“He’s no stranger to disdain and contempt for plus size women,” says blogger Marie Denee. Karl Lagerfeld has been at the brunt of a media and social networking backlash after he described Adele to Metro editors as being “a little fat.” Denee, a self-confessed plus size girl (she’s a US 16), adds, “By saying that she can sing but she’s fat minimizes who this woman is. She is so much more than just her weight.”
In Karl’s defense he did praise the British recording artist’s “divine voice”. Indeed it’s not the first time that Adele has been at the receiving end of negative weight comments. When I ask Marie what she believes to be deemed overweight, the thirty-year-old responds, “I couldn’t begin to quantify what is an unhealthy size. I don’t like saying that someone is the wrong size. You have to accept and respect yourself as a person and you’ll start embracing a full lifestyle by taking care of yourself and being active.”
This may read true for the state of your mental wellbeing but surely there comes a time when one has to accept that they may have a weight problem? Let’s be honest, obesity is on the rise, yet it has become a taboo subject amongst many people. It seems that we are chastising Lagerfeld for speaking what is arguably the truth. In many respects that’s a refreshing attribute in a world of media sound bites and spin-doctors.
However, Denee finds the negative influence his comments may have on teenagers, ”He has a profound effect on how young girls perceive themselves. What message does it send if this mega influential fashion figure minimizes Adele to her physicality? The founder of the blog Curvy Fashionista continues, “He doesn’t care and he doesn’t need to because the brand [Chanel] isn’t accessible to us [plus size girls] anyway. I kind of share the sentiment of tweeters who said, “They’re not going to support someone who thinks I’m the grossest thing ever.”
Ultimately, Karl’s comments are unlikely to shake his fashion empire but he’s unlikely to curry favor with those women who are mindful of the so-called “coat hangers” that stalk their way down the runway. But as Denee points out, “For women like me it’s a hard pill to swallow.”