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31.12.12

Inspirational: Models Toccara Jones and Lizzie Miller were are famous plus size models in America and have walked the runway for shows over the pond
They have traditionally been shunned from the world's catwalks in favour of stick-thin women.

But the rise in popularity of plus-size models is gathering pace as London Fashion Week prepares to host its first show featuring only fuller-figured women. Taking place between 15-16 February 2012, the first London Plus Size Fashion Weekend (LPSFW) is being organised by fashion boutique Trapped in a Skinny World and plus size magazine Evolve.

Split between Beach Blanket Babylon and Shoreditch Town Hall in East London, the event hopes to attract over 500 people and will showcase the work of designers, speakers, models and retailers focusing on curvy women who wear dress size 14 and above.

LPSFW will be sponsored by popular plus size clothing line Simply Be and models from Milk Management will strut the catwalk donning collections from all over Europe and America.

Aside from the show itself, there will be a whole host of activities taking place such as a styling masterclass and plus size pop-up shops, as well as a discussion on the plus size market with panelists like Velvet D'Armour, the first plus size model to walk in a Jean Paul Gautier show and Jessica Kane, chief executive of American plus size magazine Skorch.

The London Plus Size Fashion Weekend will provide a platform to bring the various elements of fashion aimed at the plus size market together. This will be the first event of its kind, creating a community of beautiful and successful plus size women to mingle, talk clothes and feel comfortable about themselves. Speaking about the exciting plans, organiser Remi Ray said: 'The idea behind the London Plus Size Fashion weekend came to me a few years ago.

'I had always felt uncomfortable trying to fit into mainstream fashion when my shape didn’t conform to what is perceived to be mainstream sizes.'After completing my fashion degree I decided to look further into supporting the plus size market and started Trapped in a skinny World, which is a plus-size vintage fashion boutique.'

However, Remi, who studied at London College of Fashion, wanted to go further and put a spotlight on the plus size market by hosting the London Plus Size Fashion weekend show around the same time as the world famous London Fashion Week when fashion's focus will be on the capital.

Remi added: 'We are working night and day to make sure the first ever London plus size fashion weekend event will be a huge success and the first of many.'If our event makes at least one plus size woman overcome her fears and encourages her to indulge in her love for clothes and feeling great, then we will have done our job!'.

Editor of plus size magazine SLiNK Rivkie Baum said: 'We think it's fantastic that there will be a fashion show that recognises plus size women and designers this February. 'However until we see designers within mainstream fashion shows using models of different sizes across the catwalk plus size women remain segregated from the fashion industry. 'But this is a good step in the right direction.'

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