My name is Nozibele Duze, commonly known as “Riri” amongst my friends and family.
I am 31 years of age.
I was born and raised in Eastern Cape, eNgcobo where I spent most of my childhood and teenage years living life to the full. I then moved to Cape Town, where I pursued a job and worked there till I decided to resign from my job and move to Johannesburg to be closer to my current partner. I have been here since.
Being big is simple for me, it means being Bold and Beautiful. I have a strong personality so that oozes out, and my confidence shines.
As a young girl, I was actually skin and bones, tiny waist, tiny body, tiny everything, but as I approached my eleventh birthday I Started putting on weight and the way I looked at it, it’s a family gene, because most of my family members are big and chubby. It’s Simplicity at its best.
As a big girl, I was obviously teased a lot at school, by my peers, strangers and basically anyone who looked my way, I would cry myself to sleep, because I was young, I couldn’t handle it, nor learn how to deal with it, but as I grew up I learned to stand up for myself, with that embrace my weight. Confidence was the key thing towards accepting myself as I am.
I first saw the images of others Chubby Vogue Divas on Facebook so when Charmain approached me I was excited but skeptical at the same time. I was afraid but I came none the less with my sister to the shoot, because I could not miss out as I am a Diva Myself. I wanted to show the world that big girls can do it too and even better. That we are just as capable despite our weight. The Photo Shoot was Glamorous, with all the lights and cameras and the gorgeous garments, I was a true Diva indeed.
My advice to the other Chubby Vogue Divas out there is to love yourself, be confident, and always put yourself first above all.