I read about Crystal Renn's book Hungry several months ago. Crystal Renn is an incredibly gorgeous plus-sized model who talks in her book about her struggles with an eating disorder that she developed as a way to succeed in the fashion industry. It's not the kind of book I would typically read, but I took notice because Crystal grew up in Clinton, Mississippi.
I hadn't thought about her again until last week when I was flipping through some fashion blogs (one of my obsessions), and I saw this shot from the Chanel Resort Collection 2011.
It's Crystal Renn. And, this is not a "plus-size" show. She is on the catwalk with willowy models. How did she break through and become mainstream in the fashion industry?
I did a little googling and found this video of her promoting her book, and I picked up a copy of Hungry from our library. Watch:
I've just started the book and have read a few interviews, but here's her secret: She finally became true to herself. She let herself be the physical person she was supposed to be--without the dangerous starvation--and suddenly she landed spots in Vogue, Glamour, and all the biggest couture shows. When she was starving herself, she didn't get those kinds of jobs. Her body was never meant to look that way and it showed. She did some editorial work and walked the catwalk a few times, but it wasn't until she let herself be healthy and authentic that she found true success (both financial and emotional).
Hi. My name is Sarah Frances Hardy. And, I am a lawyer.
When I was practicing law, I was miserable. My job wasn't particularly stressful--no criminal trials or intense litigation--but I was in a state of complete dissatisfaction. I would work at the law firm everyday until around 6:00 and then I would go to my studio and try to paint until around 11:00. I wasn't doing a good job at either place, and my body reacted. My esophagus closed up, and I had to go to the hospital and have it stretched out. It was from stress.
Any of you who know me, know that I am pretty even-keeled. I'm not a walking bundle of neuroses, so I was shocked that my body reacted this way. My supportive husband told me that something had to give, and he let me choose.
No brainer. I needed to be creative. That was my authentic self.
I haven't popped a pepcid since.
As stressful as this whole trying-to-get-published ordeal is, I'm okay with it. I feel like I'm doing what I should be doing and that I'm being true to myself. If success comes with that, well, then that's just the icing . . . like Crystal, I feel like I'm letting myself have the cake.