My first interview: Curvy Katie!
A special WAFM post today – my very first interview!
A friend of mine, the lovely Katie Simpson of Will Somebody Read A Book Please, is in the final top ten for Curvy Kate’s Star in a Bra contest! Katie herself is a pretty awesome, super smart lady with a great feminist/sex-pozzie attitude, and sexy to boot! I wanted to know more about what this is that got her on the interwebs, and the mission behind the lingerie…
Ok – let’s jump right in! Well, to start, even though I know you, I suppose I should ask you to tell us a little about yourself first. Two sentences you don’t think I’ll cover in the questions – go!
I love books and ideas, analyzing society and human interactions, frequenting dives with my stellar friends, horses, great music, and shitty TV shows. I’m still figuring out life, but I love mine and I try to take care of it and rock its socks off every day.
Can you tell me a little about Curvy Kate? I hadn’t heard of the line before you told me about it.
Definitely! Curvy Kate is a British lingerie company that makes lingerie for the fuller-chested ladiez. D-K cup, to be exact. They’ve been in operation since 2009 but I actually hadn’t heard of them either until I saw the advertisement for the competition. I think that’s probably because they are launching in the U.S. just this year. I was an insta-fan, though! Their lingerie is flirty and beautiful and, really, I haven’t seen much like it in larger cup size lingerie.
Why is Curvy Kate so awesome/why did you want to get involved?
Curvy Kate rocks on multiple levels. First, they’re making gorgeous lingerie for women who usually don’t get it! I totally can get behind that. No one wants frump underthings. Yuck. Second, and more importantly, Curvy Kate wants to represent real women honestly and truly. Curvy Kate wants YOU to think your body is killer & be proud of it! Who doesn’t want to help people feel great about themselves? Sign me up for that!
What would your message be regarding body image?
Don’t drink the kool-aid. (I was about to launch into a whole Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test/Ken Kesey and the Merry Pranksters laced metaphor here…but I refrained, ha!) Society & the media say a lot of fucked up things about bodies. Constantly. Walking around in a city I see so many HOT, awesome babes and studmuffins every day that I can tell just don’t think that about themselves…it sucks! I just want to grab them, pull a Stacey & Clinton, and drag them into the nearest clothing store and say THIS and THIS! But, there’s a revolution brewing that talks about loving your body, about being healthy, about paying attention to what your body needs and wants and catering to that; loving yourself! Listen to THAT shiz people. It’s for real. I think Curvy Kate is a part of that.
In your experience, has there been an impact of feeling comfortable in your own skin in the boudoir behavior? How connected are these things?
Oh, totally! I didn’t really come into feeling fully comfortable in my own skin until a few years ago and I think it completely affected my sex-life. All the sudden I wasn’t shy or nervous about someone seeing me without my clothes on which obviously helps when gettin’ down! I really think sex and feeling comfortable in your own skin are a symbiotic relationship, though. Part of me beginning to feel more comfortable in my body was learning more about and becoming more comfortable with my own sexuality on a more-than-superficial level. I think as that happened I started to see my body differently, become more aware of it, and think about it differently, which led to me being more comfortable in my own skin, which led to me being more comfortable sexually, on and on. It’s a really great growth pattern!
One really empowering thing I’ve found when dancing with [my burlesque company] is being able to show other people that you can, actually, be and feel sexy in public and gain respect and admiration from others, as opposed to the shaming stigmatism that typically exists around stripping. Moreover, that these things are not separate from mind and soul, nor do they detract from those things as slut-shaming would have us believe – even when you’re using them to entertain. Your take?
Wow, I really love this question! I agree. I think, as much as I think everyone should feel great about their bodies, and bodies (and by proxy, sex) are a natural thing not something to be ashamed of, I was a little nervous when I first embarked on this journey. I didn’t want acquaintances or people who didn’t really know me anymore (old high school friends, etc.) to think badly about me or get the wrong impression. And really what I meant by “badly” was “slut.” But, contrary to my belief, the support has been really overwhelming. I attribute a lot of that to Curvy Kate’s presentation of the competition but I also think that a lot of people feel a desire to be more body-positive than we assume. There just isn’t a huge societal or media outlet to support it.
I also think that – just like anything else – if you believe in your cause it’s contagious. I love Curvy Kate’s message and I genuinely want other people to love their bodies & know that they’re beautiful.
Now, you and I are both people that consider ourselves feminists and sex-positive. We have also been real naked in real public forums. Do you think being able to be nekkid in front of people is important to feeling sexy, or being empowered in your sex life? Is that a message we’re sending?
I think being comfortable being naked in front of people is really important to your sex life. It doesn’t have to be LOTS of people, but one-on-one, definitely. And, it’s not an area we address – we always just take it back to “moves” in the bed, or creating romance. Honestly, I think there’s nothing sexier than someone who will walk around the house naked in front of me and is totally comfortable doing that. That’s not even a sexual act necessarily, but it’s the confidence that you are who you are.
I certainly hope I’m sending that message (at least the latter one) in some way by participating in Curvy Kate. Obviously, modeling lingerie and telling people to feel comfortable in their own skin is about body image with your clothes ON, too. But, underneath, it’s about sexuality! Because that’s what we’re telling women and men when we tell them their body isn’t acceptable. We’re telling them they’re unattractive and thusly undesirable sexually, or worse, that they don’t deserve sexuality or qualify as sexual beings. That really makes me sad and it’s such bullshit.
Now, back to CK. How has the Curvy Kate experience been so far? Best/Worst?
It’s been really fabulous! Like I said, I was a little nervous going into it, what people would think, how it would play out. But, it’s been so fun! Everyone I’ve met and interacted with, from contestants to Curvy Kate staffers has been excellent. I would say that the best experience has been the people; people who’ve given me support, new people I’ve met, etc. Getting my hair & makeup done wasn’t bad either! The worst…speaking on the fly! It seems I can lose my vocab. We had to do a short interview for a local news channel in NYC – I’m pretty sure I said “fun” 20 times in a 30 second spot.
You’ve also had a bit of 5-second fame, on Fox News no less. How was that?
Oh Fox News…. Haha, well my “fame” was through another contestant, but, yes. More generally, it has been cah-razy having an international marketing & PR firm behind you. Seeing my face all over the internet and in these videos, not because I put it there but because professionals are promoting me in some way. It’s totally surreal. Honestly, that’s my favorite word to describe this whole experience: surreal. In a totally rad way!
Where can readers get more information about Curvy Kate?
http://www.curvykate.com, facebook.com/curvykateusa, @curvykateusa on twitter (subtract the “usa” for British news for all you anglophiles out there!)
How can they help you with the contest?
Go vote (por moi!) & spread the word!! I’ve really been trying to do this mostly grass roots style, just by telling people and talking to them about it, so I really need other’s help to keep the word going! I’m awed by the support I’ve gotten thus far and am so grateful for every vote & virtual high-five I get!
Voting is through a facebook app (which you can add and select “Only Me” to see that you added it…if you’re uncomfortable with those things). My direct link is http://apps.facebook.com/starinabra-usa/models/160. If that link doesn’t work you can just go to the Curvy Kate USA facebook page I mentioned earlier & click through to voting that way.
A great brand with a message I can get behind. Thanks, Katie! GOOD LUCK!