View Full Version : ''Curves ahead'' (article)

7th September 2005, 14:11
Here is an article about plussize fashion which kind of gives a sense of progress, mixed with shortcomings.


The good news is that it recognizes how full-figure fashion is becoming more and more significant -

"Plus-size apparel sales last year rose 13.2 percent and teen plus-size rose 14.2 percent, compared with 5.6 percent for all women's clothes"

And it also recognizes that customers want more attractive and feminine styles:

"The complaints we were getting from focus groups were that the clothes are for older customers."

"We've heard from many focus groups that people in plus sizes want to dress trendy and fashionable."

Its kind of funny that they needed focus groups to tell them this, though. You would think it would be kind of obvious!

Still, the article mentions the popularity of stuff that I really like, such as "peasant skirts," and "feminine skirts" etc.

But what I find depressing is that there are still a lot of neuroses out there among the retailers about being plus. They say they want to "emphasize a vertical line," and obsess about whether pockets add, what, an extra tenth of an inch to the width of an item? Why do they still try to make everything as "vertical" and narrow as possible? Plus styles look great on curvy figures because the silhouette is NOT "vertical", not narrow, but round and curvy and full. They still seem to think "flattering" = skinny, which is nonsense.

I think their customers are way ahead of them, though, and have rejected the "vertical" look. One customer quoted in the article has this to say -

"The average person is no longer tiny," Plummer said. "They've got curves and meat on their bones."

9th September 2005, 21:30
<br>The information in the article is certainly noteworthy--especially the fact that growth in plus-size apparel is outstripping straight-size fashion by a margin of <i>three to one</i>--but it certainly indicates that many industry professionals still need to experience a turn in thinking, before the industry can achieve its full potential.

Above all, instead of being so fretful about "streamlining" clothing, plus-size retailers should realize that their priority should be to deprogram their customers from the thin-supremacist advertising of the mass media. The <i>last</i> thing that they should do is to fall prey to such outdated, thin-centric fashion myths themselves--let alone to propagate them, as some of the individuals quoted in the article seem to be doing.

The best way to make "flaws" vanish is not by "streamlining" clothing, but by helping customers realize that their figures aren't "flawed" in the first place. As Hamlet teaches us, <i>"There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so."</i> A flaw is not a flaw unless one believes it to be a flaw.

Once customers and retailers share an aesthetic <i>preference</i> for the fuller female figure, all of the supposed challenges that the plus-size industry currently faces will vanish--to be replaced by shining opportunities.

Stunning Dillard's junior-plus model; a possible contender for survey-page inclusion . . .<p><center><img src="http://www.judgmentofparis.com/forum/dillards06.jpg"></center><p>Dress by Ruby Rox.