One of my biggest concerns in losing so much weight was that I would go bankrupt trying to keep up with clothes for my shrinking size. I stretched a buck by signing up for Gwynnie Bee in the beginning (a clothing rental site that covers 0-plus size). That worked great, and helped stretch my clothing and my style until I was ready to purchase new things, which I didn’t want to do until my weight loss had slowed wayyyy down. Now that it finally has, I’ve been collecting items over time. The other day I saw my new favorite clothing store, Maurices, was having a 75% off summer sale. Score. Summer lasts a long time around these parts so I figured I could grab a few tops and be good to go.
I have to say, shopping is definitely a different experience now a days. I pull clothes I like, or think are cute, and I try them on and really look in the mirror to determine if I love how it looks. Color, style, fit. Once upon a time it used to be fit. The end. Does it fit. I would grab, try on, glance in the mirror because I was uncomfortable in my skin and the mirror reflected things I didn’t like to see (discomfort, sadness, and the fact that most days I felt like I was fighting a losing battle), and if it wasn’t awful, I would buy it and go. Regardless of price most of the time. Just something to cover myself. And it was expensive. Because when you’re a big girl but want quality and some sense of style, you go to Lane Bryant or Dress Barn. And let me tell you, it’s expensive.
As a smaller girl, I have found something miraculous. Sales that are actually sales. I paid an average of $6 for each top I bought during the sale. The same, or similar, “summer” items in the plus size section of the store were closer to $10-$20 a piece. On SALE. Why is that?
I used to hear all the time it was because it required more fabric, but really? Some of the “plus” sized clothes are 14 or 16. How much more fabric is that from say a 12? Soaking that in, I felt frustrated, and quite frankly a little angry for all the money I spent all those years. I felt taken advantage of. Listen, as a bigger gal I wanted to still look and feel cute/pretty. I don’t think I should have been penalized because I was an “average” sized woman. That’s right, sitting here at my current size, I absolutely embrace that the average size woman today is a 14/16. And I was a 16 for a long while before I moved up to a 22/24. And even then, I still had a desire for style and well made clothes. I don’t think it’s right that clothing companies are making an extra bunch of money off of that fact because fashion has determined that plus = MORE in general. It’s a size, not a sentence. The clothing prices feel like punishment. And it’s unfair IMHO. So, though I’m grateful it hasn’t cost me what I thought it might to re-dress my new body, I can’t help feeling defensive of my sisters in the sisterhood of curviness. I just don’t think this practice is fair. Not sure how to go about enacting a change to it…time to do some research.