Make Space: Our Favorite Body Positive Bloggers on The Changing Industry Standards
As soon as we started designing sleepwear, we knew that we could play a small part in creating change in the fashion industry.
“My best friend and I are design and fashion obsessed, but we always had a hard time shopping together. When we launched sleepwear, it seemed preposterous to make clothing that my friends and staff couldn’t wear. This is just the beginning in our journey, and we will continue to develop our size range, styles and fits.” - Amy, Founder
What changes have you seen in the fashion industry that are most exciting as it relates to the treatment of plus size women by the fashion industry? How about your biggest frustrations?
The way sustainable, small designers have exploded in the plus-size space has been so exciting. Something I feel strongly about is that the plus-size customer's trust has to be earned. Everything feels so much more personal from a small-business – they're not everyone's brand, they're your brand. And they're not giving us stretchy, black, safe [clothing options]. They're giving us styles that are unique and unconventional. Printfresh is totally one of those brands in my mind.
My biggest frustration will always be big retailers not going far enough. As someone who's worked in plus-size fashion, sometimes I wish everyone could see through how lame these money-grabs are.
I have seen more companies try to step up and offer extended sizes. Some of the companies just cut the pattern larger to make an extended size but don’t actually accommodate for the real curves of the body that might come with being a plus size woman.
Who/what inspired you to become a voice for other plus size women to embrace the concept of body positivity/acceptance and advocate for more inclusive sizing/fight against fat-phobia in our society? What does body neutrality mean to you?
The phrase "be who you needed when you were younger" is a huge motivator. I couldn't fit into any of the trendy stores – Abercrombie, Hollister – when I was a tween and everything about my body was an isolating experience.
I was a Theatre major in college and I had become really disillusioned in the last few years of my degree because of how I was always expected to either shrink myself or make myself a caricature. That's when the body-positive/ fat acceptance space really captured me. And in my last semesters I realized, "Oh, this is how I'm going to do it. This is how I am going to get to be creative, and never shrink myself and give myself what I've always needed."
I was inspired to start my blog and social media when I didn’t see anyone who looked like me. I was frustrated that I was a bit larger and I wanted to wear nice clothes too but no one showed where to get them. I made it my goal to help other women feel and look great no matter their size.
What do you think is the best way that all women can support a cultural shift away from fatphobia?
"The personal is political" is the first thing that comes to mind. The cultural shift from fatphobia happens as we individually challenge our internal biases and negative self-talk. It happens when we interrogate the ways we're afforded to move through the world, and who is and isn't included in the media we consume. And the culture shifts when we have meaningful conversations with our immediate communities, our friends and families, about the little ways we uphold these structures that do not support us or the world we want to live in.
Support each other! Show that all bodies are beautiful. It doesn’t matter what size you are, your body is beautiful too! The more we see all shapes and sizes of bodies, the more we will begin to accept them.
What are some of the brands that you think are rising to the occasion when it comes to size inclusivity and body positivity?
Plus-size athletic wear is a niche I'm really excited about, just because of how unwelcoming the fitness and wellness space can be to fat folks. Girlfriend Collective, even the way Fabletics has worked with so many influencers, I think that's crucial in this space. Universal Standard's size range (00-40) excites me, because it's a brand where straight-size folks can support size-inclusion with their dollars.
Favorite recent clothing purchase?
I got a green velvet slip dress from Anthropologie (unfortunately, now sold out) which I wore on NYE with slippers that I felt particularly glamorous in!
During the holiday season, I got a stunning sequin gown with faux feather cuffs. I definitely felt cute in it!
What is your favorite go-to look? Any fashion tips you can share?
Nowadays, a high-waisted, wide leg pant, a top and a cozy cardigan is my uniform. In the summer I love the feeling of a floral midi dress, a jean jacket and white sneakers in the city.
I am a dress person through and through! Just add some accessories and you’re done. I would also say wear what fits your body right now. Don’t save things for a special occasion or wait until you lose weight.
Favorite look for staying comfy at home?
Honestly, I am wearing faux fur slippers with everything. I mean EVERYTHING. And I think I'm going to have a hard time not pairing maxi dresses with slippers post pandemic.
I love a great pair of pajamas- from Printfresh, of course! But I also love a nice loungewear set with a hoodie and jogger pants. Keeps me warm but also feeling stylish.
ABOUT THE CONTRIBUTORS:
Sean Taylor is an influencer and reality TV star best known for her advocacy on Instagram, starring in The Circle on Netflix, and walking the streets of New York City with pup Burger the French Bulldog.
We believe that brands should design with inclusive sizing in mind. Shop our collection of PJs (in sizes up to 6X) and slip into something comfy.