We seem to have opened a heated debate about weight. Let's continue shall we?
I had a pot pourri planned for today, but this is infinitely more interesting. As women we're irrevocably invested in this most delicate subject and there is more to say.
We're constantly pushed and pulled this way and that about those numbers on the scale. More and more of us are exercising and trying to eat well. Good for us. My experience in France is that French women do generally eat well. They include the requisite fruits and vegetables in their regimes, they walk, walk, walk and bicycle whenever they can. They drink small amounts of wine and desserts are treats. (I'm speaking from my own experience.) It is beyond my imagination to think of a French woman slipping out of bed in the deep of night to consume a carton of ice cream with a few macarons.
Forgive me for this lapse in precision, which I'm paraphrasing here without credit: Years ago I read somewhere that the question, "What do you think of when someone mentions chocolate cake?" was posed to French and American women, the French said "special occasion, a treat" and the Americans said, "sinful." Interesting mindset, non?
Of course French women take their car to the mall, but they'll ride their velo to the village shops and they weave with terrifying purpose -- sans helmet, skirts flying in the breeze, heels hooked over the pedals -- in and out of traffic in Paris. Thank goodness there are more and more bicycle lanes, but drivers often don't respect the dividing lines.
We all know that when a need presents itself, a marketing and product campaign jumps into or onto the opportunity. This translates into those hot sectors, plus sizes and the anti-aging bandwagon.
Magazines rely on advertisements to survive thus they have no choice but to address subjects they might otherwise like to pretend don't exist. Their tack is always glamor, glamor at every age and every size.
In the French Elle edition of this week there were, in my opinion, some unkindly unflattering fashion choices for the models. They may look like "fun" in a fashion shoot with the wind machines whipping lush, long tresses in the artificial breeze, the lighting and makeup just so, but what information is this sending out to the real world? Has the benediction been given to bare all, wear jerseys that pull across the body? Once again, mixed messages. Don't we simply want to look the best we can working with our natural resources?
From the top: Tara wearing a great combination of pieces, right down to the glasses; just below French model Johanna Dray (a size 46/48, but 5'11" which makes a huge difference in proportions and possibilities) looking sleek by maintaining that famous unbroken line. It doesn't matter that the jacket hits at a potentially unflattering point, the line is the unbroken rule.
Center: Tara in the peacock chair. Thought this might stir-up the cauldron.
Finally: Tara in an adorable photograph modeling a great dress by Sandro she probably shouldn't be wearing. However, the scale of the necklace is perfect for her size.
And, Stephanie Zwicky, 5' 6" and a size 52, wearing a Lanvin dress which I cannot believe exists in her size. My guess would be, after all the photo shoot styling I've done, that the dress was slit up the back like a hospital gown, except with less coverage. If I'm wrong, I apologize en avance. Stephanie has a blog dedicated to the big and the beautiful.
Pictures of Tara are by David Oldham, those of Johanna and Stephanie by Kate Barry. (For those of you who are Jane Birkin fans, Barry is her daughter.)