If you follow Hunter McGrady on Instagram (and over 630,000 of you do), you may have noticed how, over the past year, the model has been asking questions, sharing polls and gathering feedback on people's preferences when it comes to clothes. She may not have explained why, but the reason was revealed this week: McGrady has been working on her own fashion line with QVC. And, yes, all of that information was woven into the product.
"Little did they know they were also helping me design [in] this process," she tells Fashionista. "Everything they said I averaged out to, 'Okay this what people are looking for and this is what they want.'" That — along with a long-held vision of what she wanted her own brand to look like and a desire for certain pieces she had never been able to find in the existing market — resulted in All Worthy.
The line, which drops April 22 on QVC, is named after a hashtag McGrady started in 2016, when she shot her now-famous cover of Sports Illustrated. "I remember sitting in my little apartment thinking, 'Oh my god, 16-year-old me would have never thought that I would've been worthy of being in this position, let alone breaking that barrier of being the curviest person in Sports Illustrated,'" she says. "Then, I got to questioning why would I think that. Why was that my mindset? I came to the conclusion that we're all worthy of that — of success, of feeling beautiful, of feeling empowered and of being our best selves." She kept using it for a few years and is now segueing it into her fashion brand.
McGrady's talks with QVC began in early 2019. "I was in the process of looking for a company that really aligned with my morals and what I believed in," she explains. "Everything that I have dreamt about in a line, everything that I have wanted, QVC could make happen."
Her biggest priority, naturally, was size-inclusivity: "I wanted to make sure that it wasn't just a plus-size line, and that there were going to be sizes larger than just a 1X, 2X. I wanted to go up to a 5X because, personally, I'm really sick and tired of brands not going past a certain size." McGrady notes that QVC has been in that space for years, having first introduced XXS through 3X sizing in 1990 and having recently added 4X and 5X. (All Worthy apparel will be available in the full XXS-5X range.)
"As a plus-sized woman, I've gone through every size, from 2 to 20. And I've seen that the smaller sizes usually get the better stuff," McGrady says. With All Worthy, she "really wanted to create pieces that were different from what we already see," as well as challenge some notions about how people want to dress. She remembers telling QVC: "A lot of women want to show off their bodies, so let's make this a line where women can feel sexy."
"We definitely have items for those who are a little more modest, but we also have dresses and shirts that show off cleavage and arms," she continues, noting that she also made sure to include a few personal bucket-list items — pieces she's had trouble shopping for, like a jumpsuit or a furry coat.
McGrady brought QVC a personality to its roster that could help "bring a brand to life," according to Rachel Ungaro, Vice President of Apparel for QVC and HSN.
"Hunter brings light and positivity to everyone she connects with; she is authentic and true to herself. Those are the qualities that drew us to her," Ungaro adds. "We had the opportunity to design, for the first time, from her personal perspective and that was truly a game-changer."
QVC describes All Worthy as a line designed from a "plus-size first perspective." For McGrady, that means "taking [into] account many different body types — I certainly did not do this based on [mine]. I kept women who are maybe more top-heavy or bottom-heavy [in mind]."
"I find a lot of the designs that I have worn in the past [were not] made with a plus-sized perspective in mind, and you can tell: by the cut, by the fit," McGrady says. "There's not much thought behind it. So I really wanted to change that."
All Worthy will continue to introduce new product throughout the year. (McGrady says her team is already working on Summer 2021.) See looks from the brand's first drop in the gallery below: