New Models for John Lewis

British Department store chain John Lewis announced recently that they will be introducing new, larger-sized mannequins at their Peterborough branch. If the mannequins go over well there, they will be used throughout the chain soon.

The current mannequins used by John Lewis are equivilant to a US size 10. The average British woman wears approximately a size 16. The mannequins are size 14. This means the mannequins will still be smaller than the average customer, but by a much smaller margin.

In response to recent criticism of unrealistic images being used to sell women’s clothing, the chain made the somewhat radical decision to use a size twelve model on the cover of a recent swimsuit catalogue. The model, Lauren Moller, was brought in from South Africa because none of the agencies John Lewis usually hires models from had a girl that large on their books. They were directed to agencies that work with plus-size models.

“We were astonished,” a representative of the company said. “Size 12 isn’t big. It’s still quite slim.”

The catalogue was a hit, sales skyrocketed, and the company has decided to see if more of the same approach will continue to be successful.

So if any Big Girl readers are in Peterborough anytime soon, be sure to visit the local John Lewis and weigh in on the new mannequins.

8 Responses to “New Models for John Lewis”

  1. Em September 24, 2007 at 7:21 am #

    The spokesman was quoted in Daily Mail saying that her BMI is 19. I mean, HELLO, she’s one bout of diarrhea away from being “morbidly underweight” courtesy of the much-cited WHO! And they were “astonished”, no less, that she’s “quite slim”!
    “The photographs show you can be size 12 and be healthy and beautiful.” Really? Healthy? That fat pig? Astonishing! And they had to fly her in all the way from South Africa because you couldn’t find a model so huge anwhere in the UK? Have you seen that girl? Would you even have noticed that she’s supposed to be bigger than other models? There’s an army of catalog and lingerie models all over Europe who are exactly her size, or bigger.

    This makes me so mad, every time. Like all these suposedly body-positive articles you find in women’s magazines recently, about women who embrace their fat, imperfect selves at a voluptuous, overweight 130 pounds. I’d rather keep looking at starving size zero models forever than stand this hypocrisy.

  2. Laura September 24, 2007 at 10:53 pm #

    “Size 12 isn’t big. It’s still quite slim.” Well, duh. Especially considering most models are between 5’9″ and 6′ tall, a size 12 is quite slim at that height. Pardon my foul language, but welcome to the real world, dipshit.

    Em – where did you find that article?

  3. Em September 28, 2007 at 5:21 am #

    Here it is!

  4. Em September 28, 2007 at 5:35 am #

    By the way, given her height (5’8″) and the BMI they’re stating, her weight must 130 pounds.

    I think there is some confusion over British and US sizes in this entry, too. The “bigger” models they are planning to use in the future are British size 10, which is an American 6 or 8, so, nothing that spectacular, really, for non-catwalk models.

  5. The Stickler September 28, 2007 at 9:32 am #

    “The current mannequins used by John Lewis are equivilant to a US size 10.”

    I agree with everyhting… but surely you meant “equivalent”?

    Hooray for bigger models and for better spelling! :)

  6. Ponytail September 29, 2007 at 6:20 am #

    Any reason John Lewis aren’t using the new model at their flagship store ? ‘Cause I’ve been to Peterborough and I can’t imagine anyone thinks a revolution is going to start there. It would have been a much better idea to put the new mannequins in their largest store, upfront, where more people could have seen it.

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