Ashley Graham's career has been thriving in 2016 and it shows no signs of slowing down. She is the October 2016 cover star for ELLE Canada. On the cover which was shot by Max Abadian, Ashley is wearing a H&M hat, a MARINA RINALDI coat and a SOPHIE THEALLET FALL 2016 dress. In the issue, she talks being confident, her learning disability, her husband Justin Ervin and so much more. Continue below to see he fashion spread and to read some excerpts from her interview. For more on Ashley's feature, visit ElleCanada.com and pick up a copy on newsstand on September 12th.
Wool coat (Vivienne Westwood), velvet and mesh bodysuit (Bao Tranchi), reptile-embossed patent-leather lace-up belt (Lovesick), brass neck cuff (Aoko Su) and nine-karat-yellow-gold earring (Sarah & Sebastian)
When I was growing up, my mom always told me that I was smart even though I was called dumb in school because I have dyslexia. I was also a big girl who played sports and ate well, and she would tell me ‘You’re fit and healthy.’ I was super-insecure at the time, but it helped to hear her words. Then I moved to New York [to model] and gained a ton of weight because I wasn’t working out or eating right. I hated the woman I had become because I didn’t feel right in my own skin. I was a size 18 and I was looking for affirmation and attention in all the wrong areas. I had agents telling me I had to lose weight, and I was like, ‘Why am I allowing people to dictate my future?
On marrying her husband Justin Ervin at 22:
I was a baby! But in Nebraska, everybody is married by 22. By the time we met, I’d been travelling the world by myself [for modelling] since I was 12. I had also dated half of New York City. In other words, I had seen and done, like, a lot. And then all of a sudden I met this hot guy at church.
On her learning disability:
Being told in the fourth grade that you’re dyslexic and you’re not going to be able to read properly takes a toll on you, and it really makes you believe you’re dumb. I would always hear people say ‘Oh, thank God she’s pretty.’ I’ll say it as a joke now because I haven’t let dyslexia take over who I am.
On promoting health at any size:
I’ve been a size 12, and I thought I was so hot. But now I’m a 14 to 16, and I honestly couldn’t be happier—I’m just content. Of course, I look at my body and think ‘Oh, I want to tighten up my arms a bit, or I wish my ass was lifted higher.’ But nobody has the perfect body. There’s no such thing.
Cotton-blend shirt and wool bustier (H&M Studio Collection), nylon and elastane bra (Ashley Graham Collection for Addition Elle), embossed leather and elastic belt (Lovesick), crystal-encrusted choker (Alexis Bittar), gold-plated-sterling-silver and white-rhodium-plated-sterling-silver spiral ring and gold-plated-sterling-silver and white-rhodium-plated-sterling-silver earring (Maria Black), sterling-silver ring (Petite Grand) and sterling-silver and Swarovski-crystal ring and sterling-silver ring (Vita Fede).
Polyester and spandex dress (JLUXLABEL), nylon and elastane bra and panties (Ashley Graham Collection for Addition Elle), wool hat (H&M Studio Collection), rhodium-plated-brass earrings (Laruicci), gold-plated-sterling-silver and white-rhodium-plated-sterling-silver spiral ring and gold-plated-silver helix ring (Maria Black), sterling-silver ring (Petite Grand), 14-karat-yellow-gold ring (Sarah & Sebastian) and sterling-silver and Swarovski-crystal ring and sterling-silver ring (Vita Fede)
Wool coat (Calvin Klein Collection), nylon and elastane bodysuit (Ashley Graham Collection for Addition Elle), silk-georgette slip (Rosamosario), velvet hat (Stephen Jones), sterling-silver choker, nine-karat-yellow-gold rings and sterling-silver rings (Sarah & Sebastian) and suede and napa-leather sandals (Jimmy Choo)
Credit: ELLE Canada