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Why the Fashion Industry is Failing Plus-Size Women

For over a year, I have had the great pleasure of working in my town’s local dress shop. I love helping a customer find the perfect dress for their occasion. What I don’t love, however, is the limited options available for plus-sized ladies. Though our store does its very best to offer different options for girls of all sizes, I can’t help but notice that the options are far more limited, and less eye catching, for curvier girls.

One major annoyance I have is that many of the plus- size dresses that are made are made by designers simply don’t have the same look as smaller sizes.

In smaller sizes, two-pieces and “sexy” dresses are abundant. Why does that need to change as the size of the dress increases? A woman who is a size 22 may want to show off her curves in a two-piece dress just as much as a woman who is a size 0. In fact, why should designers make assumptions at all of how a woman wants to show off her body? My main point is this: just because a woman needs a dress with two digits in it doesn’t mean she wants to have a dress that looks like a potato sack. Woman of all sizes should be able to have similar options, and show off as much or as little of their body as they feel comfortable.

I want to emphasize that not all designers in the fashion industry have this problem.

Many designers today are creating beautiful and unique dresses for women of all sizes.

This article is directed at the industry of designers who put plus size women on the back burner and put out options that aren’t equal to other pieces. No matter what size, picking out a dress for prom, or any event, shouldn’t be a task anyone should dread due to fear they’ll have to settle for less. For many girls today, picking a dress is a next to impossible event where decrease in self confidence and a negative body image is the norm. This is simply unacceptable.

I dream of a world where women of all body types can feel confident knowing there is something out there for them that will make them feel as beautiful and amazing as they truly are. Now, sadly, we are failing. To the designers who are creating pieces for all sizes that are unique and beautiful, I commend you. To the designers who aren’t, I ask that you broaden your horizons and take into consideration ALL body types, not just the ones society accepts as being ideal. To all women, you are beautiful, no matter your size.

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Shelby Robertson
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Shelby Robertson is a 17 year old from rural Kentucky. An aspiring doctor, Shelby enjoys reading, writing, and politics. She's a Governor's Scholar, Rogers Scholar, and attended the Governor's School for Entrepreneurs.

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