Good Old Fashioned, High Fashion Sizism

Gemma Ward, one of the most talented Supermodels in the new generation of mannequins has quit modeling. 

Gemma Ward

After these paparazzi photos of her out and about made the rounds on the internet to a chorus of “Look How Fat She Is” the doll-like waif contacted her manager and announced that she was done with the business with no immediate plans to return to the catwalk.

Gemma Ward

Gemma Ward

One blogger even went so far as to say that Ward could carve out a niche for herself with a career as a plus model.  I’m disgusted and disturbed by this. I’m happy that Gemma stood up for herself but I wish she hadn’t quit. 


To me she’s one of the best.  I wish she would have used the attention and taken a stand against sizism in the fashion industry.

Gemma Ward Australia

I understand that this is a lot for a 22-year-old to handle but something needs to be done. Girls all over the world can’t be led to believe that this is “fat” or un-pretty.

Gemma Ward

As a society we need to be more diligent about accepting all body types and not holding up a certain body type as the standard of beauty.

2009 has seen some pretty ugly attacks on Supermodels and the like.  Designer Woolfgang Joop stated that Heidi Klum was too much of a “cow” to do runway

Heidi Klum

Shoe Designer Christian Louboutian was quoted stating that Barbie’s cankles made them too fat for his shoes!


Ralph Lauren fired model Filippa Hamilton because she was “too fat” at a size 4 and her photoshopped her campaign ads to near distortion.

Ralph Lauren Model Filippa Hamilton

And formerly full-figured designer Karl Lagerfeld had this gem to offer, “No one wants to see curvy women, you’ve got fat mothers with their bags of chips sitting in front of the television and saying that thin models are ugly.”

Karl Lagerfeld

Karl Lagerfeld

My sentiments exactly...

What is the solution? What can we do to end the sizism in the fashion industry and to give women around the globe a chance at healthy societal self-esteem?

2010 has to be better.  Our future as women depends on it.



6 Responses to “Good Old Fashioned, High Fashion Sizism”

  1. Hey Mia great website.. lovin’ the blogs. You know what? People (male/female/fashion designer/whoever) who talk negative about other people’s weight are straightup not thinkin’ with the right frame of mind.. & those of us who let it get to us without firmly addressing the issue are really just as guilty. So, thank you for addressing this important issue so positively. Be blessed. 1 John 4:7-8>> “7 Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from GOD. Everyone who loves has been born of GOD and knows GOD. 8 Whoever does not love does not know GOD, because GOD IS LOVE.”

  2. Mia,

    As long as we live in a culture that feels the need to label we will have problems with sizism. What is more frightening is the power of the Internet to influence behavior. If those pictures brought her to the decision to quit modeling that means there is one more weapon for critics against people of size to use against us. Thank goodness for people like you to keep the fight going.

  3. […] after reading about a model quitting the business after size discrimination on the Internet on Mia Amber’s blog.   Going deeper into the culture I call my home tolerance and acceptance are given lip service in […]

  4. […] many, I never thought this would be possible due to head designer Karl Lagerfeld’s ridiculous remarks about plus size women late last […]

  5. vonchirole Says:

    is the problem within the modeling industry or is it with people saying that looking like a thin model is a must for everyone?

    kate moss has been thin her entire life bec. that’s the built of her body! And nobody thinks that that is normal while being fat is more accepted which i think is crazy!

    Its people that thinks they must look like a model that has a problem and not the fashion industry having thin models to sell their looks. Modeling is a profession with its own job requirements and standards! With that glamorous life an equivalent pressure is only fair.

  6. vonchirole Says:

    I honestly applause Gemma Ward for quitting! She didn’t forced herself to be thin and it didn’t put her in danger! And she’s confident with being “fat”. But I don;t like the idea of her becoming unhealthy by being fat! And yes fat is unhealthy!!!!

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