Bodies. Why is there so much controversy around them. We all have them. They’re all different. But for some reason they can create so much angst for us no matter how they look.
When I was younger I struggled with loving my body the way it was, like a lot of young girls. The images we all saw of the “perfect body” never matched mine, especially when you’re born with lumps and bumps that are hard to control (or lose, which is what I wanted) Fortunately for myself, I never suffered as some women do, and thankfully I didn’t buy into other peoples thoughts about me, so it was never a big problem. But for so many others having a voluptuous body was a struggle with self acceptance
Fortunately this is finally changing in the fashion industry and we’re seeing more and more gorgeous curvaceous models appear, showing us we can all embrace the beauty of our bodies.
Boom Shankar has always embraced all body types and recently we’ve introduced the beautiful Shanaya (below) to the family as you may have noticed in our social media. Heck, if our fabulous designer Dui had it her way, we’d all wear be wearing midriff tops like they do in Indian, showing off our gorgeous tummies, no matter how small or large, or young or old. Like the saying goes “if you’ve got it, flaunt it!
For each blog I usually interview someone from the community, so this time I wanted to talk to someone with curves. Being a size 14-16 myself, I thought why not interview myself, after I’d already written the questions thinking they’d be for someone I didn’t know. It was such an interesting task to do, talking about things that made me reflect on my body and even how I feel about myself. I hope you enjoy it as much I did xx
Firstly, can you please tell the Boom community a little about yourself?
Hi, I’m Ajanta and I’m the Community Content Curator for Boom Shankar. This is the first time I’ve interviewed myself, but I thought it could be a bit of fun, so why not. I’m also a curvy woman, and always have been, so I thought it went well with the blog.
How do you feel about your body?
I love my body! But that’s now, and as you know (by the introduction) I haven’t always and have struggled throughout my life to keep weight off. I used to describe my figure as a Renaissance type because I never thought I really fitted the generic pear, hourglass, apple or rectangle.
It’s also a catch 22, as when I’m feeling “fat” I know it’s my choice at the end of the day, to make changes, but I’m a little lazy when it comes to exercise and I wouldn’t even consider going on a diet. I have Italian heritage so food and wine is life.
Fortunately I also don’t have any body ailments that effect my body, so I’m very blessed, and I understand for some it doesn’t come just down to choice. But mine does. I just choose fun over “keeping fit”.
Are other peoples perception of it important to you?
I think the older I get the less I care about what anyone else thinks of me, and that’s in all areas of my life. I’m secure with who I am and I know everything I do comes from the heart, so if you’re not out to cause harm… what do you have to lose.
I also started modelling for life drawing classes 9 months ago and it really changed me and the way I think about my body. There’s nothing to hide behind when you’re standing in front of a group naked, and although there’s a feeling of vulnerability, it’s also very empowering because you look at yourself through artists eyes. They’re not looking at the size of your butt, or the cellulite on your thighs, they’re looking at all the wonderful lines, shadows and layers they can draw.
So now I view my body more like it’s a piece of art. We only have one our soul has been given to use for this lifetime, so why not love it and enjoy it.
What’s your favourite part of your body?
Even though I’m interviewing myself, there’s other people in the room so I’m not going to say it here. Instead I’ll go with my face. It’s not something I love in photos as I hardly have any lips and my eyes close when I smile, but it makes me feel great and it’s a wonderful tool for connecting with strangers.
What’s one BOOM piece you love wearing and why?
At the moment I’m digging the Grand Flares in Queens. I love pants but haven’t worn them for years as I always felt my gut stuck out, or my bottom looked too big etc. But with these pants on I just feel like one funky mamma that wants to dance down the soul train. Maybe it’s the 1970s Afro American vibe they give off. Betty Davis (as in Miles Davis wife) would of loved them!
What’s something you would tell someone who was struggling with their body image?
Don’t buy into other peoples judgments or the stuff you see advertised. It’s not real. It doesn’t mean they’re happy. To me happiness is what is most important, and when you love your body and your mind (whatever size) joy starts leaking out of every corner of you and that stuff is infectious, just like the words Al Green sings “Love and Happiness”
Our winter collection is called ‘Kindness’…
How do you define kindness, or what’s your interpretation of kindness?
Kindness to me is respecting others around you and that includes everything, humans, animals, plants. I think once you respect, kindness comes naturally and so does love.
Is there a particular moment in kindness in your life - given, received or even observed - that stands out to you?
Wow I don’t know if I can think of just one. I’ve have so many lovely moments of kindness gifted to me, and I love giving them too. Anytime I can help, I will. Plus I’ve met so many amazing people in my life doing charitable things from the goodness of their heart, not for their ego.
What does it mean to live a big, beautiful life?
Living a big, beautiful life for me is about embracing everything that’s in my path and choosing what feels right. Surrounding myself with inspiring people who make me want to be a better person and fill my heart with love. Sharing food, wine, dancing with friends, swimming in the ocean, packing a bag and going on a spontaneous solo adventure. Gosh, there’s just so much goodness in the world and every day I feel blessed, even when things aren’t going my way exactly.
SHOP SHANAYA & AJANTA'S LOOKS!!
Centre image ~ Shanaya wears the Times Wrap Dress in City Mix which can be worn 2 ways... check out our website for more!
Centre image ~ Ajanta wears the lovely East Dress in Queens