Other paths traveled...
out all the stops |Facing Lithuania
| Now and
Size wise -- Catherine Lippincott
By Nancy Bartosek
Lippincott's favorite color is leopard. As in leopard carpeting, leopard
upholstery. She admits that exotic spots aren't for everyone, but she
thinks they go well with her big personality. So she confidently splashed
it across the floor of her New York townhouse -- and sometimes drapes
it from her shoulders.
anyone can get away with anything (style wise) as long as they're comfortable
with it," says the New York fashion model and consultant with a penchant
for big jewelry and big hats who just happens to be a size 16. "It's just
a matter of knowing what feels right."
than done, admits Lippincott, the vivacious author of Well Rounded,
an epistle of encouragement and acceptance directed at the 47 million
"plus size" women in America. It's a mindset the once-size-24 public relations
specialist arrived at after years of believing happiness only came in
"I was living
in New York, which I adored, had a job I was crazy about, an incredibly
supportive circle of friends and was dating someone I thought was great,"
she said. "Suddenly I thought, 'Gee, I thought these things couldn't happen
unless I wore a size 6. That's when I began to realize happiness and size
are not connected.' "
So the part-time,
plus-size model slowly shed her diet mentality and focused on being, "well-rounded
in every sense of the word -- spiritually, emotionally and physically."
Last year 50,000 copies of her eight-step program to personal acceptance
spread that insight across the continent. In April, the paperback version
will hit the racks.
a real movement. It's not about being thin or fat or anywhere in between,
it's about being comfortable with what you have," she said, adding that
good health is the top physical priority. "We're really on the cusp of
acceptance of all body shapes. I'd like to open Vogue and see clothing
not only on a six, but a size 16. Just some diversity."
too surprising that Lippincott, national spokeswoman for Lane Bryant plus-size
clothiers and writer for Mode magazine, a new publication featuring large
models, is one of the movement's divas. After all, this is the ambitious
girl who headed straight to New York after finishing her degree (skipping
commencement), even though she had no job, no friends and no place to
stay. "I figured it's a city," she said. "What can it do to me?"
a PR job with a publisher, moving from there to entertainment and fashion,
spending five years as manager of Nickelodeon and Nick at Night's public
relations department. And although she admits to occasional fear about
"stupid things" like airplanes, she never shies from opportunities or
challenges, learning along her journey to "step up to the microphone."
who wears technicolor kaleidoscope glasses has taken her own advice: she
keeps in shape through a dance class, reads and travels for her mental
development and stays emotionally grounded in a relationship with an Italian
physicist who gets around on a motorcycle and in-line skates -- and just
for fun, moves every so often so she can redecorate.
promoter said she finds real satisfaction knowing that, perhaps in a very
small way, she might have opened a window in someone's mind.
that even little changes in your life reverberate from you every morning,"
she said. "If you wake up happy, feel good when you pop out of bed and
have a positive outlook, every other part of your life is going to adjust
and fall into that same pattern. It all lines up.
change your head, the rest sort of follows."