The fashion world continues its uphill battle to be inclusive of all different kinds of women: body types, shapes, sizes, skin color, hair color, and so on. The reason we call it uphill? Because no matter how much progress is made, it always seems like there's more to be done. Case in point: Calvin Klein Underwear's commendable choice to cast a size-10 model in its latest Perfectly Fit campaign.
The model is 27-year-old Myla Dalbesio, a self-described "in-between" model. Despite the fact that, technically, Dalbesio is a far cry from being plus-size (typically defined as being size 12 and above), it didn't take long for the media to hear about Calvin Klein's casting decision and immediately attach the plus-size label to her.
"I am among one of many girls that are, like, 'in-betweenies,'" Dalbesio told the Today show in response to all the controversy over her body. "So we're not skinny enough to be straight-size—these size 0, size 2 girls—and we're not large enough to be considered for plus-size. I think that Calvin Klein has done something that's really groundbreaking, which is they released this campaign with what some would say is a normal-size model, a size 10. And size-10 girls, there's not a lot of spots for us to fit in in the fashion industry. "
"It’s kind of confusing because I’m a bigger girl,” Dalbesio told Elle in a recent interview. “I’m not the biggest girl on the market, but I’m definitely bigger than all the girls [Calvin Klein] has ever worked with, so that is really intimidating. It’s not like [Calvin Klein] released this campaign and were like, ‘Whoa, look, there’s this plus-size girl in our campaign.’ They released me in this campaign with everyone else; there’s no distinction. It’s not a separate section for plus-size girls."
After the mislabeling of Dalbesio as plus-size, the public swiftly took to Twitter to attack the underwear brand, even though they never used that term. "The new Calvin Klein Underwear Perfectly Fit imagery features models Myla Dalbesio, Jourdan Dunn, Amanda Wellsh, Ji Hye Park, and the face of the brand, Lara Stone, in several styles," the brand said in a statement to the New York Times. "The Perfectly Fit line was created to celebrate and cater to the needs of different women, and these images are intended to communicate that our new line is more inclusive and available in several silhouettes in an extensive range of sizes."
For our part, it continues to be frustrating that anything above a straight size six is often considered to be "plus-size." Dalbesio looks absolutely stunning in the campaign, and the fact that she is an "in-between" size is refreshing, as this category of womenswear sizing is the most frequently ignored.
Keep scrolling to see the beautiful shots of Dalbesio from the campaign!
What do you think of the whole plus-size conversation in fashion? Tell us in the comments below!