A swimsuit calendar featuring full-figured models is making a big splash with a cover image that shows a curvier alternative to the 2014 Sports Illustrated’s Swimsuit Edition.
It features plus-size model Robyn Lawley and three others in a pose that mimics the 50th anniversary SI calendar, which showed the backsides of three supermodels wearing barely-there thongs.
The calendar called ‘Sexy At Every Curve’ was produced by New Jersey-based online retailer Swimsuits For All, which came up with the idea after the latest SI calendar failed to include curvy women in its lineup of international supermodels.
“We heard rumors there was going to be a plus-sized model featured in Sports Illustrated, but that didn’t come to be,” Sara Mitzner, Content Director for Swimsuits For All, told Lingerie Talk. “When there wasn’t any curvy model represented, we were sort of disappointed. So we figured we should do it anyways.”
The S4A calendar, which exists only online and covers the five summer months from May to September, was shot in the Turks and Caicos and features Australian Lawley along with curvy models Jada Sezer, Shareefa Radford and blogger Gabi Gregg.
But the project wasn’t meant to criticize Sports Illustrated, Metzner insisted.
“It wasn’t a shot at them at all,” she said. “We’re huge fans of them, and this was a chance to pay homage in a way. We love Sports Illustrated, but we say curvy girls are just as sexy. We’re all about swimsuits for all.”
And so far, the S4A project is turning into one of the year’s biggest viral marketing hits.
“We’ve had an amazing response,” Mitzner said. “We’re so excited. It’s not only been well received by real women and our existing customers, but the fashion community has really gotten behind it too. We’re just over the moon.”
Since its unveiling last Tuesday, the ‘Sexy At Every Curve’ campaign has received media attention from Cosmo, Marie Claire, Elle, Jezebel, Yahoo and Buzzfeed as well as shout-outs from supportive celebrities like Zooey Deschanel and Jordin Sparks. It was also profiled on the Today show this morning, and a two-minute video to accompany the campaign has racked up nearly 250,000 views on You Tube.
But the most welcome notice came from Sports Illustrated Swimwear itself, which gave a big thumbs-up to the S4A calendar on Twitter this morning.
It’s all great promotion for Swimsuits For All, a 9-year-old company that introduced its first ‘Swim Sexy’ line last year. Earlier this year launched a designer swimwear shop online featuring premium pieces from Michael Kors, Jessica Simpson, Badgley Mischka, Kenneth Cole and others, including Robyn Lawley‘s own swimwear line.
The calendar is also something of a star turn for Gabi Gregg, the blogger known as GabiFresh, who created a capsule swimwear collection for S4A last summer and modeled it in a lively Spring Breakers-inspired photoshoot.
For now, the S4A calendar only exists on the company’s website, although 50 printed copies will be given to winners of a giveaway contest on Gabi’s blog. Based on the overwhelming response and increased traffic to its website, however, Mitzner said Swimsuits For All will “consider” publishing a full calendar and offering it for sale.
They’re also hoping Sports Illustrated will get the hint and include plus-sized models in next year’s magazine and calendar.
“We’d definitely like to see that,” Mitzner said. “There’s such a range of sizes in the real world, from thin to more curvy and everything in between. We feel it’s really important that it’s portrayed that way online and in the media.
“We’re doing our part, by portraying all the different women who exist in the real world.”