Ashley Graham’s long list of modeling achievements now includes a new post: first global ambassador for Knix, a size-inclusive intimates brand that’s expanding into workout gear. But Graham’s history with Knix goes back further than the rollout of her debut campaign, which was photographed during her current pregnancy.
“I think we have to start from the beginning, which was my boobs. Because I’m always on a boob journey,” Graham tells BAZAAR.com.
The story goes like this: a few years ago, Graham was hunting for her unicorn sports bra—a style that could give her control without the dreaded uniboob effect—and documenting her search on Instagram stories. She tested a white Knix sports bra with a zip-up front and crossed straps, and the rest was activewear history. “I was just blown away, because I wasn’t popping out of the top or the sides,” she says. That match led a mutual friend to introduce Graham to Knix CEO Joanna Griffiths, and the pair began collaborating. (Graham is also an investor in the brand.)
Fast forward to the present: The first phase of their team-up is Knix Active, a 30-piece collection ranging from Graham’s favorite bra in new colors to leak-proof leggings for periods and sweat. When Griffiths tells BAZAAR that Knix’s sizing is inclusive, the CEO backs it up with a size range few brands can match. Sizes start at XS and go up to XXXXL, designed to fit bra bands from 28 to 44 and cups A to H.
Graham models Knix Active in a campaign emphasizing the importance of moving on your terms, whether in a HIIT class or a walk outside. It’s the opposite of the usual activewear marketing fare, Griffiths explains, where high intensity workouts are treated as the only worthy workouts—and the casting is far from size-inclusive.
Enlisting Graham to lead a more inclusive activewear campaign is “such a big move for us as a brand, because Ashley is a ‘show’ person, not a ‘tell,’” Griffiths says. “She lives her life with integrity every single day, she shows up as exactly who she is.”
“It was so fun to be in the campaign pregnant—because this was not planned, by the way,” Graham adds. “It just so happened that I happened to get pregnant as the launch day quickly approached.”
“I think it just goes to show how versatile this collection is really for anybody at any stage of life,” Graham says of shooting the campaign while pregnant. Knix has been a wardrobe constant for the past few years, she adds: “I was wearing [Knix] when I was pregnant with Isaac, I was wearing it all through my postpartum, and now I’m wearing it again while I’m pregnant. And it molds to me, it’ll grow with me, there’s compression where I want compression and not.”
While Griffiths and Graham hinted that more performance products are due next year, the model reminds us representing Knix is about more than leak-proof leggings. It’s a chance to make an impact on a narrow-minded corner of the apparel market. “That’s where I want to be in my career right now,” Graham says. “I have been in so many different things, I’ve had so many different opportunities. But now, more than ever for myself, it’s really about making the opportunities last for a lifetime.”
From her first bra test to today’s campaign, Ashley Graham is representing a brand everyone can move in.
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