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Photo of the Remarkables mountain range in Queenstown, New Zealand.


For too long, the mainstream and high end fashion industry had marginalised curvy and plus size people. In years past, look, and you would hardly find any curvy model strutting the runways of designer catwalk shows. Oh, except for a "token few".

In Africa, curves have been celebrated for centuries. The term thick madam in "Naija speak" is synonymous with success, good health, and being well looked after by one's spouse and otherwise.

Within some African cultures, before a woman gets married, she goes into what is known as fattening room. She is fed, doted on hand and foot, so that on the wedding day, she comes out fresh and plump.

Because fashion houses created what they considered the "ideal size" to model their designs, plus sizes were relegated to high street and mail order brands (often very bland designs). Or better still "go to a dress maker near you" for a made to measure outfit. But thank goodness all that is changing, as diversity and inclusivity is now the name of the game. A few designers like Michael Kors, Chanel, Chromat, Christian Siriano etc. have featured some plus size models on their runways.

Although there is still a lot to do bridging that gap, high end designers have finally taken a cue from Africa. This is because, the plump woman had always been catered for, both by mainstream African designers and unknown tailors.

These beautiful women, at every given occasion walk with pride in their well-tailored "to accentuate their figures" outfits. They wear these clothes perfectly, often with the right accessories. The elegance with which they carry themselves is the stuff of dreams for any designer, seeing their creation celebrated that way, not on the runway, but as clothes should be seen. "In real life".

In the UK, there is an African plus size model named Marie Angele Lago. She is proudly keeping African culture alive and well in her different ventures and showing off her curves.

She is British, originally from Cote d'Ivoire, the CEO/Founder, Diversity of Culture and Fashion Ltd. An actress, TV presenter, entrepreneur and curvy mature model who had also won 2nd prize at the first edition of CACI-UK i.e. COMITE AWOULABA COTE D'IVOIRE-UK.

Marie Angele Lago represents everything positive about curvy models. She is confident and very passionate about promoting herself, and the African culture. Her ability to interpret roles, or representing other cultures aside her own, comes through quite flawlessly. This, she stated is because of her multi talentedness which she is not afraid for all to see.

Before relocating to the UK, Marie was the assistant to the CEO/Founder of a Timberland company. She was also assistant manager of an insurance firm. The first of 6 children, Marie Angele Lago is mother to a teenager girl and is currently working on her TV show The Marie Lago TV show where she aims to cover every subject within and outside the Ivorian community.

Marie stands out as a true representation of diversity and inclusivity. And hopefully with the change in sight, paves way for the younger generation of plus size models to approach high end designers confidently and fearlessly for a place on their catwalk shows.


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