Actress and director Lena Dunham has vowed to challenge a perception that plus-size women are “stupid” with an inclusive new clothing range.
The Girls star, 34, has collaborated with retailer 11 Honore on a fashion line, with the actress modelling in the campaign imagery as well as co-designing the collection.
11 Honore x Lena Dunham will consist of five pieces, co-created with the retailer's in-house designer Danielle Williams Eke, and launch on Tuesday.
"I've been a size 4 on the red carpet and a size 16 – I wish I could say that the experience of getting dressed was the same, but it's just not," said Dunham on Instagram as she announced the collaboration.
"When you're thin – no matter the reason – there's a kind of inherent nod of congratulations that comes from being able to fit into runway samples and look the part of a Hollywood starlet. And while some designers have embraced my plus size body, there's always the inherent implication by others that by doing so they have bravely risen to some kind of 'challenge'."
The star, who is also a published author, said the collaboration was about cultivating "a space where the question of whether a plus body will be embraced by the clothes is a non-issue, and the clothes are not demanding that a plus woman hide".
The curated collection will comprise a dress, shirt, tank top, blazer and skirt, with prices ranging from $98 to $298. Sizes will run from a US 12 to US 26.
In an interview with The New York Times this week, Dunham revealed she hoped the collaboration would challenge some stereotypes around the body-positivity movement.
“There’s so much judgment around bigger bodies and I think one of those judgments is that bigger women are stupider,” she said.
“They eat too much and don’t know how to stop. Thin women must be discerning and able to use their willpower. Bigger women must be limited in their understanding of the world, and they keep doing things that are bad for them."
Dunham said there is a perception in the fashion industry that "no one thinks plus women have a sense of humour".
"And if they do, it’s, ‘We’re going to put a watermelon on your skirt, you sassy girl!’ None of it has subtlety or true sophistication.”
She hopes the 11 Honore collaboration “sends the message that being curvy is something to celebrate, not simply handle – it’s not a problem to fix or cover up, but rather a really beautiful celebration of having a lot to give".
“It took me a long time, but I love the fact that my body tells a story of vastness, of ample-ness, of presence. And it’s mine and I’m not going to spend a lifetime apologising for it – I’m going to celebrate it in clothing that says: ‘Here I am'. ”