The problem with plus size
Is there a problem with using the phrase ‘plus size’?
I feel like I should let you know that to get me in the mood I am listening to Mika ‘big girl’ (you are beautiful).
I recently posted a question on my Facebook and Instagram page asking for feedback on the term plus size. A question I posted most innocently but one that also received heated responses, which made me think that I really ought to address it.
So let me give you some background information which may explain where my position is on the whole thing, because I too wear clothes…
I tend to wear a UK size 16, which is often the starting point of ‘plus size’ sizing. However, being a size 16 means that I have never found it too difficult to buy clothing, other than bras. I can walk into TopShop and come out with a frock or pick up a tshirt from River Island without much problem. So as much as I have some insight I can’t say I have a total understanding first hand.
When designing and building on my brand I am keen to cater for every body. Whether you are a size 2 or a size 32, 4ft6 or 6ft4, age 16 or age 76 I have the genuine belief that every single body deserves to feel beautiful. It is important to me that I can carry through some ethics into this crazy industry, and body love is an issue close to my heart.
I think I have an advantage in designing clothes for ladies over a certain size because I have experience in theatrical design where costumes are made for all body types, and also because I know the cuts and shapes I like to wear, and also the obstacles I have found with clothes shopping. Especially in regards to the downfalls of availability for great bridal and event wear.
So, I was overwhelmed with responses, and very passionate ones at that ranging from, ‘yeahhh plus size is fine by us’ to ‘why don’t you call it a human range so you don’t discriminate against bodies’. Body discrimination and presentation in fashion/media is a topic I could literally write about for days and days. This ranges from why it is easier to use very slim models in catwalk shows, to why I feel it’s important to encourage women (and men!) to embrace themselves just the way they are and also how Photoshop can be used in a positive way. Yes I said that.
I don’t want to go on too much about this, but I also want to provide you with a bit of a summary of what I found from all of your views…. You don’t want to be labelled, and hey, neither do I! But, for the purpose of my SEO and to use standard fashion lingo terminology ‘plus size’ is the way to phrase this. When I was looking for ‘bigger’ models, I knew the models I needed to search for because they call themselves plus size. It isn’t a negative phrase, but it is practical. So in conclusion I will continue to say that Rosie Red Corsetry & Couture produces bespoke clothing for all bodies with zero discrimination (no labels) but also for the purpose of Internet searches I will continue to say that I provide ‘plus size options’ (practicality).
But you, yes you reading this right now, you’re gorgeous and I could create you something truly magical…♥