Creating Healthy Body Image

April 14, 2009

Christine St-Pierre, Quebec’s Minister for the Status of Women, has struck of committee of fashion industry leaders and body image experts to create a voluntary charter to combat anorexia and extreme thinness in fashion and to promote a healthy body image. I was delighted to watch her announce this initiative at Montreal Fashion Week and also to have been invited to serve as a Special Advisor to her Co-Chairs and as a committee member.  90,000 girls and women in Quebec age 12 to 40 suffer from eating disorders, according to the Eating Disorders Program at McGill University.

Our first meeting is April 21st in Montreal. I will deliver a presentation entitled “Re-Designing Fashion: A Pathway to a Healthy Industry and Society.” I will outline the cycle of fashion (fashion schools, designer samples, media, and consumers) that each re-enforce one ideal of beauty and then outline a roadmap for changing each stage of the process to celebrate body variety.

I am confident that if we encourage: (1) fashion schools to have students design garments in different sample sizes, (2) designers to create three different sample sizes (3) magazines to shoot these different samples in their editorials, (4) stores to showcase mannequins of different sizes, we can create a cultural shift that will simultaneously empower the fashion economy and our body image. After all, people with body image issues are not just the public – they are our consumers.

It is a group effort, but I could not ask for a more creative and risk-taking group than my fellow fashionistas.  

Average Female Mannequin

                                                     Average Female Mannequin                                                          Size: 2, Height: 6’0, 32A-23-33

Average North American Woman
Size: 14, Height: 5’4, 41-35-43








2 Responses to “Creating Healthy Body Image”

  1. Rhonda Olsen Says:

    Beautiful! Keep up the good work! My hope is that one day all girls and women will feel really good about their bodies and their health and love themselves unconditionally. :0)

  2. Thank you for fighting the body image bandit! I am a licensed mental health counselor and have had the honor of helping many women and men work through body image issues. I applaud you for joining in the march away from madness that makes women think that thinness is beauty. Body image issues are much more about our hearts and our stories than they are about calories and thighs. I am writing a book and blog about treating the underlying issues of body image issues. Please let me know what you think! Thanks, Cherrie

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