Welcome to fall fashion – and 2013 spring fashion week. Fashion week, in fashion lingo, translates roughly to fashion month. Really, after taking in all crazy input for 3 weeks or more, it explains the short attention span everywhere else in the fashion industry.
- Among the brands premiering was Licious, by Coco, directed at plus-size women with the curvier body type. Bizarrely, there’s nothing that is available for the genuinely plus-sized on the website – all clothing stops at a limited size 14. In-betweenies might be able to work with it.
- Designers Robert Tagliapietra and Jeffrey Costello, on the other hand, told Washington Post that they want to dress everyone – including the plus size. Chicago-natives and design team Gabier and Chris Peters are also on record as willing to serve customers in all size ranges.
- Stephanie Zwicky of Blog de Big Beauty got her very own profile in the New York Times magazine!
- The Daily Mail has a profile of plus size model Robyn Lawley. What’s nagging me is that if you include vertical measurements as well as horizontal measurements in what defines “plus size” then multiple supermodels are, arguably, a very thin plus size. Fat Chic focuses mainly on the horizontal measurements.
- Another new designer to watch: Cardell J. McClam. These Caribbean designers are making me want to change course on my vacation plans and set out for the Bahamas!
- Lane Bryant wound up on Photoshop disasters this week, and this got picked up by the Huffington Post . My partner picked up on a whole other issue with the advertisement, but he would not allow me to tape or post his shirtless “Skirts are not pants!” rant.
- There’s a mother and daughter competing against each other in Miss Big Beauty UK. Oh, the loaded dynamics. Makes me want to play minesweeper.
The Business of Plus Size Clothing
- Francois Pinault, the French owner of Redcats USA – the brand behind OneStopPlus, is looking to sell the very financially stable brand.
“Critics for years have pooh-poohed PPR’s ownership of Redcats. The downmarket direct seller has made an unsexy bedmate for PPR’s Gucci Group, whose glamorous luxe brands include Bottega Veneta, Stella McCartney and Alexander McQueen. “
This speaks volumes about the wild lack of vision inherent in Gucci and related brands. They’d rather starve themselves in a dwindling market than engage in the much more sustainable plus size clothing market. The problem is not the clothing or the buyers, but the catalog shopping model – the solution is the pop-up shop. Plus size women need to try on the clothing, too – the single action that saves retailers the most money is making efforts to reduce the need for returns. I’m a very regular OneStopPlus customer, and there are things from RedCats brands I have loved; giving their core customer the attention and respect given those perceived as “upper market” would profit both sides of the transaction greatly.
- In a “go-local” move, British plus size brand JD Williams will be producing more than 100 of its clothing brands on UK soil.
- Land’s End has stepped up on its plus-size offerings, recently presenting a line reminiscent of the Limited’s plus size brand Eloquii. The brand went so far as to bring in Brittany Gibbons of Curvy Girl Guide as an advisor.
- The big divestment of stock at Fashion Bug stores has begun. The website is gone.
- Pending investigation: Newport News brand has disappeared into Spiegel. Spiegel’s plus size stock is drastically limited, mostly black separates.
- There is a movement among major clothing brands to offer plus-size clothing for children as young as age three.
Plus Size Beyond just English
“Thin and fit are the sartorial equivalents of status questions like ‘what car do you have?’ or ‘where do you live?’ Fashion designer David Abraham of the team Abraham & Thakore agrees: “India is slowly moving the America way. The rich are thin and the poor fat. If you are thin it means you have access to the best fitness and diet.”
Catch sales and discounts from Fat Chic affiliates: