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Ashley Graham on Her Early Days in Modeling: ‘I Would Call Myself Fat, Ugly and Disgusting’

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Ashley Graham‘s had an unstoppable year: she covered the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, launched her lingerie line at Nordstrom, starred in a body positive Lane Bryant ad and now fronts Dressbarn’s new size-inclusive “More Than a Name” campaign. But the 27-year-old star didn’t always think she would make it as a supermodel.

“I [used to] be told, ‘You’re not a cover model,'” Graham said. “I thought to myself, ‘I’ll just do catalog.’  And because I held onto that for so long I just stopped living that dream.”

She added: “Words were breaking me for a long time. I would call myself fat and ugly and disgusting. The moment that I realized, that’s not the kind of life that I want, my life changed. My career took off.”

Without any doubt, the model exudes confidence and positivity, which she is hoping to pass on to other women with Dressbarn’s new campaign and her clothing line with the brand (that includes sizes 4 to 22!), Beyond by Ashley Graham.

RELATED PHOTOS: The 10 Most Stylish Stars Right Now

Last night, the star stepped out in her own Beyond by Ashley Graham fall design to celebrate Dressbarn’s campaign in New York City. “I’m so honored. This campaign is opening up that door and letting women know that they are more than a label,” she told PeopleStyle at the event. “[They are] more than a stereotype. You can be whoever you want to be.”

Graham said she designed the dresses in her line with every type of woman in mind. “Any body type, any aesthetic of woman can wear my dresses,” she told us. “My mom was begging for every single piece of the collection. She’s a 51-year-old woman and housewife and she still is like, ‘I want everything!'”

Check out some of our favorite pieces from the collection below.

My fall dress collection Beyond by Ashley Graham sizes 4-24 available at @dressbarn! Link in my bio!

A photo posted by A S H L E Y G R A H A M (@theashleygraham) on

Plaids & pumpkin-flavored everything; we are so ready for fall. | #fallfashion #dressbarn

A photo posted by dressbarn (@dressbarn) on

What’s your favorite piece from Ashley’s line with Dressbarn? Tell us!