You know, when you're headed to a fashion event, and you hope against hope that no one else is wearing the same as you? That Primark special, or that Zara must have, it's a major headache when deciding between shopping your wardrobe or popping out for something new!
Imagine then, just for a moment, having less than 10% (it's a guess mind) of the stores to shop at. Ha, I hear you puff, how is that even possible? There is eBay, online shopping, and charity shops galore!
There may well be, for the glorious size 14. Or the wonderful size 12. Or even the heavenly size 16. But for us fabulous fats out there, we have a struggle. We have far fewer PHYSICAL stores to touch and see and try on clothes at. I live near Newcastle. The high street has one fat friendly store now - New Look Inspire. It has about 20 pieces in it. However, the Metro Centre has an Evans, a Simply Be, and a Yours Clothing. This makes me a very lucky northerner indeed – and I’m aware of my privilege from that perspective.
We might be limited by the high street, so much so that for some the only medium for shopping is online, but that doesn’t mean we don’t look, and wander, and fondle the clothes hanging on the rails. I certainly look at the prices and wonder just how much I could buy at the cost of one dress from one of *our* stores. You see, it’s not just that fatshion is inaccessible to us in the physical form, but quite often it’s priced well out of our price range too.
Now, please don't come to me with 'Well, Weight W****ers worked for...". No. Don't. I love who I am, and what size I am. I do not, for one second, want to change that. I want to celebrate diversity and all body types, no matter the shape or size.
I was at an amazing event last month in Birmingham, called Style XL. There were about 200 amazing women there during the day. I only spotted 2 people in the same outfit. TWO! How? How did we manage this with so few retailers out there? Through sheer style and determination. Which is why, FATshion blogs for me, are more varied, more interesting. Because we have to make styling choices, keep clothes from year to year, or customise them, or wearing a dress under a skirt to create a whole new look!
Over the years of only shopping in Evans, and a little bit from DP, has taught me my STYLE. I think mainstream fashion has a lot to glean from the plus size fashion blogs, because mainstream fashion is handed to you on a plate. You can buy the complete look in one STORE! Plus size fashion hunting involves multiple websites, multiple postage costs and the headache of returning items through the post only.
Finding that perfect outfit is a struggle; looking like you’ve stepped out of a fashion magazine is a struggle. That is why plus size blogs have more meaning, more weight (no pun intended), and more to say that most mainstream fashion blogs, in my opinion.
Much love my lovelies,