Fashion designer Christian Siriano has garnered quite the reputation for his willingness to be inclusive with his line and in an interview with supermodel and new mom Ashley Graham, his passion for dressing people of all shapes and sizes shone through.
On Tuesday’s episode of Graham’s podcast Pretty Big Deal, Siriano got candid about the fashion industry’s unwillingness to budge when it comes to creating styles that fit all. When the supermodel asked why it’s been so hard for designers to create clothes in every size, the Project Runway host did not hold back.
“It’s definitely harder, it’s not the easiest job,” Siriano answered. “And that’s really because the process is longer. It’s like, you have to fit your clothes on multiple sizes before you actually produce them, which a lot of brands just don’t want to do it because they don’t want to take the time or the money and the resources. So, yeah, that’s it! But it’s doable. We do it. And I have a small team. So, it’s not that hard.”
The designer even revealed that he has flown plus-sized models to Europe to participate in his shows. He went on to explain to Graham that he decided to go all-in on size inclusivity after being told certain women should not wear his gowns.
“They kept saying my clothes were for models,” Siriano remembered. “...I was like, ‘Well, that’s not true. You’re annoying.’ So I was like, ‘Well I’m going to show you that like these are my new models and they are like curvy and cool.’”
Siriano had also made headlines in 2016 when he was the only designer willing to dress actress and comedian Leslie Jones for the premiere of Ghostbusters. He has also dressed countless other black stars including Jennifer Hudson, Billy Porter and Uzo Aduba, which according to the Maryland native, came naturally to him.
“Growing up in Baltimore city...where I was the minority because I went to school with mostly black kids, so it was just normal to me,” Siriano remembered. “I don’t know, it’s like cultures collide and I think that’s what kind of beautiful like about our world.”
With there being a sense of urgency around inclusion in the fashion industry, Graham asked Siriano how the designer can keep up.
“I think you have to like be very very optimistic and open-minded about every single thing, every project, what will lead to something else? Because it didn’t use to be that way, it used to be like, ‘Oh, you could never do this.’ But now it’s not the case anymore,” he said.
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