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Fashion Site Promises Not To Hire Model Until She Gains Weight

Fashion Site Promises Not To Hire Model Until She Gains Weight

When I write about the fashion industry, it’s usually because a model has been airbrushed within an inch of her life or fired for not being rail-thin, so this story was a refreshing change of pace.  The fashion e-commerce site Revolve has promised model Allie Crandell that they’ll hire her again if she gains weight.  Crandell appeared on The City and sparked what Jezebel blogger Irin Carmon called a “commenter revolt” with every item she modeled for Revolve.

Responding in the comments section, someone from the Revolve staff wrote:

“REVOLVE Team, Los Angeles, CA (Straight/Short)
Hi everyone,Thank you for your concern. We are absolutely aware of the feedback and responses to our model’s weight and it has concerned us as well. We are working closely with both the model and her agent to get her to a healthier size. She won’t be appearing in any of our new product batches or in any of our fashion editorial photos moving forward until the issue is adequately addressed. We appreciate and respect input from our customers and visitors and hope that you find our responses satisfying. We have been attempting to respect the privacy of the model in question while dealing with the issue on our end. We hope you understand. Sincerely,The REVOLVE Team.”

On the one hand, I think this is a hopeful move – the customers spoke out about wanting models who aren’t frighteningly thin, and the website responded.  On the other hand, this does, as Irin points out, turn Crandell’s body into something of a public project, which is quite invasive, especially since we don’t know whether her thinness is the product of an eating disorder or particular lifestyle choices or any of a multitude of factors.  And of course it raises the question that if sites like Revolve shouldn’t be able to fire models for refusing to lose weight, should they be allowed to force models to gain weight?

Still, it seems like we’re moving in a positive direction.  What do you think?

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Photo from Flickr.

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10:47PM PST on Feb 9, 2011

Of course they can tell her to gain weight -- they're paying her.

10:30PM PST on Jan 19, 2011

Ayrika, if you read the article, they didn't force her to do anything. They simply said that she was too thin to represent their company when modeling. It was her choice to gain enough weight to be considered.....or NOT. It's like if you went to apply to be a Police Officer and weren't physically tall enough, or strong enough to do the job. Would you be complaining about discrimination or move on and consider a different career, OR if you wanted to be a cop badly enough, do a bit of physical fitness training? You can't grow taller, but in her case, she could either put on a few pounds or make another career choice.

9:14PM PST on Jan 19, 2011

They shouldn't force her to gain wait, but good job to them though for not hiring victims of anorexia.

7:18AM PST on Jan 13, 2011

I think the fashion site is trying to set an example or start the new trend.DO NOT STAND IN THEIR WAY.

12:46AM PST on Jan 1, 2011

Who cares? She'll just go somewhere else and get hired. The problem is our society only sees thin women as attractive. Is it a coincidence that models get thinner as the average woman increases in weight? Which came first, the chicken or the egg. I'm not comfortable with any of it.

12:17PM PST on Dec 31, 2010

They aren't telling her that she HAS to gain weight, they're saying that they won't hire her again until she does so. I think that's great. Someone has to be protecting the images that children, teens and adults alike now view as acceptable and mandatory.

9:31PM PST on Dec 30, 2010

Too thin looks sick! A little meat on the bones please!

11:53AM PST on Dec 30, 2010

although I'm against forcing someone to do things, I do think this is for a better goal.

4:01AM PST on Dec 30, 2010

isnt it just a public stunt?

4:34PM PST on Dec 29, 2010

I don't like the message the Stick figure Model promotes, I'm not sure if I like the idea of telling a Model she has to gain weight.

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