WMU News

Fashion guru and author returns to alma mater

Oct. 2, 2001

KALAMAZOO -- A Western Michigan University graduate recognized as a leader in the fields of self-love, self-style and self-assurance for those struggling with body image will return to campus for a series of events Oct. 5-10.

Michele Weston, author of the book "Learning Curves: Living Your Life in Full with Style" and a guest on such television shows as "Oprah," "The Today Show" and the "CBS Early Show," will be honored at a President's Performance on campus Friday, Oct. 5. A graduate of the Department of Theatre, Weston will be inducted into the department's new Alumni Academy as a distinguished alumna. The President's Performance is a special fund-raising event sponsored by the Theatre Guild and supported by WMU President Elson S. Floyd.

While on campus, Weston also will work with theatre students, make presentations to other University students and participate in another fund-raising event for the College of Fine Arts.

With the growth of the "curvy market" in clothing, there has been a call for a more inclusive understanding of people of all sizes. Weston has been on this journey herself for the past 20 years, prompting her to write her critically acclaimed inner style/motivational book. "Learning Curves," published by Crown Publishers in 2000, encourages women to explore their inner beauty and outer style, covering the bases from dressing and dating to food and fitness. The book weaves in stories of such successful full-figured women as Delta Burke and Camryn Manheim.

In addition to her book, Weston writes for magazines, has served as senior fashion editor for Mademoiselle and done special projects editing for Vanity Fair, In Style and Cosmopolitan. Butterick Patterns signed her in spring 2000 to design and develop, under the Learning Curves label, a line of women's contemporary patterns for sizes 14-32. She has worked with such design houses as Anne Klein, The Avenue and Elisabeth/Liz Claiborne as well as department stores and specialty shops. Currently, she is working on a new book about teens and body image.

Until recently, Weston was fashion and style director of Mode, the fashion magazine targeted at the 62 percent of American women who wear a size 12 and above. Weston currently is a consultant with fashion companies and a lecturer on body image and personal style. She serves on the advisory board for Dress for Success New York, a non-profit organization to help women re-entering the work force, and works with PENCIL, an educational non-profit organization in New York.

Media contact: Mark Schwerin, 616 387-8400, mark.schwerin@wmich.edu

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