Friday, February 25, 2011

Lane Bryant Las Vegas Fashion Finale Weekend

Today marks one week since I flew out to Las Vegas to join Lane Bryant in celebrating their first live runway fashion show in almost 10 years. The weekend was full of fun, fashion and fabulous women celebrating exactly what it means to be Bombshells.

I joined fellow Lane Bryant-sponsored bloggers Madeline Jones (editor in chief of Plus Model Magazine), Aimee Cheshire (co-owner of Madison Plus)and Esther Brandon (Ms. Plus America 2010)to cover a weekend packed full of activities that led up to the fashion show. We were joined by several other fabulous women like Reah Norman (plus fashion stylist for Plus Model Magazine, City Chic & Sealed with a Kiss Designs), Fluvia Lacerda (face of Igigi and Eliza Parker, among others) and Curves & Chaos blogger, Monique.

Among the weekend's events, standouts included a bra fitting with the development team behind Lane Bryant's lingerie brand, Cacique. You can check out my experience here:

On Sunday, I was part of a media panel pulled together to ask questions of Lane Bryant's Sr. VP of Marketing, Jay Dunn. I met Jay last June at the Lane Bryant Blogger's Conference, so knew him to be an engaging speaker. He talked about the excitement and energy that the Cacique line has infused into the core Lane Bryant brand, as evidenced by all the swirl around last year's TV ad featuring plus supermodel Ashley Graham in a red panty set.

I asked him how Lane Bryant plans to transfer the excitement and sexiness of the Cacique brand over to their sportswear collection. He said dresses will play a big role in that translation (yay!)and so too do trends like leggings and jeggings. We can also expect to see a quicker turnover of merchandise in the stores as their design teams send new styles into stores every few weeks instead of on a monthly rhythm. Jay ended by saying Lane Bryant's future is going to be built on three promises that they're making to their customer: better fit, better quality and being on time with trends.

Sunday night was the big fashion show. I have to say that from a fashion point of view, I've never been part of anything more exciting, more dynamic, or more emotional than Lane Bryant's fashion show. The clothes were gorgeous - they were styled in a way that was trendy but attainable, glamourous but completely wearable. And the best part? Ninety-nine percent of what we saw on the runway is part of the spring/summer collections available in stores.

There were several "scenes" that were staged, ranging from a saucy cowgirl theme (complete with very hot, scantily clad cowboys dancing around the models) to an oooh la la chic Paris scene (in which the models walked pink poodles down the runway). Every detail, from the music to the way the models strutted down the runway was electric. And let's talk about those models for a second.

One, it was incredibly surreal to see live, in-person the very same girls peering up at me from the pages of my Lane Bryant magalogs. And two, they all owned their bodies - jiggly butts, thick thighs and cellulite, tummy rolls and bouncing breasts. I could actually identify with the women I saw strutting around in adorable panty sets & casually chic day outfits.

By the end of the show, when Ashley Graham struck one final pose in a very sexy lingerie set just as the entire crowd was showered in colorful paper confetti, the air was electric with the energy of hundreds of women who felt truly represented in the fashion world. Here, listen to what Maddy had to say about the experience:

In line for cocktails at the fashion show's after party, I caught up with Cacique's lead designer Gill Heer. I congratulated her on creating such beautiful clothes and presenting them to us in such an inspiring, sexy way. Gill responded, "As a lingerie designer, a plus size woman is who I want to create for. That's what beautiful lingerie is supposed to look like -on curves!" And that pretty much summed up the entire weekend.

Here's a slide show of the outfits I wore over the course of the weekend.

You can view more videos, including portions of the show and backstage footage beforehand, on the LaneBryantCurves youtube channel.

You guys know I am definitely not a photographer, but I have scoped out a fellow blogger with fantastic images from the fashion show. Check out Netta P's post to see her pictures.

*Lane Bryant paid for my airfare and VIP access to the weekend's events.

**I'd like to thank LucieLu for sending me to Vegas with the gorgeous Estelle dress and a very cute butterfly-printed tunic (no longer available)which made me feel stylish and comfortable while flying to and from Vegas.


  1. I love your sense of style and how you keep it classy. Can't wait to see you again this summer!

  2. Love the recap, esp the slide show of your outfits.

  3. When you are at these sort of things, do you feel a need to "outdo" what other women are wearing, or is it nothing like that?

  4. Leslie, I really don't feel the need to try to outdo other women at these things. I'm not a very competetive person -I want to see other women succeed and look fabulous, too.

  5. Sounds like a great time and you looked great.

  6. i absolutely LOVE that navy blue tunic you wore in one of those pictures with the lacy looking shoulders?

    you looked fun and fabulous!

  7. What a fabulous time you had! I'm sooo jealous! =)


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