Rum + Coke fashion designer only uses ‘larger women of color’ in her campaigns

A new clothing label is challenging the fashion industry’s negative views about beauty and appearance by only using plus-size women of color to model its designs, despite offering its clothing in every size from 2 to 22.

The label, Rum + Coke , is the brainchild of New York-based designer Courtney Smith, who launched the label last year with the motto: ‘You, woman, are enough. Women are beautiful in whatever package they come in.’

Ms Smith told Refinery 29: ‘No one questions why there are only small women in other brands’ shoots. I put women of color and “larger” women in my photo shoots… because there are so many women who seldom see women who look like them in advertisements.’

Ms Smith, who graduated from Williams College in Massachusetts with a degree in Women and Africana studies, says she believes in ‘the multiplicity of beauty.’
Her figure-hugging gowns cost between $48 and $200 and one of Ms Smith’s bestsellers is a low-cut shimmering sequin number she often wears herself.

‘There are so many negative messages,’ she remarks of the fashion world. ‘You’re not thin enough, you’re not young enough, you’re not light enough.’

Ms Smith says her designs are influenced by real women in her life and that Rum + Coke is for ‘the woman who is full of herself.’

She maintains an active conversation with her customers and fans on Instagram, often challenging her 7,000-strong following with what she should wear out.

‘I truly believe that women should feel confident and beautiful every time we get dressed,’ she says.

Source: The DailyMail

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