Truth is, RL's model is a size 12.
Now, last I checked, size 12 is on the small side of average. According to "Just What IS an Average Woman's Size Anymore?" from WebMD:
Today, the average American woman is 5’4″, has a waist size of 34-35 inches and weighs between 140-150 lbs, with a dress size of 12-14. Fifty years ago, the average woman was 5’3-4″ with a waist size of approximately 24-25″, she weighed about 120 lbs and wore a size 8.If RL's size 12 model was 5'4, or thereabouts, she wouldn't be "plus size." She'd be "normal." But she's not; she's an imposing 6'2"!
OK. I don't know about you. And I certainly don't know about Ralph. But if I see a 6-foot tall woman who wears a size 12, I don't think "plus size." I think "statuesque." "Willowy," even.
According to a Slate article on by Julia Felsenthal on why US clothing sizes make no sense, the only measurement originally used to determine a woman's clothing size was her bust. 'Cause, you know, that's a uniform measurement across the human species.
A national commercial standard sizing system was pursued in America for the greater part of the 20th century, without any real success. In 1983, the US Department of Commerce axed the concept entirely. (Which explains how today, though I'm 10 pounds heavier, and have had a child, I still wear the same size I did while in high school -- back when Jesus was little, dinosaurs roamed the earth, and clothing manufacturers hadn't played fast and loose with the sizing charts in an effort to pander to the vanity of a population who, inexplicably, has come to believe a woman is sexy if she's a 0. Hmmmm... But that's a post for another time.)
Words exist for a reason: so we can communicate with clarity and intelligence. What I don't understand is why Ralph decided to call his lovely model "plus size" instead of just "tall." It's like calling Snooki a novelist or FOX balanced. Saying a thing doesn't make it so.