Isn’t It Time Plus-Sized Clothing Became An In-Store Commodity?By Fatime G
Fashion in the 20th century is nothing if not inclusive. The fashion industry has taken significant strides to embrace representation, from runaways to commercials to retailers. Clothing stores are one-by-one catering to the needs of plus-size women shoppers, with stores designating part of the stores to plus-size clothing. Sure, we see the representation, but let’s address the elephant in the room, shall we?
Shopping for a new piece to add to your wardrobe is not always as easy as walking into an aisle and choosing something you like. The discomfort of telling your friends you cannot shop on the same store floor with them, let alone a different part of the store, sours the shopping experience of most plus-size shoppers and understandably so. Why should plus-size clothes be in a different part of the store when in-store could work just fine. When we talk about representation, let’s make clothes that fit plus-size women and how they are represented in retail stores.
An Underserved Market
Reports show that plus-size women’s clothing is a significantly growing business estimated at $18 billion. It makes up 65% of the clothing business. Women above size 14 want to access quality and fashionable clothing at their contemporary store; that said, there is a market to tap into. While clothing businesses are introducing plus-size clothing into their lines, some retailers should do their part to stock them up in their stores both physically and online. It should not take a shopper to go to a separate section or use different online links to shop for plus-size clothing.
The question “Were these clothes made for me?” has floated in the mind of many plus-size shoppers for decades; let us hope it does not take that long for us to figure out that plus-size clothing is as much deserving to be in-store clothing. As more brands step onto the plate to cater to plus-size women’s clothing needs, we hope to have plus-size clothing not just included but also embraced in our contemporary stores.