One of the main reasons I became a plus size designer was because I didn’t see many Black plus size designers in fashion. I wasn’t able to shop anywhere without feeling excluded and unappreciated. There weren’t enough designers, models, or representation for a black woman.
There has been a major shift in the fashion industry. We are now seen on the cover of major magazines, tv shows, and we are creating our own seat at the tables. We are actually the TABLES!
You see, we must acknowledge and support these Black plus size designers in the fashion space. Because they are the ones who have challenged status quos, give us the fashion that had been lacking, and have redefined what plus size fashion really looks like.
On top of everything else?
We also have to acknowledge that the growth of plus size fashion has happened off the backs of Black women.
So, being that today is the first day of Black History Month, we had to fashion our own list!
We have rounded up over 40+ indie and Black plus size designers (not retailers, brands, inclusive brands, or boutique owners, this is for another article) and Indie inclusive brands that we must support!
Indie Black Plus Size Designers & the Inclusive Lines that We Need to Give Our Dollars to and Support!
"Kenyatta believes in the power of branding and believes plus size women deserve to have their own mark in the fashion world. Bella Rene', which debuted its first high fashion collection in Spring 2006, created a contemporary signature line that debuted in September 2010. "My goal is to make Bella Rene' a lifestyle brand for plus size women. I'm a label shopper at times and I feel like plus size women should have high end labels just for them."
"Christian Omeshun was created for the ambitious, curvy woman who stops the show with her charismatic sense of style. She has an appreciation for minimalist designs that can be taken with her from season to season. Our designs are sophisticated, chic and made to be a timeless staple in your wardrobe."
"Courtney Noelle Inc. was founded at the beginning of 2014 as a fashion brand driven to empower women of all shapes and sizes. It's playful color choices, daring prints, and glamorous silhouettes are leading a new standard in plus-size design. Made in New York, the signature collection features evening wear, cocktail attire, and every day fashion air."
"Curvy Bombshells is an online clothing store for Plus Size Women. Made for the Bombshells who love to slay. Our mission is to create beautiful, vivid, quality swimwear that catches the eye. Our goal is to create apparel that not only supports your shape but also looks good on your body so that you can feel your absolute best every time you wear our clothing."
"Curvy Fox is a luxury lifestyle brand designed for the ever-changing silhouette of real women. Experience leaves much to be desired in the plus-size realm for young and sexy professional women. Founded out of necessity, Curvy Fox creator Christina Howell, translates her own personal experience of style into confidence boosting designs that provide a curve embracing fit for fashion-forward women."
"CURVYKINI is re-defining the plus sized swimwear industry by offering high quality, uniquely designed pieces that adorn the plus-sized woman's curves beautifully. We use luxury fabrication engineered to smooth and float over your gorgeous curves. Formally trained at Parsons, in NYC, Creative Director Khaaliqa Squire Levy brings a sense of sexiness, glamour, self love & freedom to the curvy woman."
"LaShawn DeAngelo Millner is a designer out of Greensboro NC, who currently resides in New York City. DeAngelo is known for his love of gowns, evening wear and menswear. If you are looking for a show stopping one of a kind piece look no further."
"DEMESTIK /pronounced domestic/ is a sustainable lifestyle brand with products ethically made on demand. Every item is crafted to fit your figure and lifestyle Our versatile and effortlessly chic designs will encourage you to discover the true feeling of self love and real happiness; clothing that enhances your confidence and welcomes compliments to you from yourself and the world."
"The Diva Kurves Collection is designed for the full figured woman, who loves fashion, looking good and showing off her confidence. These women want to look, and feel great, no matter what the occasion is. When wearing a customized design from the Diva Kurves Collection, the goal is to walk into any room and OWN it!"
"In June 2015, Kierra Sheard spearheaded a soft launch of our Fall/ Winter Collection of Eleven60. Our designer has personally designed classic and refreshing looks for the professional curvy woman that is chic, sexy, bold and eclectic.Eleven60 honors the bold and classy nature of Kierra’s inspiration, her mother and Christian legend Karen Clark Sheard— Eleven60 is the month and year that Clark-Sheard was born."
"Lorenza James by Elle Dove is a womens plus size online boutique that caters to sizes 10-26+. All of the garments we carry are hand made in the U.S.A. Our designs are fashion forward that combine comfort and style for every ones curves. Each design is sold in limited quantities to support individuality."
"Feminine Funk® is a brand built to represent the confident and free-spirited women of the world. We celebrate women fueled by self-love, self-acceptance, and self-empowerment with delightfully bold designs and great quality items."
"Besides Fashion blogging at www.flawscouture.com, the ladies of Flaws of Couture have always had a passion for apparel! Especially scarves! So they decided that they would add their own twist to the popular infinity scarf! With detailed patterns and fabric, to decadent buttons, you're sure to be a show stopper in these HANDMADE one of a kind infinity scarves! "
"Haitian-born designer Victor Glemaud launched his eponymous leisurewear collection of statement knitwear, designed for all people, genders, races, sizes and personalities, marrying comfort and style, in 2006."
"At Grass-fields we offer high quality and ethically made African inspired fashion. We create a range of modern African print dresses and clothing for women, men and kids that are all sourced and made here in the UK and Cameroon."
"Hanifa is a contemporary Ready-to-Wear apparel line for Women Without Limits. Our collections in sizes 0-20 are feminine and chic. Featuring an array of colors and textures that cater to the natural curves of a woman's physique."
"Jasmine Elder is an American fashion designer and the creator of the plus size contemporary women’s label, JIBRI. JIBRI is dedicated to creating garments for the fashion-conscious curvy woman (size 10-28)."
"Kay Dupree is a courageous space for women who are discovering how they want to represent themselves in a society where they are told to hide, coverup and be ashamed of their beautiful bodies. We provide, eduction, style, quality and comfortability with a cherished place to put your hands, “Pockets are everything”."
KIN is a fashion destination for everyday women created and designed by me, Kristine Thompson. I began my journey as a plus size blogger, creating the site TrendyCurvy.com in September of 2013. After years of doing what I love, I came to realize that I desired to do more than just provide outfit inspiration. I wanted to prove that you can truly be both trendy and curvy."
"Lavender’s Jungle, LLC is co-owned by La Krisha Joseph-Baker and Sherry Baker. We became a Limited Liability company in the state of Georgia on March 15, 2012. We are a cutting edge fashion line created with the full figured woman in mind. It is our belief that clothes should fit the woman, not the other way around."
"Love, Vera is an intimates brand that celebrates black women, black entrepreneurship, and black cultural influence. The name stems from the love that Vera maintains for others and its limitless power as a problem solver, peacemaker, and unifier. Black women make things cool, but remain outsiders to leadership and business opportunities in fashion. Love, Vera is going to change that."
"Created by the owners of Majour-Magazine.com. Shop-Majour.com is celebrated by the style conscious, trend-savvy, curvy shopper that likes to stand out! Majour has set out to become the go to brand for curvy women sizes 6-24 that crave fashion forward garments and accessories. Shop-Majour.com features unique limited edition in house designed collections."
"NAKIMULI aims to go beyond the traditions of women's fashion and explore more of the imagination, creating fashion forward garments for forward thinking young women. Inspired by color, shapes, and prints, NAKIMULI has created their own fashion revolution: one that embraces a love of self at any size, inspires sisterhood, individuality, comfort, and lots of fierceness."
"Nina Sharae is a boutique luxury swim and resort wear line dedicated to celebrating the beauty of curvy women across the world. Founded in 2015 by way of Chicago, IL; the Nina Sharae brand has been featured in your favorite fashion magazines from GQ to Vogue and even had designs featured internationally in the top fashion shows."
"We are a missy and plus size fashion brand who believes all women deserve amazing fashion. As a minority and woman lead brand we know that now more than ever the world needs more diversity in fashion. We strive for great quality and well fitting clothes in sizes Small - 5X ."
"In 2016, the desire to take the brand to the next level, Purple Diva Designs became Rene' Tyler, and her son, Chase Tyler joined the company as the Creative Director. Rene' Tyler made history again as the first Plus Size Brand to show at the prestigious Art Heart's Fashion, at LA Fashion Week, in the Fall of 2016 and Spring 2018."
"Shantress Sadá offers timeless and fashion-forward pieces, inspired by everyday beauty. My diverse line is represented by many collections, which have developed from ideas to realities throughout my career as a Fashion Designer. My goal is to create inclusive designs that each customer can adapt to freely express their own unique and wonderful style. "
"Rue107 is a New York based contemporary women’s wear lifestyle brand. With beginnings in Brooklyn, New York, our mission is to create whimsical, fun, and statement-making clothing and swimwear for women who want to express their unique personality through their wardrobe."
"Shawn Denise Designs was founded in 2014 after the creation of PaintbyShawnDenise on January 3, 2013. Founder/CEO, Shawn Denise, wanted to establish chic fashion for women, men, kids, and their home. "PaintbyShawnDenise means clothes that are custom made so way they appear painted on the body as if the body is a Kanvas. I wanted to create a brand that Curvy women could find a one of a kind piece for the perfect event, night on the town or even an everyday look."
"Opulent, Classic and Beautiful appropriately describe the Shavonne Dorsey design. Shavonne Dorsey garments are for the curvaceous, sophisticated, yet powerfully feminine woman. We only use the highest quality fabrics to beautifully drape and compliment the curvaceous woman from sizes 14 to 26. Shavonne Dorsey dresses are splendidly designed, unique, and ready-to-wear."
"Plus size women were once told to hide our curves as it wasn’t appeasing to the eye of society. We were always pushed to the back of stores in small sections filled with non-flattering clothing. This is what fueled the beginning of Sheeek By Bee. In September of 2014, Sheeek By Bee was created to consistently cultivate the fashion industry with trendy, fashion forward designs made for plus size women."
"After relocating to Atlanta, Georgia in 2006, Natarsha decided to target the underdog of the fashion industry; the Plus size market. Being considered Plus Size herself, she wanted to cater to the women that shared her desires in fashion and style. This was the seed that began the 2007 birth of T-TymeLady Couture."
"The Tamela Mann Collection is an athleisure line for women sizes 12-32 designed with the comfortability of athletic wear in mind. The line is for the everyday woman, mother, sister or aunt. We have the apparel for you - fashionable, one-of-a-kind pieces for the gym, running errands, or even for lounging around all day. Each piece that is produced has women in mind - the fabric is breathable and firm in all the right places."
"TRU DIVA DESIGNS by VERONICA L. is a plus- sized womenswear collection inspired by the beauty of "Real Curves". With a myriad of fashion for the plus sized woman, TRU DIVA is the-epitome of on trend sophistication, style, and confidence. Accentuating a woman’s contours, and creating flattering lines is only part of the designer’s recipe, her decidedly contemporary designs are characterized by an exquisite attention to detail, impeccable construction and use of rich luxurious fabrics."
"The Wendy S. Collection is about easy, uncomplicated style for women. We provide a casual chic approach to womenswear. For the woman who wants to make a statement no matter where she goes. Our designs are filled with vibrant hues, modern chic shapes, crisp whites, carefree glamour, and beachy prints."
"Founded in 2013, Z by ZEVARRA was created with the philosophy of offering the fashionable curvy woman versatility and elegance with a range of beautifully crafted styles to suit every occasion at affordable prices"
"Zelie for She is an unapologetic expression of ones authenticity and individuality. Every collection is a different story , Stories of travel, friendship, women, and empowerment of ones self. Designed and Produced in Los Angeles by designer Elann Zelie All designs are made in a limited run, making these designs that much more special!"
Available up through a size 3X.
How about this list of Black plus size designers?!
What makes this list even more impactful is how they consistently deliver on the list of things that show how a plus size brand can win with us. They give us options beyond a 3X. They showcase and boldly use visibly plus size models, and innovate, consistently.
But do not stop there… You can dig a little deeper with online resources that help you search for a variety of companies with the help of Black Wall Street, Buy From A Black Woman, and SupportBlackOwned.com.
I have always had a love for fashion. It has brought me peace and happiness throughout my life. Who else knows how to dress plus size bodies but a plus-size woman herself! While styling women and cultivating who I want to be in the fashion industry, I've learned that my passion to change the way plus size women think about clothes, to help them break all the rules and love their bodies along the way. Shop Kaydupree.com