Chubby Vogue Diva #34

It’s funny how it still stings a little when one calls me FAT. I’ve heard that all my life and was nurtured and groomed to dress for my body, of which I’m grateful for.

This is my story…

My name is Phaello Matitoane but known as Phaello Rain Tshabalala on social media. – that’s another story for another day. Nonetheless, I was born in Pretoria and raised in a small awesome town called Welkom in the Free State, Thabong, next to Shopong tsa Kgale. Home.

My father is a business man and mother in sales but raised by my grandmother, the queen herself. Funny thing is she always used to tell me to wear a belt for my tummy or dress properly from a very young age, this being the stage I learned to always “breath in” in an effort to make my tummy appear smaller. So with her it didn’t bother me at all because I knew she was looking out for me…she knew, she knew how cruel people can be, how words can bring a person down.

I attended primary school at Welkom Islamic school. Like being fat wasn’t bad enough, I now was in a

Muslim school which uniform added 5kg extra with all the fabric. I made it through though and actually gained good friends whom are amazing people by the way….

And then there was high school… Boy oh Boy!!!

Now I was amongst all sorts of kids, it was difficult at first to fit in as I’ve always really been a loner, and didn’t think I’d  fit in anywhere. All I was, was that “white fat girl that stays at that big white house” haha pretty funny actually. It was difficult at first because I was laughed at a lot. If it’s not my ugly head it’s my weight or my overly pale skin. But again, life has a way of throwing things at you, I made it through all of that. I later decided to be freer, confident, that’s when I joint the school choir, netball and eventually was a Deputy Head RCL at the school. Since then I developed a sense of love for myself because happiness has no size really, it’s needed and you are responsible for it. No one else.

My advice….. It’s not easy to say you love your body especially when society describes beauty as the opposite of you. I’ve come to be at peace with my body and accepted it as it is.  Yes I still breath in and yes I wear my vest to keep everything in its place.

 If you are not HAPPY with yours then change it so that you become happy.

 Im happy. Are you?






Chubby Vogue Diva #12


My name is Kamogelo Mpshe and i am 19 years old.

I am from Dobsonville, Soweto in Johannesburg

Big means for me  I loving your body the way it is. I appreciate my body.

This  is the only body  I know so I am  proud and comfortable in it. I truly I believe in myself and nothing and no one can get in my way.

I have always been big, I was never skinny, and I was not afraid to go  out there and express myself. I even  entered in  beauty pageants like Miss Campus and I was the only Chubby girl out of all the girls. The one thing I loved is that they loved and embraced me, never laughed nor teased  me throughout the competition. Yes! of cause i did not win or was the runner up ( I guess I was not skinny enough lol)

But in primary school it was different. I was always teased by the students, and for a while i used to feel sorry for myself sometimes don’t even wanter to go to school.  Then later in the years I didn’t care and I didn’t pay attention to all negative remarks because I was proud of myself and confident.

I agreed because I wanted to feel like a star, I don’t  see the point of us the Chubby ladies of being afraid of being part of beauty pageants such as Miss South Africa and being Cover Girls just like Skinny Girls. Why should skinny girls be the ones leading all Major magazines, events and pageants, Fashion Run Ways and the first ones to be considered for shoots? I want to give a message to all Chubby ladies that we can all do it despite of our weight.

Self Confidence: Its all about believing in yourself, so go out there and give it your all because this is your beautiful and sexy body, no one can own it but you.

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Chubby Vogue Diva #4

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.

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