When we posted the startling image of Stella Tennant on Vogue Italia’s September cover, we focused on the imitation’s crazy jewelry, most notably her oversize nose ring.
However all of you, it seems, were focused on something else: her teeny, tiny corseted waist.
“Her waist has been photoshopped into another dimension,” commented nermz345. “did you all check outside her waist???” questioned candyazzbb. “I have bracelets larger than that corset girdle body,” noted mamysmom1.
So we chatted with Vogue Italia to locate the record straight. While the cover looks extreme, it is since Tennant is channeling a very specific woman with a very unique gaze. The cover’s inspiration, Ethel Granger, had the smallest waist in (recorded) history, measuring a mere 13 inches. And she didn’t come by it naturally.
As Vogue Italia writes, Ethel’s waist was due to her husband, William Granger, who was obsessed with the thought of a wasp-waisted woman. Vogue Italia clarifies:
Before their marriage Ethel was a plain, unsophisticated twenty-three year ancient girl who wore the shapeless 1920s dresses that William despised. [...] One epochal day, when William place his arm encircling Ethel’s waist she questioned “darling, can you feel any difference?”. He could: a pair of corsets that tied Ethel into 24 inches, more or less her natural waist border. The action of Ethel’s waist modification started. Initially Ethel was satisfied with wearing a corset only during the day, however William convinced her to keep it on while sleeping.
After years of corsets, Ethel finally achieved a Guinness Textbook of Earth Records-worthy 13-inch waist, as well as a signature gaze involving a variety of facial piercings. We have an exclusive pic below, as well as more on Vogue Italia’s website.
Check outside the absolute Ethel Granger and Stella Tennant’s reenactment below and go to Vogue.it to see more.
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