At Plus BKLYN, we love sharing fashionistas who are diverse and body positive. Today, we're chatting with Saucye West, a plus size model and fat activist living in the Bay Area. You'll definitely want to check out Saucye's Instagram.
PBK: Hi Saucye! Thank you for joining us today. We love the light you share online, so we're glad other plus BKLYN babes will get to know you.
Saucye: Glad to be here!
PBK: One of the things we appreciate about you is your love of fashion, and your willingness to discuss your views on body politics. There's a lot of debate right now about the term "plus size." What do you think of it? Are there words you prefer?
Saucye: I love and embrace the term "plus size." It is a term that I use to describe my body, in addition to “fat” and “extended size”. Right now there is a lot of debate over this term and whether or not we should use it. I feel that this is another way to diminish marginalized bodies and try to make us disappear. We need to continue to use this term in our community.
PBK: That makes sense, and I know that this debate comes up a lot among plus size models. Why did you decide to start modeling? What/who inspired you?
Saucye: I started modeling because the lack of visibility with fat bodies in fashion. My goal is to bridge fatness and fashion in a way that we will no longer be looked at as an afterthought in this industry. And that we will be start taking a stand and demanding all the things we deserve in terms of fashion and acceptance.
When I was a little girl my favorite movie was (as still is) Mahogany with Diana Ross. When I saw her as a woman of color take on the stereotypes of what a model was supposed to look like I wanted to do the same thing. Little did I know I would be doing it on a whole different scale!
Blogging came along as a fluke because I didn’t even know what I was doing was blogging when I first got on Instagram! I was just doing radical things with my body and fashion got rolled into that. I remember seeing Chastity Garner and was blown away by her style. She was like who you wanted to be! So I was kind of like, "Hey if we’re gonna do this we gotta do it right!"
PBK: I love that! Diana Ross's wardrobe in that movie is ICONIC. I love that you brought up Instagram as a form of blogging. You started a hashtag movement #FatAndFree on the platform. Can you share the goal behind this movement?
Saucye: Thank you!! #FatAndFree started as a declaration. I took some photos of myself, and I was a little hesitant on posting them. Not because I hated my body or didn’t love myself. But I didn’t know how people were going to react to it. Or if it would attract trolls. I was full of trepidation.
And I said to myself, "Why in the hell am I worried about all that? I’m free to love myself! I’m free to show my fat self, and who cares what people say!" So I posted it and put the hashtag #fatandfree. After that realized I wanted to create a movement. So in 2017, I had events and did photoshoots that showcased people being fat and free. Now the campaign has turned into a movement, and I’m so happy when I see people using the hashtag and just loving their bodies!
PBK: YESSS! It can be hard to overcome that inner critique when sharing online. But you do share amazing photos! How would you describe your style?
Saucye: My personal style is what I call “casually fine”. I actually got the phrase from the movie Boomerang, LOL! I like to be hella simplistic and then have like a statement piece thrown in there. It is basically comfort mixed with sexy. I’ll wear a pair of leggings and a body suit Or a lingerie top. I love dusters! And show my cleavage!
PBK: Here for this aesthetic. What’s coming up that are you excited about?
Saucye: Right now I am working on a new campaign that is focused on extended plus size bodies in fashion. I am also working on #fatandfree merch! Getting final design stuff in order for that. And I really want to work with a designer to create some signature Saucye pieces. And of course creating more content and being as productive as I possibly can.
PBK: Anything else we should know?
Saucye: I’m just really grateful for everyone who supports the dream. And tells me to keep going. It’s hard when I have so many things working against me in this industry. But when I see the small steps we are making it makes me feel good.
Thank you for joining us, Saucye! If you're new to plus BKLYN, be sure to check out our new arrivals!