Hollywood has finally begun to embrace curves again.
As we recently told you, curvier models are gaining major traction as of late, appearing everywhere from Fashion Week runways to the pages of Sports Illustrated.
But we have a feeling it’s not a passing trend.
Case in point: Sophie Tweed Simmons.
You probably know her best as the daughter of legendary rocker Gene Simmons and one of Canada’s most legendary Playboy Playmates, Shannon Tweed, thanks to their reality show, Gene Simmons: Family Jewels. But the 22-year-old is quickly making a name for herself in her own right as a fashion designer and model with an important message to share:
You don’t need to be a size 4 or under to be sexy (even in Hollywood).
Late last year, Tweed Simmons launched a collaboration with The Style Club – the most recent of which was a set of holiday dresses – which was a pretty major success. Her spring/summer collection is due out in the coming weeks.
Tweed Simmons clothing collection is designed to look good on real women (as in, larger than a size 4), as opposed to hanging well on a clothes hanger.
Each piece pays homage to an influential woman who embodies female empowerment and strength. Appropriately, clothing pieces have names like Nancy Reagan, Hillary Clinton, Michelle Obama, Oprah Winfrey, Sheryl Sandberg, Rosa Parks, Malala Yousafzai, Arianna Huffington, Marilyn Monroe, Jane Austen, Gwen Stefani, and Emily Dickinson – just to name a few.
Continuing with the “real” theme, the Tweed Simmons’ pieces are available at affordable prices.
We caught up with Tweed Simmons to chat more about it:
Can you tell us about your recent collections?
“The clothing collection launched in October of last year. So far, it’s been really successful,” says Tweed Simmons. “We’ve done two capsule collections, and we’re coming up on our third. Both collections have sold out within a week. I just really love their business model to fashion. It’s pretty much four weeks from sketch to being on the shelves. So it’s instant gratification for me.”
What mentality do you notice in fellow young females when it comes to body image?
“I think body image really depends on your city, and on your upbringing,” says Tweed Simmons. “You can go to Los Angeles or New York, or any of these large metropolitan cities and still see girls dieting really hard and working out in excess, but in smaller towns, where I see more family values being at the forefront, you don’t see as much of that. It’s because those girls really have a support system behind them and people to look up to. But it’s really all about your upbringing, and I would say that the media doesn’t really help in that respect.
How has living in the public eye affected your thoughts on body image?
“I think that growing up in the spotlight for any kid comes with pressure always, and people are always going to comment about you. What you have to realize is that you signed up to be a public figure; you’re up for debate and commentary. But you can’t let it bug you, because it’s part of your job,” says Tweed Simmons.
Do you think social media helps or hinders body image issues?
“Social media has helped some girls really express themselves,” says Tweed Simmons. “The ones who were confident are now even more confident. But, it really hinders those who didn’t realize they would become public figures the minute they decided to have a public profile.”
“I think that there’s a lot of negative commentary coming from all over the world for these young girls on social media and they don’t know how to take it. They weren’t trained to take it. They don’t have an awesome family background like I do, of people who are supportive and helpful. They don’t have a PR team to help and are on their own. That can be really tough on young girls,” says Tweed Simmons.
Do you think the “plus-sized” model trend is here to stay?
“I know most of those girls personally. Denise Bidot was the first plus-sized model to walk in Fashion Week and Robyn Lawley is this amazing, super tall Australian,” says Tweed Simmons. “In real-life, they’re not plus-sized. I stand next to them and we’re the same size. I don’t understand why people use the term ‘plus’ because they’re very fit girls. I think that just because their not high fashion size, that the industry labels them plus-sized.”
“They definitely feel like there’s been a shift and that there is acceptance, but there’s more acceptance to their type of ‘plus-sized’ model, which isn’t actually a plus-size,” says Tweed Simmons. “Plus-size really starts at size 14, and these girls are maybe a 10 or a 12. I hate those labels, but I feel like the media hasn’t accepted that they shouldn’t use those labels.”
What to you is notable?
“Women who build up and empower other women instead of trying to bring them down.”
All images from: Sophie Tweed Facebook Page