Spending the last few weeks reading different blogs and talking it up with different people in the plus size retail industry, there were similar comments, frustrations, themes, and concerns that seemed to circulate repeatedly.
With this, I thought that given a chance, I would address these all in one fell swoop, addressing these concerns to the retail industry as a whole. So, with that, I give you my open letter to the retail industry!
My open letter to the retail industry
Dear mass retailer, high fashion magazine, haute couture designer, mainstream media, retail buyer, and all those who dare question my plus size existence:
I write you this letter to share my frustrations and concerns with you and your antics!
So, I write you as a plus size fashionista who is at her wits end with the options, perceptions, and the constant snobbery that you relegate to us fashionistas with curves!
How dare you presume that because we carry more in our bosoms, stomach, or behind that I should be ashamed! It is laughable how you assume that all I want to wear are tents, muumuus, and nasty pasty florals! But your to attempt to banish us to retail purgatory in the basements of all your department stores- next to the bathing suits at best!
How dare you attempt to steal away from me any form of fashion!
What gives you the right to dictate to me what and how I should look! What gall you have to deny me the high fashion, red carpet worthy, extremely sophisticated looks as my straight sized sister! Moreover, you secretly yank my sizes out of your stores to dictate to me that I can only shop online!
How dare you send me on an expedition to excavate and dig for treasures of Plus Size Fashion? So what is this 5’8″, size 16/18 fashionista to do when you retail buyers refuse to bring in any high- fashion, stigma shattering designers into your stores, only to attempt to blanketly size up your lines, minus the fashion?
The nerve you have!
I am a fashion snob, who will quickly drop my pennies on a Chloe satchel, don my Jimmy Choos, without a blink all the while reading the latest Vogue, Elle, and Marie Claire magazines- but to what avail?
You call yourself doing a sexy at any size edition, attempting to include us in your readership, yet in the same read, you advocate plastic surgery, and massively Photoshop the curvy women who grace your editions. Why must we wait for these editions to be included?
It only becomes condescending and patronizing.
Did you think that if you don’t cater to us that we would just shrivel up and disappear?
Well, let me tell you something.So here we are, along with the other 60% of women sporting a size 14+, and honey, we are not going anywhere! I am and have always been a woman with curves.
We have no shame about what we are working with. There are more than a few of us who love fashion! We like butt-hugging jeans. We are not afraid to show neither my arms nor my legs for that matter! Many of us crave color, cut, and quality just as much as the next fashionista.
There are so many women in addition to myself, who hunger for the latest it dress, shoes, or bag.
And guess what! I am loving and living life!
So this is my letter to you, retail industry. You can ignore me, shun me, and try your best to belittle me, but I am not going anywhere. I am here digging and searching and courting those who court me back.
This Curvy Fashionista will be amongst those who make up this 60 billion dollar forecasted industry and spend our dollars with those who acknowledge and respect my curves! (Monif C., Qristyl Frazier, Igigi, Anna Scholz, etc.)
To put it plainly:
I am Curvy. A full-figured woman who loves fashion on the outside of the high fashion sizing.
I am Confident. I have no shame with my curves. I rock them, own them, and love them.
I am Chic. Full- figured fashion addict, with a discerning eye for quality, fashion, and style.
With that, I am Curvy.Confident.Chic.
What is so unfortunate is that by the time that you realize what chance you have missed out on, you will have missed out!
Keeping it Curvy!