A big way fashion designers get their names out there is by dressing artists with star power, usually for free. While on the red carpet, hosts with beaming, artificial smiles will approach each celebrity and ask who they're wearing. The celeb will drop a name and then mugs at home or whoever's watching all over the world will think, "Ahh yes now I need a Johnny Walkabout gown for my next quinceañera / prom / bat mitzvah / wedding / Ramadan dinner / high school dance-off."
The more high-profile a celebrity, the bigger a deal it is when they wear your clothing, especially if they look good in it. I'm pretty sure there are suit designers throwing money and free clothing at Leonardo DiCaprio to rock their designs. Actresses like Jennifer Lawrence and Scarlet Johansson aren't starving for designers either, I'd imagine.
And for the upcoming Grammy Awards, you'd figure a female artist with a crazy Instagram following who's also nominated for two awards of her own would have designers jumping at the chance to dress her, but according to Bebe Rexha, they're not.
The "I'm a Mess" singer hopped onto Instagram to blast designers she and her team reached out to, who told the star she's "too big" for them to dress her.
Rexha pointed out that most of the clothes she wears are a size 6-8, and designers are alienating not just her, but every other woman who isn't "runway sized":
"If a size 6-8, is too big, then I don’t know what to tell you. Then I don’t want to wear your $#@! dresses. ‘Cause that’s crazy. … You’re saying that all the women in the world that are size 8 and up are not beautiful, and they cannot wear your dresses."
Statistically speaking, Bebe makes a very good point. Studies show 68 percent of women in America wear a size 14 or above, so there is a definite lack of representation for different body types on the red carpet. What's even crazier is that Bebe is kind of a sex symbol in addition to being a singer-songwriter. If designers aren't going to dress her, how should other, "less-glamorous" people feel about their clothing?
In her post, she encouraged followers to embrace their bodies. " "If you don’t like my fashion style or my music that’s one thing. But don’t say you can’t dress someone who isn’t a runway size. Empower women to love their bodies instead of making girls and women feel less than by their size. We are beautiful any size! Small or large!"
In venting her frustrations, Bebe may have ultimately found herself a solution to her Grammy's dress problems. The names of other designers started pouring in, some who reached out themselves and others who volunteered names.
Big Bang Theory's Mayim Bialik tweeted the name of her stylist at Rexha, stating she too is a size 8 and loves the dresses Adena Rohatiner selects for her.
Even runway models themselves chimed in to support Rexha's message. Tyra Banks tweeted that the designers who don't want to put their clothes on Rexha are "dumb."
Rexha's been getting nothing but support after her Instagram post, and she's definitely not the first, and probably won't be the last high-profile celebrity who'll be forced to deal with designers who aren't making outfits flattering to her body type.
Megan Mullally — aka the best part of Will & Grace — vented on Instagram herself back in December, saying she was going to buy her Screen Actors Guild awards dress online, as is always the case. Never mind the fact she was hosting the damn show.
Then there's Leslie Jones. The SNL star had difficulty finding a designer to dress her up for the premiere of Ghostbusters: "It's so funny how there are no designers wanting to help me with a premiere dress for movie. Hmmm that will change and I remember everything."
For both Leslie and Megan, Project Runway's Christian Siriano stepped up to solve their dress woes.
I think it's naive to believe designers who only choose to dress certain body types are going to go out of business for turning away artists who don't "fit" their ideal clothes-making frame. But it does look pretty bad for your brand when another company or designer happily jumps at the opportunity to do so, makes them look fabulous, and then garners a bunch of press for their name.
I personally think Rexha is going to be just fine and look fabulous in whatever she wears to the Grammys.
I mean, this is a woman who goes for a swim wearing this:
On second thought, maybe finding an outfit fabulous enough for Bebe was just too much of a challenge, and that's why they turned her away. Who just hangs out by the pool looking like they're auditioning for the next 300 film? Bebe Rexha, that's who.