As Beth Ditto discusses her second plus-size fashion collection, it’s fair to say it is not a typical designer-to-press encounter. When it comes to a dress covered in a print of drops of red, she cackles with glee when I ask if it’s blood: “It’s meant to be nail varnish but it looks like blood – period blood!” The conversation is littered with less-than-orthodox fashion tips. “Go to thrift stores at Halloween. They put all the good stuff at the front because they think people will make costumes with it,” she says. “I got a great muumuu recently. That’s a new thing for me – a muumuu and knee socks.”
Beth Ditto the label is for plus-size women like her, but those who might not always want to rock the kind of look found in a thrift store. It features wide, wafty numbers as well as structured designs, such as the bestselling Lola dress (below). Prints are big, including that nail varnish one, and another of eyelashes. Talking of conversation, here is what we found out in 10 minutes in Ditto’s rather delightful company.
She likes the word ‘fat’
“People probably won’t like that, but I do. I much prefer it to ‘curvy’. I’m not a road, I’m a human. I think plus-size is fine too. At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter because what matters is that we’re in a process of change.
She is reclaiming the word ‘flattering’
People think it means slimming, but it doesn’t. I’m putting it out there that things that make you look bigger are cool, like Missy Elliot in the coat. No one should be afraid to take up space.
Meeting Kate Moss was a revelation
I was so down on modelling before I met any models, which was sexism, actually. She taught me so much; she taught me how to stand. She has this attitude that is so punk rock – she doesn’t care.
She thinks deeply about emojis
I use the smiley face with the hearts for eyes as my emoji. I think the cat with heart eyes isn’t serious enough. My mom’s favourite emoji is the frog, just because she likes frogs.
She’s in on the crop-top trend – sort of
The last piece of clothing I bought was a crop top from Forever 21. I’m not really a crop-top person, but I thought it would look cool under something. Now I need to find the thing to put over it.