Monday, 3 December 2012

My kinds of plus size women

Well hello again. Hasn't it gotten cold? Time for egg nog and cozy nights by the fire reading blogs and other interesting e-media.

One thing that I came across was this article by Bethany Rutter for Huffington Post. I follow her on twitter and she speaks wise words on many things, and this article gave me food for thought. I agree with some points, but not so much with others. What is fantastic is that these conversations are happening in the media!

Bethany classifies fat women into three groups - and I agree that there are probably three main groupings when it comes to fat women and fashion, although my categories differ slightly.

For me, I think the first is the 'Fat is a phase, not a lifestyle' group. They dislike being fat and think it is a short term, unattractive and awful state.

They hide their bodies and don't engage in fashion or nice clothes, because what's the point they think? This isn't the real them, the forever them, this is just an ugly shell they are in the process of shedding. Why buy nice things if you are only going to wear them until next month when you have lost 10 pounds? And let's face it, they reason, no one fat could actually look nice could they? The tragedy is many people spend years, even their whole lives, in this state. Desperately unhappy with the way they look, hoping no one will notice they are fat and wishing that they could be thin so then they could dress they way they really want to.

The second group are sort  of in the middle of the fat acceptance road. They accept their weight to a certain point, but their bodies are still to be tolerated a little, rather than loved unreservedly. They talk about 'flaws', working their best features and embrace flattering clothes. They buy what they are told suits their shape and are guided by the opinions and prejudges of others. They hide their bumps and lumps. Skim rather than highlight. They will spend money on their appearance, but never really buying clothes that express their true personality (but oh, if they were thin, the things they could wear!).

The group that Bethany calls the "radical fats" is where I part company with her article. I don't think that being a long way down the body acceptance highway means that you have to suddenly develop a love for purple lycra or declare your radical-ness through disco pants and constant VBO (although all power to you if you want to!).

I think being truly comfortable with yourself means that you feel free to dress the way YOU want to. And live your life the same way. You don't let your weight determine your choices, fashion or otherwise.

They may not be high-fashion, they may love preppy, or minimalist, or goth or vintage or even the Yummy Mummy Boden look, and they wear it. They are comfortable in their own style and look. That is the radical act - saying this is who I am, and regardless of my weight I will be that person.

Anyway, this is what I wore today. A few years ago I wouldn't have bought this dress, not stretchy and therefore wouldn't have been worth buying when i lost 'the' weight in six months of intensive dieting...

Now that my weight has been the same for the last 5 years, and I no longer diet, I wear what I want. It's not wild, exciting or too fashion-forward. But it's me. Sometimes there is VBO, sometimes I wear sleeveless things. The world doesn't end.

Grumpy work look.
Scarf - ASOS
Dress - Simply Be
Top - H&M

Happy work look!


  1. Excellent post, and as someone who is trying to leave the first group and embrace what makes me 'me', your thoughts were a delight to read. Would love to add a link to this on my blog if you don't mind? Thanks x

    1. Glad you enjoyed it, I would be honoured to be linked :)

  2. Great post Gina, I must say it was the latter part of Bethany's article that sat awkwardly with me too. I enjoy making bold fashion choices now and then, but I don't consider myself any less radical or visible when I wear a casual not particularly outlandish or fashion forward outfit, I'm still confident, proud and fat, just not always in your face. Having said that though, I think being a strong fat women in itself is pretty rad.

  3. wow the shawl and the green sleeveless outfit looks good and it does not show any awkwardness......

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