As we got closer to the Finale event, circumstances changed for me; I was asked to take part in two panels, The State of The Curvy Community and The Aspiring Models Seminar. I graciously accepted and was very much looking forward to taking part; I had such a wonderful time last year being on panel.
The panels took place on Friday, June 18th at The Hotel Pennsylvania across from Madison Square Garden. I was dressed to impress in my Lane Bryant green and white ensemble that was brought together very beautifully by the brown belt .
The Aspiring Models panel was moderated by Sharon Quinn; Industry Liason for PLUS Model Magazine, a former Wilhelmina Model and has been seen on various campaigns, Mo’Niques Fat Chance and MTV’s show MADE. On the panel was Anthony Higgins – Director of the most successful fit agency in the US; Model Service Agency, Larissa Laurel, – successful fit model and PLUS Model Magazine Industry Editor, Designer – Douglas Says, Producer of BET’s Rip The Runway Aminah Benjamin and CEO/Creator of Full Figured Fashion Week Gwen DeVoe.
Sharon had prepared a slide show that included everything about the industry and went over the details while asking the panelists to elaborate when necessary. The information was current, honest and brought a very clear perspective to those women who had any questions about where they fit in. I thoroughly enjoyed watching the slide show, which included several PLUS Model Magazine covers as reference, because it was the very information that aspiring models need to know.
Modeling is an investment, it’s a business and you have to have thick skin because it’s not about people being nice to you. The business of modeling is about you being able to sell what the client is having you wear. I think many times models think they are pretty enough but do you KNOW how to model? Are you willing to invest the money and time to prepare without knowing whether you will make it or not. This is the reality of the business and just a snippet of what was discussed. If this is offered again next year, and you are an aspiring model, you should absolutely attend.
After a brief break, the State Of The Curvy Community panel began. Panelist included: Comedienne and actress Erica Watson, Yullya Raquel Founder/Designer at Igigi, Golda Poretsky, Founder of Body Love Wellness and plus size fashion blogger and personality from Diary of a Mad Fashionista.
This panel was a bit different; it was an open dialogue between the attendees and the panel. Great questions were raised about plus size confidence, plus size unity and plus size health and the truth behind the fat debate. Even though I already knew about the feedback Erica Watson received after her appearance on the Dr. Phil show, it was hard to hear how people on both sides of the fence reacted to her commitment to lose weight to feel better about herself and health concerns. This was one of the best topics raised because it led us into how, as a plus size community, we need to be supportive of one another and help celebrate each other’s successes and triumphs.
After the end of each panel I met new wonderful women, facebook friends and readers from as far away as Paris.
You would think I would have been tired of talking after that, but I still had some energy left and I went to dinner with Reah Norman who was here from LA for the events and to receive her award as Stylist of The Year.
Saturday, the night of the FFF Week Finale Event, started with a VIP Reception at the Park Central Hotel. After walking the red carpet we were escorted to the reception area where I sipped on Sonsitini’s and mingled with Host, Emme Aronson, More to Love’s Tali Giat, Fuller Woman Expo’s Cassy-Jones McBryde and Daily Venus Divas, Stephanie Dansworth; to name a few. Everyone was greeted by the lovely Rosie Mercado, The Face of FFF Week. Guest were also able to briefly congratulate CEO of DeVoe Signature Event’s, Gwen DeVoe, as she made a brief appearance.
After about an hour, we made our way to the ballroom where the show was taking place. I was supposed to be tweeting from the show but my plan was spoiled when I realized the ballroom was below level and I did not have any reception. Luckily for us, Luke had a great spot at the end of the runway and I would have amazing pictures to be able to share with you from our very own staff photographer Lucaspictures.net.
Since then there has been coverage about FFF Week all around the globe. Coverage has been coming in from as far away as India,Australia and all over Europe and Asia. At the end of the day we cannot forget what the purpose of Full Figured Fashion Week really is. It’s not just about the beautiful venue, gorgeous models or the industry people we were able to rub elbows with. Full Figured Fashion Week was created as a platform to celebrate and feature designers who care and respect the plus size woman. They know we deserve to look good and are willing to spend the money to look the way we feel and boy do I feel good right now. It’s been days since the events ended and I’m still feeling the buzz in my stomach over witnessing history in the making.
As the July issue is just a week away, we are preparing a spectacular wrap up pictorial of the finale event we are sure you will enjoy. So check us out at www.plusmodelmag.com on July 1st.
If you have not visited our Facebook Fanpage (www.facebook.com/plusmodelmag) check it out for our Sneak Peak into the FFF Week finale event.
*Special thanks to Lane Bryant for providing me with the clothing I wore for the panels and for the finale event. I received many compliments both days and felt absolutely wonderful, Reah Norman for helping me to cover all the events and the FFF Week staff for making our press experience a pleasurable one.