Plus-Sized Designer Makes Her Debut

HOST INTRO: Earlier this week Sports Illustrated announced that Ashley Graham would be featured in the much-anticipated swimsuit Issue. She’s beautiful and she’s bikini-ed but there is one thing that sets Graham apart. She’s plus sized.
And today — the third official day of new york’s fashion week — is the only day where full figured women will have their chance on the catwalk.
Isabella Kulkarni reports behind the scenes at a plus size designer’s big debut.

KULKARNI1: Pamela and Lamarr Nanton are the co-founders and head designers of PLY, a couture brand for curvy women. The husband and wife team does everything from the mock ups to the actual sewing of the garments. Today they’re checking out a gallery space in Chelsea, where new collection will be shown for the first time.
PN: The sewing machine so we can do some last minute repairs (00:07).
KULKARNI2: It’s going to be a big night for the fledgling company. For Pamela, with more than thirty years of experience in the industry, her clothing line is personal.
PN1: Well I’m a curvy girl
KULKARNI3: And being curvy says Pamela inspired her to help women find clothes that fit.
PN1: We wanted to focus on the woman that needs help. We want to give her something that she’s not getting
KULKARNI2: For the Nantons, that means luxury, high fashion and fit. In an industry where bigger is rarely better, Aimee Cheshire the owner of Hey Gorgeous, a plus-sized boutique says, the problem is not the women, it’s the clothes.
AC 1: They realize hey i can look good now and i don’t have to sacrifice that enjoyment
Lamar Nanton says things are changing for plus-size women, and it comes down to creativity.
LN1: we heard a lot of rules of things you shouldn’t do (00:16).
Rules like no pockets on the side seam, no stripes. Ply strives to break those conventions, without sacrificing style. And the news that Sports Illustrated would be featuring a plus -size model in its Swimsuit Issue only serves to further Ply’s Mission.
Pamela: It’s like a checkmark, it’s like okay, this is proof that we’re doing the right thing and there is a need.
A need PLY is prepared to meet. Their New York City Fashion Week show will take place tonight at 6 pm at the Johannes Vogt gallery in Chelsea.
Isabella Kulkarni, Columbia radio news.