Justice

People Have a Big Question About Ashley Graham's Vogue Cover

December 8th 2016

By:
Almie Rose

Ashley Graham is the first "plus-size model" (by fashion industry standards) to land a Vogue cover, appearing on the January issue of British Vogue.

Despite Graham's success in the modeling world, which has included cover shoots for Sports Illustrated and Maxim, British Vogue editor-in-chief Alexandra Shulman says that dressing Graham was a challenge. That's because, aside from one designer, fashion houses "refused" to lend their clothes to the size 16 model.

"It seems strange to me..."

In an editor's letter published on Vogue UK's website on Monday, Shulman wrote about the Graham shoot, stating that the team was "very grateful" to Coach for dressing Graham, who is not a "sample size," typically a size 0, 2 at the most.

She continues:

"They were enthusiastic about dressing a woman who is not a standard model, but sadly there were other houses that flatly refused to lend us their clothes. It seems strange to me that while the rest of the world is desperate for fashion to embrace broader definitions of physical beauty, some of our most famous fashion brands appear to be travelling [sic] in the opposite – and, in my opinion, unwise – direction."

Shulman's letter about designers refusing to dress Graham quickly spread online, with multiple media outlets picking up the story. Soon thereafter, commenters began demanding that Shulman name the designers who refused to provide outfits for the shoot. 

You can see it on HuffPost Women's Facebook page:

On USA TODAY Life's Facebook page:

And on BuzzFeed:

It's a fair question and request.

If Shulman truly believes it's "sad" and "strange" that fashion houses won't dress their cover model, then Vogue shouldn't have a problem saying who they are, instead of naming only the fashion house that complied.

Facebook users want Vogue to release the names, so they can know which designers they should support, and which do not accept "plus-size" women. 

"The question of size in the fashion industry is one that boils up continuously and furiously without ever reaching any kind of satisfactory conclusion," Shulman writes, "indeed, it’s not easy to know exactly what that would be, as there are so many different points of view." 

Women who are out of a sample size range have a difficult time finding clothes.

This is not a new revelation; Leslie Jones went on a twitter rant about how no one wanted to dress her for her "Ghostbusters" premiere due to her size (designer Christian Siriano jumped at the opportunity after her tweets).

Her "Ghostbusters" co-star, Melissa McCarthy, has voiced similar statements, telling Redbook in 2014, "Two Oscars ago, I couldn’t find anybody to do a dress for me. I asked five or six designers — very high-level ones who make lots of dresses for people — and they all said no."

It doesn't make much sense, as the average American woman is a size 16

[h/t The Washington Post]

ATTN: has reached out to British Vogue and will update when we hear back.