'So twisted': Plus-size women experience major shopping injustices, says designer

Laura Kenney

Plus-size women have one major shopping gripe in common: It’s really hard to find clothing in their size. Designer Tracy Reese laid out some key reasons why during Dia&Co.’s panel on size diversity in the fashion industry, which kicked off theCURVYcon 2018. In addition to Reese, the event featured tennis star and fashion entrepreneur Venus Williams and the singer Lizzo,

“I’ve been doing this for over 30 years, and when I first started working, our sample sizes in the showroom were a size eight,” said Reese. “Over the years, it became a [size] two.”

The designer added that today’s young department store buyers don’t realize the importance of sizes that fit the bodies of all women. “You show a typical department store buyer anything over a size 2 or a 4 and she does not understand the style,” said Reese. “It’s so twisted; when we look at the average woman, she is larger than the sizes carried in department stores, by and large.”

But, according to Reese, the problem runs even deeper. “I can’t tell you how much pushback there is sometimes within the industry, from the production side, from the retail side, against expanding sizes.”

And it’s not just about production, it’s also about in-store location and stock. “Why do plus-sizes have to be sequestered in a separate area of the store?,” says Reese. “Plus sizes are only online, or in the basement, or on the top floor.”

Reese went on to suggest that plus and straight sizes “should be available in the same department,” an idea that received hearty applause.

Yahoo Lifestyle will live-stream theCURVYcon 2018 on Friday, Sept. 7, from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., and Saturday, Sept. 8, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Bookmark this link to tune in!

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