May 30, 2012
As Pre-Holiday 2012 collection is about to approach, let's all get to know Erzullie Icon, Karen Diokno, one more time! Here is her Erzullie Icon Interview. So fierce!
"Karen D., during the Plus Size Model Go-See for Erzullie, was the most demure model I have ever met so far. I love her professionalism and girl next door charm. The reason that we chose her as an Erzullie Icon, after she applied for it, was because she overtime, she became one of our (Berna and I) muses --- she was smart, independent, in a healthy relationship (with self and boyfriend) and of course, family --- just like what a true Erzulliesta is." --- Aries De Guzman, on why Karen Diokno became an Erzullie Icon.
Karen Chona V. Diokno
3. Before you became an icon, what was your journey as a plus size woman? What was the meaning of being ‘plus size’ to you? Why?
I have always been "curvylicious". I've been called names like "taba" and bullied at school by the "pretty girls" during college. I even get the disgusted stares as if saying "eww" and the "head to toe" look. It started when the whole school came to know that one of the popular boys is my boyfriend (we're still together!). I usually hear stuff like "bakit siya?" or " eh ang taba taba niya kaya". And of course the never ending rumor of "the other woman".. I just laugh at it quietly and sometimes I smile at them.
For me, being plus size is a great thing coz it means that the people around you now and the loved ones beside you accept every inch of you for real. They really want to be with you not just because of "how you look" but because of "who and what you are".
4. Before you were an Icon, were you already able to come into terms with your body? If yes, how did you come about accepting yourself as plus size?
Yes! I already ssssoooo accepted my body! At such a young age, I never let my physical features define who I am. From the negative comments they throw at me, I gather confidence to prove them wrong. I often contemplate alot on why they do such things to me and realized that its only because of my size and nothing else. I got to know myself and love myself and go above the society's way of thinking that "THIN IS IN". I realized that you have to truly and honestly accept and love yourself first before others can love you.So i said to myself "So what if Im fat, I have alot more to offer". And from then on harsh words, teasing and bullying never got to me, instead I just smile and say thank you, and trust me, it leaves a "shocked" look and matching "facepalm" on your enemy's face.. hihihihih!
5. What triggered you to accept yourself as a plus size woman? Why?
I don't really know because it was never an issue for me (humility aside!). But i guess I can say that my family and my boyfriends' support and acceptance of how i look and who i am made me love myself more and it really boost my confidence.
6. As an Erzullie Icon, you did some fashion projects, what was your most favorite and memorable? Why?
Ooohh! I love all the projects we did but my most favorite would have to be the EMPRESSARIO fashion show. Not just because its my first ever "model" experience but because even though we were there with "regular" models, my co-plus size models and icons rocked the show! I guessed it showed other plus size women that "yeah plus size women can also do this and WE can be part of the fashion industry!"
7. How did being an Erzullie Icon, in general, change you as a plus size woman? Did it enrich you or you just feel the same about it? How so and why?
Being an ERZULLIE ICON is a great deal for me, not only did I fulfill my dream of becoming a model but I also found a FAMILY! It made me feel that my being a PLUS SIZE has a purpose and that is to encourage others to accept their curvveyy body! Even before I was an ICON, I was already sharing and lecturing others on self love and acceptance and knowing your worth and now that I am part of this FAMILY, I can reach out to more women out there.
8. During your iconship, you have met other people who are also part of the plus size community from regular customers to people actually working on the field of the plus size fashion industry, did that change your perception of what plus size is? How and why?
Yes, it changed my perception for the better! I realized that there are alot of fun, fierce and seexxeeeyy plus size women out there and they influenced me fashion wise and personality wise as well. They inspired me to have fun with fashion and open up to people. There was one time, during a bazaar at rockwell, I saw this SEXY plus size lady in a halter top and I found myself saying "damn ang galing naman niya!She looks uber fabulous".. That's when i realized that curvveyy women can be sexier than umm "regular" women. All it takes is ATTITUDE and CONFIDENCE.
9. To you then, what is plus size? Is it about measurement or outlook? Elaborate
For me, its both! Yes plus size is a standard of measurement but its how you accept yourself and how you see yourself owning up to that measurement. As a plus size, we should accept it, love it and FLAUNT it.
10. What is your message to the plus size community, in general? What do you think is the most important thing that they should know about how they should handle their body right now?
Being a plus size woman should never be taken as a negative. We are just like other women but with a gift that most women would pay alot of money to have (you know what i mean wink* wink*!)..
But seriously, find some quiet time and think about what is good about you and what are your assets (appearance,personality, talent,intelligence etc.) ,build on that. Learn to accept your body and be happy with what GOD gave you and be thankful that he made you complete. Then maybe you too will realize that there is more to yourself than being a "PLUS SIZE" and its not such a bad thing after all.