Monday, November 05, 2012

Things I would like to exist.

I am not following up on my last post about feminism. I've gotten some private questions/comments/concerns and frankly to the people who sent them, fuck your feelings.

Here's my quick advice to the several of you who are so concerned about how much I was picking on the Nice White Ladies. Go find a woman of color who hasn't had the experiences I have for the last let's be stingy and say 20 years.

Find some naive Black girl like I was so long ago who was delighted to even be seen for a second by her White Peers. Find her.

I am not the fucking droids you are looking for.

Here's the thing I will say again (as I repeat at least monthly) I don't blog about the abstract, about theory or any shit like that. 90% of what I say about yes you Nice White Ladies comes from my direct lived experience. I don't give a shit if you took a diversity class or looked up the meaning of intersectionality. I don't give a tin shit if you think you have a handle on the meaning of word. I have a handle on my actual life which is as I've shown here over the years a continuing exercise in balancing my self preservation with the intersections of my life.

Moving on.

As I'm trying to get myself fixed up clothes wise for winter, I'm left wondering again where are the affordable plus size decent quality clothing?

I don't think they exist.

Also where are the winter appropriate things?

I'm talking about basics here.

Semi warm clothing that does not cost an arm and a leg?

First let's talk about Torrid.

Torrid is expensive, the quality is so iffy garment to garment.

Actually let me give you an example. A few years ago one of you wonderful readers bought me a pair of Dickie's pants from Torrid. When I got them they didn't fit at all, I put them away and now they fit. I don't know what that's about but here's the thing. Aside from the fact that I really like the fit now (the rise could be higher but whatever) they are really flimsy and I want to apologize to that reader who paid money for them.

After being stored, folded up and untouched I wore them once and one of the seams started coming unraveled. I know those pants were at least 50$ goddamn dollars and that is what you get.

Let's take a look at the pants I sort of want to buy. Torrid's Black Skinny jean made by Tripp. Once upon a time I was a huge Tripp lover. They used to make sturdy clothes I had no problem paying full price for. But being that these are the most affordable at the regular price of 48$ let me say this, no.

The other options run up to 100$ and frankly given their track record I would never pay that much for anything from Torrid ever. I have had too many things from cheap not expected to last tank tops to good looking slacks just disintegrate after not a lot of wear.

I won't even talk about their dismal line of thin sweaters that are also overpriced. I realize it doesn't get cold in LA but come on people really?

What are the other options.

Old Navy. Here's the thing with Old Navy and me. Most of their plus size items don't fit me properly. Those are things I need to try on but, of course Old Navy thinks it is just ever so hard to put plus sizes in stores so I can't do that.

Also for my body their straight sizing is also an enormous crapshoot. And their clothes are not warm, not very well made and don't last.

At least they are generally affordable.

Where else?

I don't even want to bother with Target. Frankly I never find plus sizes in my local Target unless they are close outs. There are so many plus size items with no size chart, a fact that I pointed out to them. After my initial email and their first response where they said of course there's size charts for everything (without a link to where I might find that) I said this:

In the case where there is no size chart and no reviews how am I supposed to buy something that is unavailable in stores? I searched at least six or seven similar plus size items and there was no size chart to be seen. As a retailer I find it incredible to believe that offering even a generalized easy to find size chart is unreasonable. Due to this I will not be shopping online Target anymore and I will be warning other consumers. 
Here is what I got back:
hello Shannon, have a size chart. You can find the link to it next to the item’s size selection window. Just click on the link and it should help you with your sizing questions. We’re sorry, but not every item has a size chart available. We carry clothes from a number of different brands, and each brand has a unique approach to sizing. If you find a clothing or shoe item without the size chart described above, you can get an idea of how clothes measure up by checking the True to Size rating under What Other People Are Saying. You can also check out product reviews to learn even more.
I haven't bought anything online from them since.

Now of course there is the burgeoning Fat Couture.

Stores such as Domino Dollhouse and JIBRI are both very nice but frankly, there is no universe in which I can spend a third to half of my budget on a single dress or other item.

Poor fatties, we are pretty shit out of luck.

And honestly as much as I love so many Domino Dollhouse designs, I don't drive. I live in a place where it will be wet, rainy and cold until March. I am out in the elements for 4-6 hours daily, yeah that's not gonna work.

What makes the situation yet more painful at least for me is that I have a very particular aesthetic.

For instance I hate wearing blue jeans. I don't care if other people do, I just don't like to myself. BUT because I am just unable to find other sturdy not paper thin pants for decent prices, I am sad to say I'm going to spend a winter in more pants I hate because I just want to be warm.

So here I am.

I could buy one pair of expensive probably not so sturdy pants I marginally like or I could (again) buy a bunch of cheaper crap, layer like hell and pray I stay somewhat warm.

So retailers.

Here is some free advice.

I'm recalling the glory days of the late 90's/early 2K when I could take 50 or even 100$ and be able to buy sturdy things like pants and winter appropriate sweaters that would last more than one wear.

I am betting that the store who figures this out will win the love of the fatties who are poor. I'm talking about well made basics. Sturdy twill bootcut pants ( HI DICKIE'S I AM LOOKING AT YOU BASTARDS), how about some things that aren't all bedazzled on the ass and otherwise tricked out all to hell (to raise the price I guess) that those of us who don't want sparkly dazzly sequins on our asses can buy?

Also let me say again to indie people who print tshirts and whatnot.

Do not tell me that a mens xxl is just as good as the babydoll cut I ask about. I'd like to support your cause/art/band/whatever BUT if I say I do not want to wear a mens shirt, don't tell me to spend 35$ on your shit only to have to cut it up.

I turn it over to you readers.

My homies tell me what you're wishing for?

I'm going to sit here cold and wearing too many clothes for comfort.

Homo Out.



Cyndi said...

When I was wearing 1x and 2x sizes my favorite place to shop was Liz Claiborne's outlet shops. There was one half a mile from my house (it moved away though) and they had the best stuff at good prices. I'm bigger in my waist than my hips/butt and their clothes actually fit me (nothing else did). Some of the clothes I wore and washed a lot and they held up. Nice styles too. But I'm not entirely sure they still exist...the brand does but it seems to be just at JC Penny now.

I like Kohls' clearance racks. They have a good women's section and the clothes are generally good quality, though there is some variation.

I've actually gotten some decent clothes at Lane Bryant (outlet mall again), though they tend towards the polyester and business-sort-of attire. At least they have bras in large sizes. I mostly only buy natural fibers.

This doesn't help you or me, but for any readers in Canada, Cotton Ginny's is nice. Even more so during their sales weeks. Cotton clothes, mostly organic, in several colors and styles. Not much variety but good basic pieces and they hold up pretty well (but several of the pants have weird sized waists).

A lot of places will have XL and XXL sizes but it's really hard to find larger than that. I think it's easier to find the XL and XXL in outlets than the regular stores that want to have "an image" (or higher rent stores). The Gap is an example.

The wish I had (and still have at a smaller size) is that clothing manufacturers would stop assuming that if you're fatter you're also taller. And please please stop assuming that all fat women are hourglass shaped. Some of us are "apples" and we don't want to wear clown pants or clothes that cut off at our waists.

I have no idea what is accessible to you where you live but hopefully some of this is useful.

Anonymous said...

Goddamn them, I brought up Duluth Trading Company,which used to have 2X pants with canvas, demin, fleece lined stuff too, with generally som decent sales, but the only 2x stuff they have right now is double knits. Now I am shit out of luck too.

Veronica said...

I've been trying to find a bathingsuit to fit my 38H rack for months and months now, and I haven't found ONE that is even remotely within my aesthetic. And I've long since realized that I can't have a prize limit when looking for something like this, so that's not a reason I'm not finding anything.

Anonymous said...

The $48 dollar pants are now on sale for $28.80.

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