What is the Future of Plus Size Fashion?
There is none.
Every time someone asks me about the future of plus size fashion, they’re caught off guard by my answer. It’s a question that comes up often in interviews and panel discussions, and I always have the same response: there’s no future for plus size fashion… There’s just fashion.
To look ahead at the future, let’s first take a step back and examine the past. For such a long time women’s style has been arbitrarily determined by size. Those in the double-digit range have been relegated to specialty shops and furniture floors – forced to browse racks through squinted vision, trying to see the best of the worst, armed with a unique mix of desperation and imagination. Let’s just say that the options were dismal. Furthermore, while this state-of-affairs was shared by millions of women that constitute the overwhelming majority, each one individually understands the isolating feeling of being underscored as an outsider. That’s changing, and it’s great.
Every year more brands are extending their size range and entering the plus size space. Yes, it’s slow. Yes, the options are still limited by comparison. Yes, more can be done. But ultimately, it’s an indication that the fashion industry, as a whole, is moving in the right direction.
Now imagine this…
One day in the future you go shopping with your friends. Like many groups, yours is diverse in both size and style. You walk into a store, and instead of approaching the rack with dread, wondering if that top that you and your size 6 friend both like comes in your size, you walk up with confidence, knowing that size is no longer a factor. That’s the future. Women of different sizes, shopping on the same rack. No separate sections, no division.
If in five years, two years, even a year from now, we’re still talking about plus vs. straight size, then we’re not moving forward fast enough. The future is not divisive, it’s inclusive. It’s about style over size, substance over trends, and Fashion (with a capital F) applying to everyone. Let’s collectively say goodbye to plus size fashion, and hello to a new era of just fashion.
By Alex Waldman
Cofounder & CCO