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Ashley Graham Loves Wearing Corsets Over Clothes, Don’t @ Her

“It’s just sexy!”

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Ashley Graham in a Nili Lotan dress and Fleur du Mal corset.
Ashley Graham in a Nili Lotan dress and Fleur du Mal corset.
Photo: Raymond Hall/GC Images

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In case you haven’t noticed, Ashley Graham’s style has been really, really good lately. The supermodel’s currently hitting the promotional trail hard for her newly published memoir, A New Model, in which she chronicles her successes and struggles in the fashion industry. That’s given her the opportunity to change outfits on a near-hourly basis, and from the silky Nili Lotan slip dress she cinched with a corset (more on that in a minute) to the cream August Getty Atelier duster she paired with a $50 tank dress, each look has been better than the last.

At a Lane Bryant luncheon to celebrate Graham’s new book, I caught up with the triple threat to discuss her favorite things, her thoughts on the industry’s sizing issues, and, yes, those corsets.


Ashley Graham in an August Getty Atelier duster and dress and a Fleur du Mal corset at her book launch with Lane Bryant.
Ashley Graham in an August Getty Atelier duster and dress and a Fleur du Mal corset at her book launch with Lane Bryant.
Photo: Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Lane Bryant

You’re constantly changing clothes for your job, but how much do you actually shop?

You’re going to think I’m ridiculous, but I haven’t shopped in so long because I have an amazing stylist! [Ed. note: Graham works with Jeff K. Kim, who also dresses Joan Smalls and Michael B. Jordan.] He has my body down to a science. He brings me a bunch of clothes, we try things on, and we decide what I’m going to wear each week.

I always love denim — J Brand and Paige are my favorites, and Levi’s does really good denim jackets. And right now, I’m really into monochromatic stuff.

You’ve also been wearing corsets over shirts and dresses constantly. Why do you love that look so much?

I mean, I don’t know if I’d be wearing it if I had a 9-to-5! But it’s just a fun belt [alternative] and a nice way to dress up a look. The last few outfits I’ve worn to events have had kind of a lingerie-esque look, and to have a corset be a part of that — it’s just sexy!

You don’t have to be wearing something dressy to wear one, though. I mean, if you have a plain T-shirt and put a corset over it, it just adds a sex factor. The one I’ve been wearing all the time is by this French brand...

Fleur du Mal, right? You actually have to pre-order it now, because it sold out!

Did it?! [Laughs]

I suspect you might’ve had something to do with that. Okay, so beyond corsets, what else are you buying in bulk right now?

Black body-con dresses. Reformation makes great ones that I love for the summer.

When you do shop, do you prefer to do so in person or online?

In person, because that way I can try things on rather than having to buy three sizes.

Ashley Graham with her beloved Chanel Boy bag during New York Fashion Week in February 2017.
Ashley Graham with her beloved Chanel Boy bag during New York Fashion Week in February 2017.
Photo: Gilbert Carrasquillo/GC Images

Three?! That’s one I haven’t heard before. Blame vanity sizing, I guess.

I hate it because you never know what size you are from one brand to another. Also because brands are lying to women about what size they are.

What’s the nicest thing you’ve ever bought for yourself?

Probably my Chanel bag — the Boy bag. I got it for myself after a really big job. After I bought it, I remember thinking “Wow, that was really stupid.” But now, looking back, I’ve certainly worn it enough!

How about the most beloved item in your closet?

My grandmother’s jewelry. When she passed away I actually went through her jewelry box before my cousins could get into it, and I took everything I wanted. And I knew Grandma wouldn’t have it any other way!

She had the most simple gold chains. I love wearing them because they’re dainty and beautiful — and when I touch my neck, I’m just like, “Hey, Grandma.”

Ashley Graham’s book, A New Model: What Confidence, Beauty, and Power Really Look Like, is out now.