‘Project Runway’ Winner Ashley Nell Tipton Had Gastric Bypass Surgery–Is She Still Designing Plus-Sizes?

Project Runway Season 14 winner, and plus-size designer and advocate, Ashley Nell Tipton, recently announced that she had gastric bypass surgery about a month ago. This recent revelation really surprised those who supported her crusade to change the image of plus-sized fashion. Why did she have this weight loss surgery, and will she still be designing clothing for the plus-sized market?

The 25-year-old fashion designer recently spoke to People and explained what led to her decision to get gastric bypass surgery. She explained that she has been battling depression for a while, and despite so many successes, and in the “prime time” of her life, she felt that she was “trapped” in her body. In her search for the right anti-depression medication, she went in for a general health checkup, and better understood why she was not feeling as good as she’d like.

“I went to multiple doctors to make sure that I’m taking the right anti-depression medication, and make sure that my blood pressure’s okay. I found out that my blood pressure wasn’t okay and that I had a fatty liver. All these health risks were coming up. I was like, no wonder I’m not happy, because my body is working 10 times harder to try to be healthy.”

Deciding to go the route of weight loss surgery wasn’t instant. She did a lot of research, and spoke to a doctor before taking her time to decide if this was the right choice for her. Ashley did not take this decision lightly, as this road requires a lot of commitment and discipline.

Although Tipton has been delighted that she lost 50 pounds in her first month, she confessed that this has been a rocky road. Yet, she is already seeing results and she is happy with the road she chose.

“I can see a change in my face and my chest, and I love everything about it. I continue to love every step of it.”

Now that Ashley Nell Tipton is getting slimmer and trimmer, will she continue to design plus-sized garments? At this time, the young designer intends on continuing her crusade to design for plus sizes. Yet, at the same time, she is keeping her options open. No matter what, she will be persistent in her passion for fashion.

“I’m still planning on catering to the same woman that I’ve been catering to, and if other doors open in the future, I’ll take it with an open mind. Whatever happens, if I decide to start designing in smaller sizes then so be it, but right now plus-size women and men are my focus. I’m so passionate about it that I don’t have any other plans to go anywhere else right now.”

Ashley Nell Tipton won the fourteenth season of Project Runway with the distinction of being the first designer on that show to design plus sized clothing and use plus-sized models. Yet, despite Tim Gunn’s unfavorable comments that her collection was “hideous,” Ashley Nell Tipton took her win and has really made the most with her success. She has had a line with Boutique + for JC Penney, designed patterns for Simplicity Design, and now makes plus-sized accessories for K&M Accessories.

Ashley Nell Tipton has become a plus sized icon since her Project Runway win. [Image by Joe Scarnici/Getty Images for Torrid]

Ashley Nell Tipton has become a plus-sized advocate and icon since her Project Runway Season 14 win. Just recently, she, along with other plus-sized influncers were invited to the Torrid’s Second Annual Pool Party. The #TheseCurves swimsuit promotion by Torrid is to help women feel comfortable in their own skin, especially during the dreaded bathing suit season. Swimsuits are at the top of most difficult pieces of clothing for women to feel good in, and this campaign is to encourage women feel secure in their own skin by having such influencers like Ashley Nell Tipton!

Tipton’s frothy designs featured bare midriffs and pastel colors. [Image by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for NYFW The Shows]

What are your thoughts about Ashley Nell Tipton having gastric bypass surgery?

[Featured Image by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for NYFW The Shows]

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