Back in May, we announced
that plus-specialty clothing store Torrid was venturing into the ever-popular celeb-collab territory with Aussie actress Rebel Wilson. Now that the Rebel Wilson for Torrid collection
is finally available, we can say that it was definitely worth the five-month wait. Inspired by Wilson’s bold personal style, the limited-edition collection is filled with options that will appeal to girls who don't want to compromise comfort for the sake of standing out, thanks to a mix of NYE-ready frocks and stretchy faux-leather pieces. Of course, Wilson's irreverence shows up in the designs, like on her “gangsta” koala T-shirt, microphone-shaped zipper pulls, and "Rebel"-emblazoned tops, hats, rings and bags — all priced between $22.50 and $98.50.
We went out to L.A. to check it out in person, and talk with Rebel about her style philosophy, self image, and her take on the plus-size market. Read on to learn more about her inaugural collection, her beauty secrets, and what you can expect for her spring collection with Torrid.
What was your inspiration behind your collection?
"Well, when you get your first clothing collection and it’s a blank canvas, they’re literally like ‘What do you want to do?’ So I brought in these large vision boards, and I had all different things cut out. I actually have a real gangsta side. I love the music — the faux-leather pants [we made] has almost a bit of Hunger Games
, bad-ass-action-girl thing going on. And then I have a very quirky side from the all-girls private school I went to — like sometimes I wear stupid fucking ribbons in my hair and shit because I had that growing up. So I think I have these weird different elements. And when I brought all the ideas to the table, the Torrid ladies were like, ‘I’m not sure how this is going to come together...’ And they said, ‘Preppy? No one is buying that.’ But it’s a combination of these things that make me! So we brought those different elements in, and it resulted in these 39 pieces.
"The next collection comes out in February, and it's got a totally different color palette. It’s all denims and whites, and there’s patches, and it's very different than what’s here today. But because I feel like, as I’m an actress, I’ve played different characters, and I like exploring different moods and different feelings. That’s what these little collections will be."
What made you decide to work with Torrid?
"I really felt that Torrid was the coolest of the plus-size brands, which might not have been a hard title for them to get, because plus-size brands have notoriously been kind of like something your older aunt would wear to a wedding. Even still! Even though over 60% of the population in my home country [Australia] and in America is a larger size, there are not many designers or companies that are catering to plus-size [people] who are trying to be cool and on-trend, as well. So my collection is deliberately youthful — not that you have to be that young to wear it, but you have to have a youthful energy."
So between Australia and America, which country do you feel treats plus-size women better?
"Definitely not Germany! [Laughs] Because when I recently did press in Germany, their first question was ‘When are you going on ze diet?’ when I was on a German radio station recently. And I was like, 'I’m not!'
"I feel very accepted in my life. I love the size I am. I still want to be healthy and I never want to encourage unhealthiness to people. You can be overweight for various reasons — mine’s probably emotional eating, but I’m not going to give myself a hard time. I just want to wear clothes and feel cool and fashionable, and there wasn’t a lot out there. I feel like this collaboration helps an underserved market, which of course, is good business strategy, as well."
What kind of advice can you give a young person who’s struggling with self image?
"I liked growing up unattractive, and not getting any interest because of my looks, because that forced me to develop a personality and skills, like being a writer, being a stand-up comic, being a business woman, going to university and getting two degrees... So I would see it as a blessing, you know?
"There’s a show I really like at the moment, called My Big Fat Fabulous Life
, I really like Whitney Thore, and she’s very endearing because she’s talking about not having any body shame. Because really, who says that really stick thin is the
hot thing? To me, just being healthy and comfortable in yourself is the really
hot thing. And my body type was the preferred body type in the 18th century — it’s probably going to come back around!"
What do you think about the controversy surrounding your age?
"I don’t even understand it! I think people said that I claimed to be another age, which I never did. I think I just stopped telling my age when I came to America, so people assumed how old I was and I guess I just never corrected some people. But you know, what is the obsession with women and their ages? And magazines writing their age immediately following their name? The fact is, when you’re an actress, you really are the age of the character you’re playing in the film. You can play older, you can play younger, and I’ve done both… There’s so much bullshit all the time, so I try not to pay attention to it. I think I eat a lot of fat, and that makes my skin look plump, which I don’t think is some beauty secret."
Some people get fillers in their face because it gets too gaunt from a lack of fat.
"Well I have natural fat in my face, from eating brownies. So I think that gives you a youthful appearance!"
People are like ‘What’s your secret?’ and you’re like ‘Brownies!’
"Well avocados is a healthy fat to eat, and I always like a bit of avocado...on tacos, that kind of thing. [Laughs]"