It can be hard enough buying plus size clothing at times, and yet plus size retailers seem to be doing everything in their power to irritate me recently. I have actually gone online shopping on countless occasions now, ready to spend a couple of hundred, and come away empty handed because these crimes of fashion keep being committed again and again. Here are the 10 sins that plus size companies keep committing, and how irritating I find them!
I don’t think I know a fat person who hasn’t complained about sizing. In my experience, ASOS is the worst for this – they take the pattern of a straight sized garment and just increase the sizes proportionally. While it’s great that this means we get to experience some of the fun and funky clothing from the straight sized range, it doesn’t actually take into account anything other than a flat stomach and so we are left with t-shirts that end half way down our belly and pants that won’t pull up.
And on that note, am I the only person who is sick of having t-shirts that ride up and up and up? A bit of VBO is fine by me, but I prefer not to have myself actually hanging out of the bottom of my clothing. I feel like I’m constantly yanking down at my t-shirts because even oversized ones are just made too short to accommodate a stomach. All I can do, realistically, is wear my t-shirts with a high waisted skirt and let my stomach hang wild and free in secret underneath. And while it might be more socially acceptable not to be flashing my bare apron, it’s really not that comfortable when my t-shirt ends somewhere around my belly button.
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Speaking of flashing, I’m so bored of buying dresses with anything other than a high neckline and having to wear a vest top underneath because my boobs want to say hello. There’s nothing wrong with a bit of cleavage whatsoever, but when I’m working in reception and the people I’m speaking to can actually see the bottom of my bra, there’s an issue. What’s with this assumption that if your stomach is big, your boobs must be big too? I wear a GG cup so I’m not exactly small-chested yet I find myself getting fed up with dresses on a daily basis right now because they’re making me feel like the fact I’m showing everybody too much of myself tells me that my proportions are wrong. Clothes that make your body feel wrong are not welcome in my life.
I don’t feel like I even need to say anything else about cold shoulders, because Kitty summed it up so nicely. But seriously – what gives? Why don’t my shoulders deserve warmth? Are you scared my hulk arms are going to burst out of enclosed sleeves? Are you stealing fabric from the sleeves to add on to the stomach so you can make your sizes bigger? I do not understand your methods.
Yours Clothing are absolutely the worst culprit for this, and I just know you’re nodding and laughing as you read this because you get it too. Why do retailers assume that all fat people are just oversized four year olds? I really don’t need butterflies on every item of clothing I own. In fact, I don’t even like butterflies. I’m actually a bit scared of them, if you must know. And your incessant need to add them to every item of clothing on your website has forced me to put my foot down and refuse to buy anything if there’s a butterfly on it. It seems you were right – I really am an oversized four year old. So there.
I am not actually a painter, so I don’t need a smock. But thanks. I think there’s this assumption that fat people cannot wear normal t-shirts (probably because they keep making them too short…) so they’ll want to wear something oversized to mask their perceived sins. Bonus points if it has an elastic hem so it sits right under your stomach and you can pretend you’re not really fat, your smock is just billowing in the wind. Seriously though.
This makes me laugh every single time it happens. You buy a dress in a size 26, and it arrives cinched right in with a belt around the middle. The dress fits like a dream and you can’t wait to throw on that gorgeous contrasting belt that the retailers have picked out especially for you, until you pick it up and – whoops! There’s 12 inches missing off the end of it. You try to pull it round yourself and you can’t actually see both ends when it’s around your back. Thanks, retailers. Maybe eventually you will send me enough of these things to stitch them all together and make a belt that actually fits.
It’s a tale as old as time: you browse a website (okay, so a tale as old as the 1990s) and see a dress that looks stunning. You buy it, it comes home and when it arrives you realise it won’t actually even fit you despite it being in your size. That’s because the dress wasn’t made for a body like yours, it was made for the model you saw wearing it. You actually have no idea how clothing is going to look on the majority of websites because it’s always shown on a model with a flat stomach and token wide hips that make them plus size. Or worse, you see every item of clothing on one standard mannequin, pinched in at the back to hide the excess fabric.
Oh do behave. There is no such thing as ‘one size’, and this is especially true in plus size clothing. When I was straight sized I could take a ‘one size’ piece of clothing and make it work with a bit of styling and accessorising. But when it comes to plus size, every person is too different for that to even work. By ‘one size’ they mean ‘size 18’, so I just know not to even bother.
I love it when brands tell their customers they are body positive. I love it when they proudly shout from their social media rooftops that their clothing is inclusive and that all of their customers deserve to feel beautiful. I even love a cheeky hashtag, despite it being a blatant way to get customers to do your advertising on your behalf. What I don’t love, though, is brands using body positivity as nothing more than a buzzword to get clicks. If you don’t go up into the 30s in your sizing, you are not inclusive. If your memes mention dieting, you are not body positive. If you only use one body type in your advertising, you don’t believe that all of your customers deserve to feel beautiful. It’s really simple: if you don’t understand a concept, don’t use it. And definitely don’t try and manipulate it to gain more traffic to your website.
Anybody else get annoyed by plus size clothing? Let me know in the comments which failings of the fashion industry really grind your gears!