Woman of the Year 2019: Lauren Chan

Lauren Chan is a Chatelaine Woman of the Year for launching a plus-size workwear line that helps all women look, and feel, professional.

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Lauren Chan

(Photo: Carter Fish, Illustration: Maia Faddoul)

When Canadian model–turned–fashion editor Lauren Chan launched her plus-size workwear brand, Henning, this fall, all the fashionable powers that be took notice. The 10-piece collection, which caters to women sizes 12 to 24, racked up rave reviews in Vogue, New York Magazine and the Globe & Mail, and for good reason. From a staple blazer to a versatile trench to a classic button-down, each piece is chic and, more importantly, actually designed to fit bigger women’s bodies. (Think buttons that don’t gape at the bust line and reinforced thigh seams.) Chan understands these needs intimately because, even though she was surrounded by luxury clothing for much of her career, she could never actually wear it. “That negatively affected my confidence, made peers perceive me as less capable and kept me on the fringes of the industry,” she says. “I wanted to wear things that made me feel as smart and as sharp as my co-workers. Moreover, I wanted to be told by fashion in general that I was welcome in the space—that I was just as valuable as everyone else.”

Meet all of our 2019 Women of the Year here.