Hers was the face that launched a thousand ads. Whether it was in denims and a tank top, her lithe fingers cradling a can, or nude next to a bottle of perfume, Cindy Crawford was the ultimate heartthrob of the 1980s, famous for the distinctive mole gracing her upper lip. But before she sashayed to popularity, she was plagued with insecurities about her ‘beauty mark’. Kids teased her in school; her sister thought it was hideous, and convinced her to get rid of it. But her mother persuaded her to let it be and soon after, that ‘ugliness’ propelled her to fashion stardom.
Like Cindy, the Indian fashion industry is now ardently embracing the ‘imperfections’ and differences that make us human. Waif-like figures, those walking clothes-hangers, still rule the runway. But space has been made for diverse body types, ages, colours, ethnicities and gender identities. The chubbily plump, the dwarfishly short, the queerishly trans, or those on wheel chairs. The fashion police can’t dictate terms to a populace that is finally free of corseted ideals. Designs have become universal—they must be comfortable and look good not only on models, but on as many people as possible.
This is inclusive fashion. And one of its cheerleaders is The Pot Plant, a gender-fluid clothing brand run by Resham Karmchandani and Sanya Suri. “We use fashion to tell our truth. For us, inclusive fashion is giving everybody the comfort and freedom to be who they are. It’s about living life beyond labels and finding our identity as individuals.”
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