in , , , ,

LOFT Takes The Ax To Plus Sizes; That’s Not Even The First Mistake They Made

Sharing is caring!

The plus size fashion community was (and still is) up in arms over the news that LOFT will be discontinuing their extended plus size range. The news wasn’t announced in a press release or an official statement…

But hidden in an Instagram comment, in response to several of their plus size customers asking why their (already limited) plus size options seemed to de dwindling.

Here is the screenshot of LOFT’s response to Jennifer Nafziger, a plus size blogger;

LOFT getting rid of plus

The news came as a shock, to say the least. In a time when brands are finally waking up to the cold hard facts that the plus size consumer is here to stay (67%of women in the US alone wear a size 14 or over) why drop the ball this hard?

As mentioned in Vogue Business, globally, the plus-sized market is valued at over $178 billion, with projected 4.3 percent annual growth through to 2028, according to Acute Market Research.

The numbers don’t lie.

This is why we’ve seen so many brands expanding their plus size range to be more inclusive to larger sizes like we have recently seen with Athleta expanding their plus size selections and with Lane Bryant extending their size offerings to a size 40.

Button Skinny Sailor Pants
Loft Plus Sizes Collection

It is painfully clear that this decision is a major mistake, but unfortunately its not the first mistake LOFT has made with their plus sizes.

“What do you mean?” You ask? Ahh, well let us break a few of these mistakes down, according to us here at TCF:

5 Missteps & Mistakes Loft with Their Plus Size Range

Loft Plus Collection NOW in store
Loft Plus Collection

1. They Didn’t Try, or It Definitely Seemed That Way…

It is clear from the way they chose to announce they were getting rid of plus sizes, that they really didn’t put much effort or care into it.

Not having a formal press release, or even a stand alone social media post about their decision was, for many – a slap in the face. It makes it seem like their plus audience was never a true priority for them.

But even before this, we hardly saw inclusion, awareness, or marketing on the same level of their straight size fashion options. It was like, we were just… there.

It’s definitely something that fashion just can’t seem to get right about the plus size market.

2. A Very Limited (and Uninspired) Selection

LOFT Wrap Dress
The Loft Plus Size Collection

We (the plus size consumer) love fashion! And we are no longer accepting the bare minimum… especially in 2021, when we have seen proof that fashion forward plus size fashion can and does exist!

Indie plus size brands are KILLING the game right now, with only a fraction of the budget of the big name retailers (which is why we started the Cultivate Awards).

We are not settling for drab, boring patterns- which Loft only gave us. The cute options they had hardly EVER came in plus. We were often left with the “essentials” and you see how well that worked out for Ryllace, cliff notes version? They too quietly shattered the brand.

SURPRISE: We want the same selections as our size 4 friends. We want to shop right along side the straight size customers!

LOFT certainly isn’t alone in doing this. Many brands that that dip their feet into plus sizes are guilty of this practice.

Brands, please stop treating your plus size customers differently than our straight size counterparts. We are just as nuanced, layered, and multifaceted as they are and are not all one “type” of person…

3. Lazy Marketing or Not Enough Advertising…

LOFT plaid skirt
Loft Plus Collection

Taking a look at their social media, they never really embraced their loyal plus size customer base. Their posts hardly feature anyone that’s visibly plus size, even though their plus size selections were often so popular, they would sell out on a regular basis.

Where were the brand campaigns to show off their plus sizes? We know plenty of plus size influencers who would have been perfect for this kind of campaign.

When you don’t invest marketing dollars into the plus size community consistently, you are setting it up to fail. If you don’t get the word out that you have a certain product, it’s so easy to say that it was “unsuccessful.”

When brands don’t reach out to plus size media about new releases or collaborations, how is the average consumer supposed to know about it? It is not like there isn’t a market here! Plus size fashion is growing at DOUBLE the rate of straight size fashion. DOUBLE.

These brands need to realize that the plus size shopper is not their savior. You have to put in the work!

We want options but can’t shop with you if we don’t know you’re out there!

4. The Fit and Sizing Was All The Way Off

LOFT pearlized skinny jeans
Loft Plus Collection

Those of us who are plus size, are very familiar with the struggle that is figuring out sizing and fit. For example, my size varies from brand to brand – it’s to be expected since size charts can be all over the place.

But it’s another thing when you have inconsistent sizing within the brand.

To build brand loyalty, the consumer has to know what to expect and trust in the quality and fit of the clothing you sell. Having inconsistent sizing makes us less likely to take the gamble and shop with you.

Again, this isn’t an issue exclusively with LOFT, we definitely see it happen with other retailers, and they all need to get it together. When size 26s fit like 22s, you set up your consumer to not trust nor feel comfortable with shopping, especially since you’ve relegated us to shopping ONLY online…

5. The Disappointing Removal of Plus Sizes from Stores

Plus Size Fashion for Women Over 40- LOFT PLUS LEOPARD PRINT TIE WAIST SHIRTDRESS
Loft Plus

The writing is always on the wall whenever retailers remove plus from their brick-and-mortar stores. It’s incredibly insulting, and it sends the message loud and clear that you don’t want fat people in your stores.

That’s never okay.

Also? It is such a missed opportunity when relative competition has been bought out and closed up, like Avenue and Catherines! But when you also have major brands like Old Navy and Athleta making a bigger stake in serving the plus size consumer offline and online, this move from LOFT makes no sense.

When you remove options from us, and you are limiting access to clothing for so many. Not everyone can shop online; some folks rely on in-person shopping to get their clothing.

Finding plus sizes in store shouldn’t be a luxury. It should be a given!

Now What?

plus size fashion for 40 and over
Loft Plus Collection

In response to LOFT’s decision to get rid of their plus sizes, Aymie Rondeau, founder of The Curvy Shop, started a petition for LOFT to reverse their decision and keep plus sizes.

The petition is currently at near 400 signatures, and counting.

We asked her what she felt about this entire ordeal, and LOFT’s hasty decision to elimate plus,

Blaming the pandemic on having to discontinue the line doesn’t add up to me. Their plus sized pieces have been constantly selling out over the last year.

They also weren’t sold in stores (or only in very few stores), so would not have been impacted by store or mall closures. Whereas straight-sized clothing would cost a lot more with selling it both online and in stores.

Maybe if they gave up some shelf space to plus sizes in their stores, and openly welcomed plus-sized customers to their retail environments, their financial performance would improve.

The stats don’t lie that plus-sized clothing is outperforming straight-sized clothing.

Aymie Rondeau
The Loft Plus Size Collection
The Loft Plus Size Collection

Aymie’s sentiments echo those of the hundreds of disapointed plus size shoppers in the comment section where this all began.

As for Loft’s response… we reached out several times for comment have yet to hear back. We will be sure to update this post if and when they respond to us, as well as give you any updates, as they come!

What do you think of LOFT discontinuing their plus size range? Did you shop their line? Where you even aware that they carried plus sizes?

Please let us know your thoughts and feelings in the comments!

Sharing is caring!

Written by Mayra Mejia

Mayra Mejia (She/Her) is a fat-positive, queer Salvadoran-American editor, writer, activist, and content creator. Passionate about fostering strong and inclusive body positive spaces, she founded PLUSH DMV, a DC-based fat-positive community.

What do you think?

35 Comments

Leave a Reply
  1. If Loft wants my business, they have to court my dollar with better quality and style, like they do S-XL sizes. I’ll wait.
    Your article is spot on! I learned how to sew to make garments in the fabrics I wanted. I hate to sew. I’m ready to pay good money for quality readymade clothes. So retailers cheap out on the clothes I want to buy or dismiss me entirely? It’s really frustrating. Thank you for your activism!

      • It’s a growing trend in the department stores and these high-end stores and some of the lower stores too forever 21 used to have such a big selection and the bottom of their store in Peabody Mass now they moved to the back of the store and area that’s about size of a closet it seems Nordstrom’s refuses to sell plus size in their store our money is just as good as everybody else is just saying and you have torrids who price gouges and the cost of the clothing in the store is so outrageous that you spend $50 for a t-shirt just saying it feels like body shaming and it feels prejudice show about people who are plus size I’m just saying our money is just as good as everybody else’s and we know how to spend it and we awesome how to dress we don’t want to dress like a shower curtain

  2. LOFT…another pretentious outfitter of the 0-12 set that can’t see beyond their narrow-minded vision of what works for the goose is just that…the gander is where it’s at, and plus size is here to stay. I wouldn’t give them the satisfaction of a petition. Instead, opting to put my time, energy and money into more real designers, manufacturers, retailers who support me and my style. They are the ones who will be “disappointed” in the end.

    • It seems to be a trend with a lot of stores where they don’t want to sell plus size in this stores it’s almost like they’re ashamed for us to come in their store and ruin their image I used to shop at forever 21 who had a big selection of stuff and recently went in there to find that they had moved there plus size to the back of the store in a little closet area then I find out Nordstrom’s does not even sell plus size in their store and if you look online it’s very limited and not to mention the fact that they’re not in tune with what people actually wear now it is unless they want to wear a shower curtain then if you go into Torrance there a plus size specialty store and their prices are so outrageous that you pay $50 for one t-shirt it’s a shame that we’re being discriminated against because of our body shape it’s sad because our money is just as good as anybody else’s to walk into a store and purchase clothes if not we’d like to spend more money than most bring back the plus size fashions just like everybody else’s I don’t want to wear a shower curtain and I want to go into a store and buy my clothes not buy them online I want to see and touch what I’m buying shame on them and they’re losing so much money this way

  3. I didn’t even know that they carried plus sizes. I have money to spend and there are not that many clothes for me to buy. The Loft should stay with their fat phobic stance and let other companies make cool plus sized clothes in nice fabrics. We deserve space in stores and we deserve representation in the marketing. I WANT TO SPEND MY MONEY ON BEAUTIFUL CLOTHES THAT FIT ME!

  4. I had no idea Loft carried plus sizes. I wish I’d known. Since we are the majority, maybe we need to change the nomenclature. Instead of calling us ‘plus’, we should be calling the other sizes ‘minus’.

    • This – I bought things from them – probably have a few still in my closet – but the fabrics weren’t great, often didn’t hold up to wear and tear, and the fit was off on nearly every thing. I kept hoping they would get better with time, but not so much…

  5. Lofts sizing on ALL of their clothing inconsistent, not just plus sizing.

    Petite clothing also decreasing selection.

    Loft used to be my go to, but due to a decline in quality and selection, it’s not anymore.

    I will be surprised if they are in business in a few years.

  6. I understand the disappointment with one less option in plus fashion. I enjoyed their plus clothing. While it wasn’t always the apex of quality, it made it possible for me to construct a professional wardrobe that wasn’t stuffy without going broke.

    That said, Loft and their parent company had serious financial difficulties in 2020 and are probably trying not to have to shutter stores and stay afloat. If they have to streamline their business to stay operational and keep their employees paid by having a more narrow range of sizes and options, I can’t entirely fault them. I’ve always had good experiences with them and I imagine if they can rebuild to the point where they feel comfortable expanding options again, they will – especially with the response they are receiving.

    • It’s a growing trend in the department stores and these high-end stores and some of the lower stores too forever 21 used to have such a big selection and the bottom of their store in Peabody Mass now they moved to the back of the store and area that’s about size of a closet it seems Nordstrom’s refuses to sell plus size in their store our money is just as good as everybody else is just saying and you have torrids who price gouges and the cost of the clothing in the store is so outrageous that you spend $50 for a t-shirt just saying it feels like body shaming and it feels prejudice show about people who are plus size I’m just saying our money is just as good as everybody else’s and we know how to spend it and we awesome how to dress we don’t want to dress like a shower curtain

  7. To be honest, I LOVED the Loft Plus collection, and definitely upgraded my professional attire accordingly. But I’ve noticed that I was getting PLUS targeted email advertisements any more, only straight sized, for the last year…definitely in the midst of the pandemic. While I enjoyed and will continue to enjoy my purchases, I can’t beg to be seen. I’ve spent too much money to beg. I unsubscribed to their emails this morning. Bye Loft, it was fun while it lasted.

  8. I decided a while ago, if I can’t try on your clothes, or if you don’t have a liberal (free) shipping and return policy, your line isn’t for me. I’m not paying to ship back something because you don’t bother to make it available to me in your store. If you don’t want my considerable dollars, I don’t want your clothes. Universal Standard lets you try their clothes in your home for free. You keep what you want and send back what you don’t). It costs me nothing but time. The Loft never wanted us. Why are we begging them to come back?

    • Absolutely! I’m tired of rewarding these sloppy efforts at plus-size clothing with my business or loyalty. I’ve subscribed to LOFT’s mailing list for years waiting for them to “wow” me with something. It never happened. There were a lot of basic fit and flare dresses I already own an abundance of and dippy floral prints I never asked for and am tired of looking at. With this news, I plan to “unsubscribe” and move on.

  9. I had NO idea that Loft even had plus sizes. This article is SPOT ON to the problems at Loft and other stores regarding plus size clothing. Perhaps we should petition them to tell the truth about why their discontinuing the line. I don’t think I’d sign a petition for them to reverse the decision – reading this article makes me never want to give them a dime of my money. I’ll spend 4x the amount with Lafayette 148 where at least I know they have plus size. They don’t do much for marketing it – but they also don’t secretly cancel me either.

  10. Well this was stupid. This was the reason I have a LOFT credit card. However what I did notice was that the items they carried in the smaller sizes that I would have loved to purchase, they did not carry in plus. Disappointing.

  11. Wow…this is disappointing. I was excited when they started carrying plus size. They had a big initial roll out: in-store events, targeted emails, etc. and a decent selection but less and less as time went on.
    I agree, blaming it on the pandemic doesn’t add up. I’d be interested to know what percentage of their sales in the past year was from plus size customers. My guess is it was significant. So why risk losing all your plus size customers?!
    Well, their loss. Thankfully we’ve got more (not enough, as I think all brands should have extended sizes!) options these days.

  12. It seems to be a trend with a lot of stores where they don’t want to sell plus size in this stores it’s almost like they’re ashamed for us to come in their store and ruin their image I used to shop at forever 21 who had a big selection of stuff and recently went in there to find that they had moved there plus size to the back of the store in a little closet area then I find out Nordstrom’s does not even sell plus size in their store and if you look online it’s very limited and not to mention the fact that they’re not in tune with what people actually wear now it is unless they want to wear a shower curtain then if you go into Torrance there a plus size specialty store and their prices are so outrageous that you pay $50 for one t-shirt it’s a shame that we’re being discriminated against because of our body shape it’s sad because our money is just as good as anybody else’s to walk into a store and purchase clothes if not we’d like to spend more money than most bring back the plus size fashions just like everybody else’s I don’t want to wear a shower curtain and I want to go into a store and buy my clothes not buy them online I want to see and touch what I’m buying shame on them and they’re losing so much money this way

  13. I have worked for a clothing brand (which will remain nameless). I know for a fact it is not much more expensive to produce plus size garments. Where there is a demand there should be a supply. I used to voice my opinions around this topic loud and clear every opportunity I had. I think it is ridiculous that these brands continue to ignore this entire market. It is their loss in revenue . In addition to the stores like ON that removed plus sizes from their stores and only serve online, that is insane. Athleta finally woke up and is selling their wares in store to the plus size customer. I wish other brands would follow suite. I could go on about this topic all – day – long!!!
    I am so glad YOU (TCF) for what you do here on your platform. We need this voice.

  14. So Loft has decided to catapult backward in the fashion industry’s attempt to be more inclusive. The average American woman is a size 16. To use the pandemic as an excuse is disheartening and dismissive of the fact that they failed to properly market to what is a fast growing segment in retail. I choose not to patronize them again since they choose not to acknowledge my existence.
    Linda Peavy
    -founder, Cultured Curves

  15. Agree with all of this- great article! I’ll sign the petition because at the end of the day, LOFT was my go-to shop (and makes up 90% of my closet!), but even if they reverse the decision, I don’t know how often I’ll truly shop there. They’ve made it very clear that they do not care about me this past week and that’s damage that will take a long time to heal for myself and for many women.

  16. The Loft is simply not interested in serving the larger sized community. their loss – I’ll spend my dollars on some of those Indie’s and grow a small business.

  17. I’ve been buying from loft for 2 years now and I love the brand . I can’t even believe they are going to stop selling plus size cloths. This is so unbelievably wrong. Plus size women are not treated the same – almost like we’re singled out and forced to wear cloths that are not flattering or our style because no one carries good stuff for the plus community. I’m tired of not being treated fairly! I pray loft changes their minds.

  18. In 2015 I went to my local Loft store. I had lost everything in a fire and was just starting to replace my clothing. I had close to 20,000 in cash with me (insurance). I was so happy to be getting out of the 2 pair of sweats I had. At the door I was stopped by a slender young woman. “Can I help you?” coupled with the head to toe eyeball. “Yes! Can you show me where to find your size 16 Jackie jeans?”
    I will never forget ger response.
    ” We have those sizes online so people like you don’t come in here.”

  19. I’m honestly really disappointed in Loft. As a teacher, Loft clothes were perfect for the classroom. Okay, so does anyone have any other brands/stores that they can share for plus size? I shop Old Navy plus, LB, and sometimes Torrid. Any others?

  20. So disappointed. While I agree with many of the points in the article.. sizes varied from style to style ….waist too big for me while the rest fit great…shirts..shoulders and length good, but arm holes and busts too large. Hated that l had to order everything online because styles were not available to try on in stores.

    However, the pieces that I did find were great. Nice quality you don’t find anywhere in plus. Beautiful basics that work from day to night and work to play. Price point was spot on… especially for quality garments. As for advertising, I don’t think they needed to push plus, instead I loved the inclusivity of being able to shop with the same fashions as my petite friends.

    Would love to see Loft bring it all back.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

frankie tavares ftflab

Fashion To Figure Launches FTFLAB: Kicks Off With New Collection By Model Frankie Tavares

We Try Out Kohl’s FLX, Their New Inclusive & Sustainable Activewear Brand