The co-founders of theCURVYcon, the convention that just wrapped at New York Fashion Week, created the event to provide a space for plus-sized women.
Chastity Garner and Cece Olisa are both plus-size fashion bloggers who say they saw an opportunity to build something for women who were otherwise underrepresented.
“We built theCURVYcon to allow women to be able to shop in person and have important conversations with some of their favorite plus-size celebrities, influencers and just girlfriends,” Garner told “GMA.”
Along with the panels and activities, there were also shops on the first floor of the event, where women were able to buy clothes in person.
theCURVYcon is an initiative that strikes home for Garner and Olisa.
“We both know what it feels like to be plus-size trying to look cute and trying to figure it out,” Olisa said.
The founder of online clothing brand Rebdolls, Grisel Paula said her brand was at the convention “representing all of the beautiful fashion for curvy women.”
Project Runway Season 14 winner Ashley Nell Tipton said it is crucial for “brands to cater to plus-size women because there’s so many of us out there that we need fashionable clothing.”
We want to be fashionable people.
As a designer and plus-size woman herself, Tipton said: “It is the time now to allow us to express ourselves through our clothing and not just dumb us down with frumpy clothing.”
The three-day convention was packed with influencers, celebrities and lots of women looking for a space to embrace their bodies.
Among this year’s celebrities were WWE Stars Nikki Bella and Nia Jax.
The pair attended the event, Jax said, to “talk to people about our story about building body positivity and confidence.”
Jax told “GMA” she has struggled with her own body image issues in the past.
“Personally, I know that it’s taken me a few different kinds of workouts to find out what’s good for me because I completely relate sometimes when I’m like I don’t really want to go to the gym because I don’t want people to see me like this,” she said.
Bella said she felt the same way.
“Finding the right workout for you and knowing that your body loves it [and] you love it because you don’t want to have to force yourself to go to a workout ever because a workout is truly therapy,” Bella added.
When thinking of the impact this event has had on so many women, Garner said: “The biggest compliment we could ever get at theCURVYcon is when one of our attendees comes alone and then the next year they bring their girlfriends."
"It just is a testament of how fun theCURVYcon is, how empowering it is, and what an impact we’ve made on those girls lives,” Garner added.
Messages to anyone struggling with their confidence
“Don’t wait on your weight to live the life you want. That’s how we live our lives. That’s how we created theCURVYcon. So if you are worried about the size of your jeans dictating your life, you don’t have to do that. You’re beautiful and you deserve love.”
-- Cece Olisa, theCURVYcon co-founder
“For all the women and the young girls that are out there trying to find their way with all that’s coming at them to be something that they might not want to be or that they’re not, we all have our own railroad tracks. Stay on our own tracks. Don’t let other people try and knock you off, get you upset, or take away your power. You are uniquely you. You should be exactly who you are and rock that space and stay on your own train tracks because that’s the only place to be.”
-- Emme, Supermodel, MySizeID Consultant
“It’s having those goals and conquering them because when you concur those goals you feel so accomplished and nothing feels or tastes better than that, I promise you.”
-- Nikki Bella, WWE wrestler
“Enjoy the process because it is what makes you who you are. Me finding my confidence took me a while but now I love that I went through everything I did before to get to where I am now.”
-- Nia Jax, WWE Wrestler