67% of women are considered plus-size in the United States, a size 14 or above.
A Size 12 is also usually in that set, depending.
We are also a $20.4 billion dollar sized clothing market. (as of 2016)
I’ve had a few friends and colleagues ask me about where I get my dresses recently and I love Refinery 29, and this article by Arianna Davis struck me today.
A few thoughts and comments of note…
The term “plus-size” is now seen as old fashioned and being replaced with “curve” or “curvy” in industry-speak.
The hashtag #curvemodel #curveindustry are taking over. Many women who are size 12 haven’t ever bought a piece of “plus-sized” clothing but are seen as “shapely” and outside the regular set of sizes. Typical fashion models are a size 0 or 2 on the whole, above that size you are called an “in-between” until you get to “plus.” Plus-sized women rarely see clothing with an image even close to our actual bodies.
So, I am a curvy, (strike the word -plus-sized), Amazonian, shapely woman.
I am also “thick” which I learned in a club in Brooklyn earlier this year and that, that is a good thing.
I have been a variety of sizes in my adulthood. Currently, I’m an L/XL in the range of a 14/16 depending on the manufacturer.
I’ve been a size 10, I’ve been a 20. I shot up to a lanky 5'10 in the 6th grade with a C cup. Those Western shirts with the snaps — back in the early 80’s were not my friend. At least my Mom lets me wear a bra to school. Yes, I was on the basketball team.
I like the 67% project a ton, (all puns intended) in conjunction with R29 and Getty Images; they are offering everyone — from major magazines to independent bloggers — access to license their collection of images featuring women of the 67%.
And what blogger Gabi Gregg — @gabifresh has done for working on body-consciousness and image in our advertising and what we see as positive and perfect in the barrage of images we see daily of women.
Swimsuit shopping can be heinous (I think no matter what size you are) as I don’t know anyone who doesn’t have some issues with their body. Gabi Gregg’s collaboration with Swimsuits For All.com @swimsuitsforall has been such a positive force. Their collections are wonderful and fun and cute and have so many great options. The launch was in 2012, and many other companies have now followed suit. Sizes 4–24.
The popularity of curve model Ashley Graham @theashleygraham has also helped. In 2015 Ashley was signed to for Swimsuits For All #CurvesInBikinis campaign, and the ad was in Sports Illustrated making her the first “plus-sized” model in the magazine. The next year she was on the cover and currently has 4.8 million Instagram followers.
“THE TRUE DREAM IS FOR ANYONE TO BE ABLE TO WALK INTO ANY MALL OR STORE AND FIND THEIR SIZE IN ALL CLOTHING.” — GABI GREGG
Couldn’t agree more.
So where do I shop?
Plus-sized clothing in most department stores is matronly, frumpy, cut like a burlap sack and crap material. The stores I like that have clothes that are fun, cute, cut well and well-made are:
JCPenney.com, yes you read it right.
My Dad worked for Penney’s for 40 years, and I’m Penney brat (moving every time he got promoted which was a lot.) Many of my flowery, fitted dresses I wear come from their stores and they travel beautifully. I also love their underpinnings, slips and lingerie.
My dear friend Paula Fletcher’s clothing company — http://dumbclothing.com/. I met Paula in her shop in Seattle and 2003, and she looked at my body, said “right” (she’s English) and looked through a rack, and said, “darling, try these.” She nailed it, and that aqua ocean blue sleeveless, sparkly blouse and the boot cut black knit pants are still one of my favorite outfits I’ve ever had on my body. I still have the blouse and have ordered the pants from her ten times over. I love you for many things but for making me feel amazing within two minutes of meeting you will always be a micro-moment I cherish.
These are the solid color wrap and cut on the bias dresses I wear for work, my CBD “curvy black dress, “ and yes I just made that up. LOL. My CBD Is the one I always have with me no matter where I go. Buy a dress in two sizes off of Amazon to figure out your size, return one and then you can easily buy online all the time. They run true to size once you figure it out.
I love Macy’s for fancy dresses, something for an opening night, fancy party. I like the INC brand there as well for work. But Penney’s is cheaper. Harold Square in NYC is my favorite.
Love these stores both in California and online there are about 400 across the US. They are a bit edgy, have pin-up and rockabilly threads; they do things around superheroes and graphic t-shirts. Sizes 10–24.
LB has been around forever and is the cornerstone of the curve industry, I haven’t shopped there in a while, to be honest, but it’s great for work clothes and has a nice online selection.
This online shop opened today with super high-end, fancy luxury brands if you are into that sort of thing.
I like my curves, always have and have figured out what fits my body and what makes me feel all the things we all want to feel: confident, cute, poised, professional relaxed, sexy, comfortable, and happy depending on the day, event, time of the month or location. It may take a bit longer being curvy, but things are changing all the time. Hope that helps and that you enjoy the articles from Refinery 29 (I like their horoscopes too.).
What is your favorite brand or stores, please share in the comments. Cheers!
Thank you for giving some claps if you liked this. :)
Written by Head Maven & CEO, Heather Newman, Creative Maven
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