Look: The Optical Illusion of Ashley Graham’s Figure-Hugging Gown Forces a Double Take

The SI Swimsuit model served two iconic looks at the British Fashion Awards.
Ashley Graham.

Ashley Graham.

As a trailblazer in the fashion industry and the first-ever plus-size model to be featured on the cover of American Vogue, Ashley Graham is no stranger to bold looks. Her outfit for the British Fashion Awards’ afterparty was one for the books.

Graham, a mom of three, wore a custom Sergio Castaño Peña gown with a body print design and a thigh-high slit. The dress seemed to be a draped material just sheer enough to tease a reveal of her body underneath, but it was actually just artistically-designed fabric that played a trick on the eye. The gown featured an intricate double-strap, criss-crossing, bust-revealing neckline.

“optical illusion,” Graham captioned her IG post, including a series of photos of the look. She tagged @syndicalchamber and @jimmychoo, who designed her metallic thin-strap heels.

Graham kept her hair and makeup from her red carpet appearance earlier in the night, which was just as breathtaking.

In the first photo of the carousel post, the 35-year-old posed with one hand on her hip and one on her head. In the next photo, she threw on a large maxi coat and stood in an elevator, winking with one eye and grinding her teeth.

Her look was styled by Emily Evans and her ’90s-inspired slicked-back high pony was done by Sam McKnight. Her glam was kept pretty natural by makeup artist Petros, who opted for glowy skin, a neutral lip and black winged eyeliner. Graham accessorized with a stack of necklaces and multiple diamond huggie earrings, designed by Jahan Jewelry and Rainbow K.

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Ananya Panchal


Ananya Panchal is a NYC-based Lifestyle & Trending News writer at SI Swimsuit. Before joining the Swim team, the Boston University Alum worked for culture & entertainment beats at Bustle, The San Francisco Chronicle and the TODAY Show. When Ananya is not writing or doom-scrolling on social media, she can be found playing sudoku, rewatching One Tree Hill or trying new restaurants. She's also a coffee and chocolate (separately) enthusiast.