and that's how people see me," she explained.

"This is the thing: I know I'm paving the way for the next generation of girls, and they're not going to have to do this. That's what I hope. I'll take the brunt work and just handle it, and then you guys can just sail right on through."

"I’m getting a seat at the table we’ve never had before, and I’m also pulling up a couple of seats around me. I know this isn’t about me. Just one girl is not going to change the world," she said.

Model Ashley Graham walks the runway for Addition Elle on September 11, 2017 during the New York Fashion Week in New York City
Model Ashley Graham walks the runway for Addition Elle on September 11, 2017 during the New York Fashion Week in New York City

The Addition Elle show featured another familiar face, Jordyn Woods, aka Kylie Jenner's best friend and Life of Kylie co-star, who has previously modelled for Boohoo.com - just don't call her plus size.

"I feel like when you categorize people and put them into a group, then it creates aloneness and segregation," she told E! Online. "There are so many models that it shouldn't really matter. I don't think there should be categories."

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