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Utilitarian Fashion

Size inclusivity, thank G, is having a surge across the fashion world. More and more companies are including larger sizes in their inventory (as they should) and plus size people are able to shop with more choices than ever before.

What my 16yo self would have given to shop the stores we have today. I remember wandering into what felt like the only store available to me at the time, Lane Bryant. For the first time ever in my fat teenage life, I could pull clothing from a rack and it would fit. That feeling of belonging ran deep through my size 20 body. I knew that I had been missing out on a big part of teenage hood and it felt bad. I felt bad. I felt that I was a mistake and my body was a constantly fixable thing.

Lemme tell you, this body is not just here to diet then die. Fuuuuuck that. Through years and YEARS of self doubt and even deeper self hate, I have reached such a great place of self acceptance. Part of that is knowing it is ok to demand that people who make clothes include plus size people in the conversation.

Madewell has become one of those clothiers who has begun branching out into plus sizes. I know that the utilitarian trend is not for everyone and I myself cannot make all of it work for me, but this jumpsuit <3. This bad boy I love. I’m so into the wide, cropped leg…mainly because I think I have great ankles. It fits really well and even though I have a short torso, this feels long enough for even the longest of people. I know this jumpsuit is a slight risk because with the wrong pairings I just look ready to go fix my car, but adding the mule worked perfectly to keep it just dressy enough. It also comes in cream, but that was just too big of a risk for me. Not a fashion risk, a cleaning risk.

Photography by Gina Fippin

Madewell Wide Leg Jumpsuit: Nordstrom | Beige low heel Mules (similar): Nordstrom | Classic White Bodysuit: Good American | My most favorite earrings: Annie Costello Brown

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Rule Breaker

The fashion world is full of do’s and don’ts. There are so many, in fact, a person may as well walk out the door naked for fear of committing a fashion felony. I hate them. How is it possible to confine fashion to simple rules? To these archaic ideas that certain bodies need to wear certain things?

Something I’ve always struggled with is the stereotype that plus size people don’t deserve to take up space in fashion. How is it that the largest people don’t deserve space? It’s not bad that we are larger, I promise. Our fashion brains work the same.

11 Honore is a company that is completely changing the conversation. For so long, I’ve stood at the designer windows hoping that I could lose enough weight that I could wear what they made. But, it turns out, that is not the answer. Changing my body is not the answer. Convincing designers that there is a market for Plus Size women is the answer. And that’s exactly what 11 Honore does.

This Preen set is all the “don’ts” critics say Plus Size women should avoid. It’s form fitting, it shows some skin, and it’s matching separates with small print. It would have been such a bummer to miss out on this set just because someone somewhere made up fashion guidelines. I think it is so special.

I don’t always love to show a ton of skin in order to feel sexy and this set allows me to flirt without compromising my comfort level. The top is influenced by the cold shoulder look, but with it’s own twist. By taking the cutout down from the shoulder and onto the chest, it’s a fantastic take on the peek-a-boo slit. The skirt is very form fitting, yet isn’t uncomfortable in the least. It has a ruching on a bias that is incredibly flattering on all body types and the print on the pair is delicate, floral that works for both fall and spring. I know I will be wearing this all season.

Photography Gina Fippin

Preen Floral Top and Skirt: 11 Honore | Brushed Metal Drop Earrings: The Curated NYC | Tri Colored Sandals: Pedro Garcia