Tuesday, 10 May 2016

Some Problems with Plus Size Fashion

that's not how this worksIn this blog I have often said “plus sizes or, as I like to call them, sizes” and “plus size models or, as I like to call them, models.” What I meant when I said that was that I look forward to a world where we don’t have to have “plus size” because stores will carry a wide range of sizes and people of all sizes will have the same options in terms of style, availability, price, and quality; and, that I look forward to a world where we won’t need “plus size” models because using models with a wide range of body sizes will be the norm.

What I didn’t know when I said those things, was that some people would try to skip the part where we revolutionize the fashion world and, instead, just get rid of the terms “plus size” and “plus size models”  I didn’t know that stores would try to solve the problem of size-based stigma by changing numerical sizes to flower names. I didn’t know that the discussion about plus size fashion would end up being led, not by the people who are currently least served by the industry (those above a 3x with limited income) but by the most privileged people in the space – the people who are paid to model plus size clothes, and then use the fame of being a model to insist that being called plus-size is somehow “ostracizing” to them.  This is not ok.

I was thinking about all of this when I got the amazing opportunity to write for Ravishly.com – Real Feminism for Real Life! So my first piece for them is called WTF Is Going On In Plus Size Fashion?  It includes insights from the fabulous Alysse Dalessandro, the designer behind Ready to Stare  and Yolanda Williams who created  plus-size active line Just Curves (including the ONEder suit which is my new favorite thing.) You can read the article here!

Until those who wear plus-size clothes have the same options as those who wear straight sizes (and, while we’re at it, the same purchasing power because we aren’t hired less and paid less than our thin counterparts,) that’s a conversation we need to be centering, and if someone who models plus size clothes doesn’t want to be called a plus size model, then as far as I’m concerned, they can get another job.

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