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Here’s How “Hard” It Is to Actually Design Beautiful, Stylish Clothes for Plus-Size Women
Rachel Lubitz’s avatar image By Rachel Lubitz October 02, 2015 LIKE MIC ON FACEBOOK:
It is a truth universally acknowledged that plus-size clothes are the fucking worst.

Garments are often schlumpy and without a waist. Patterns are fuzzy paisley prints in clashing colors, or just entirely black or gray. Trends are non-existent, with virtually the same unflattering silhouettes on every rack. They are just bad. Full stop.

What we want want to know is why, and what’s being done to change that.

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Mic reached out to four designers from across the country who are actually making major progress in plus-size fashion and bringing the same chic, on-trend pieces to the size 14+ set.

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How is designing for a plus-size woman different than designing for a woman who is, say, a size 2?

“Simply, it’s not,” Mallorie Carrington, who runs the online boutique SmartGlamour, told Mic via email. “I get asked this question often, and I will never not give this answer. If you know to properly grade a garment from one size to the next, then you know how to make clothes for anyone. Anyone who says it is difficult is not being honest. Women are made up of so many more measurements than just bust, waist and hip.”.

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“Fit is a major, major, major deciding factor for women,” she said. “Some women might hold their weight all on the top, and some might hold their weight all on the bottom. Once you really go past an 8 or 10, the sizing gets a bit trickier. You have to constantly look at how certain areas are designed, like the chest area or arm holes. You have to constantly adapt and adjust the measurements if needed.”.

20-year-old (!) designer Hannah Olson, whose day job consists of being junior at University of Nebraska at Omaha, runs her own custom couture boutique, Hannah Caroline Couture. Olson also stressed that there are just a few more things to consider when creating a garment that is plus-size.

“The main ways that designing and sizing for curvier women is different include considering which fabrics might work best, which silhouettes will accent curves in a tasteful way and how well the garment is able to accommodate different body types,” Olson told Mic in an email.

Here’s How “Hard” It Is to Actually Design Beautiful, Stylish Clothes for Plus-Size Women.


Does it really cost more to design and produce plus-size clothing?
Fit is one thing, but there’s also the possibility plus-size designs requiring more fabric, or more durable fabrics altogether, which could drive up cost.

Designers have used that as an excuse for not designing more inclusive pieces, or charging more for them. Old Navy came under fire last year for up-charging their plus-size jeans due to the “unique fabrics.” According to Today, size 8 jeans were going for $27, while a size 28 pair was $45. The difference sparked a Change.org petition, but it also speaks to the fact that more fabric can equal more cost.

But more importantly, there a huge market. With the average American woman’s dress size ranging from a 12 to a 14, the plus-size industry is valued at $17 billion. Cost doesn’t seem like a strong reason to not design plus-size clothing– and designers who are in the market agree.

“Designers will cite cost, which I will also debunk right now,” SmartGlamour’s Carrington said. “My set size range runs from XXS to 6X. I base my prices off of the fabric consumption for XL and 1X sizes. Not only are they in the middle of the size range and take up the mid amount of supplies, but they are also the most commonly found size of American women. It is a no-brainer and completely evens out.”.

Here’s How “Hard” It Is to Actually Design Beautiful, Stylish Clothes for Plus-Size Women.
Source: Mic/Universal Standard.
Alexandra Waldman, co-founder of new plus-size brand Universal Standard, told Mic, “There is no reason why an experienced designer can not overcome this , but my co-founder Polina and I can.”.

And as Olson points out, businesses do better if they’re best meeting customer demand– and the demand is robust enough to consider plus-size women a formidable consumer base.

“As designers, we are also entrepreneurs in charge of running profitable businesses, and businesses only profit when they figure out how to fulfill customer’s needs,” Olson said. “Being a designer needs to be less about putting our ideas out there and more about listening to what our customers need and building that into our designs as solutions.”.

“I think some of these problems are ideological,” Waldman said. “They’re masked as practical but really they aren’t. Some of the popular designers want to feature their clothes in a particular light that they think is more attractive. With this body-positive movement, I think there is going to be a change.”.

Just think back to the backlash Abercrombie faced when its CEO admitted, “We go after the cool kids. … A lot of people don’t belong in our clothes, and they can’t belong. Are we exclusionary? Absolutely.” See also: the flack Lululemon got when the press exposed its strategy to deliberately exclude plus-size shoppers.

Plus-size women are too often seen as uncool, unstylish or even not affluent enough to be worth catering to.

That change can come from activism by individuals, such as the many hashtag campaigns launched by the body-positive movement. It also comes from retailers, as with Lane Bryant’s much-heralded #PlusIsEqual campaign, which has included primetime TV ads and a live fashion show in Times Square. High-profile advocating from retailers, shoppers and professionals alike– including plus-size models– is chipping away at deeply-rooted beauty norms.

Here’s How “Hard” It Is to Actually Design Beautiful, Stylish Clothes for Plus-Size Women.
Project Runway’s runway show, 2015Source: Getty Images.
Once there’s more willingness to create clothes for plus-size women, Olson said, the process shouldn’t be rocket science.

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“I think it would be great if Beth Ditto wasn’t made international news,” Waldman said. “When we reach a point where I can go on the Internet and buy pants and skirts rather than plus-size pants or plus-size skirts.”.

That inclusivity also means changing our language.

“I hope we get rid of the word ‘plus,'” Universal Standard’s Polina Veksler told Mic. “It’s a useful term. It’s a shortcut term. But I ‘d like to see the the concept of plus not exist.”.

 

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Broad Cast Media Make Our Life Easy

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What Is Media Broadcasting?
Media broadcasting is the airing of audio and video to the public. If you enjoy listening to radio programs or watching television shows and would like to be involved in the creation of these programs, then perhaps media broadcasting is right for you.

Industry Defined

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Media broadcasting is made up of both radio and television, which are transmitted through local stations, national networks, and public organizations, such as PBS. A multitude of career paths exist within media broadcasting, ranging from behind the scenes work as a producer or engineer to more public positions, like an announcer or reporter.

Important Facts About Media Broadcasting

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Similar OccupationsFilm/Video Editor, Camera Operator, Photographer, Technical Writer, Electronics Engineering Technician
Key SkillsCommunication, computer, interpersonal, and problem-solving skills

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Picture by Vicky Matthers iconphotomedia BUCS finals at Leeds Metropolitan University, Carnegie Sport.Wednesday 20th March 2013

Work EnvironmentTypically fast-paced, full-time, and against a deadline
On-the-Job TrainingThe best way to get work in a bigger station is to gain experience by first working for smaller stations; many stations also prefer internships or college work experience
Professional CertificationFor engineers, certifications are offered through the Society of Broadcast Engineers

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Education and Training

A college degree is generally required to enter the media broadcasting field. While some positions are filled by individuals who hold a associate degrees, many positions require you to hold a bachelor’s degree. Ideally, you’ll want to select a program that offers hands-on experience in the field through opportunities with campus broadcasting stations or internships. The type of degree you’ll earn will depend on the discipline and position you wish to pursue. Professionals in this field commonly hold degrees in radio and television, engineering, or journalism.

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Radio and Television

Bachelor’s degree programs in radio and television prepare students for production positions in broadcasting, such as writer, director, producer, or editor. You can expect to learn audio and video techniques used in the studio. You might also practice writing scripts for radio and television programs. Other common coursework includes radio programming, television production, and mass communications.

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Journalism

If you want to be a news reporter in media broadcasting, you may need to earn a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Such degree programs tend to include coursework in news writing for both print publications and broadcast media.

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Engineering

Entry-level technical workers in broadcast engineering, such as equipment operators, technicians, and engineers, typically hold associate’s degrees in broadcast technology or broadcast production and engineering. These two-year programs prepare you to work backstage on cameras, editing equipment, sound boards, or program feed equipment.

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Advanced technical positions typically require bachelor’s degrees. For example, engineering directors typically need to have four-year degrees in electrical engineering, as well as extensive experience in the field. To work as computer systems administrator in broadcasting, you may need to complete a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering or computer science.

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Employment Overview

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS, http://www.bls.gov) projected an employment decrease of about 13 % for broadcast new analysts from 2012-2022; however, broadcast and sound engineering technicians and radio operators are expected to see employment growth of about 9 % during the same time frame. This growth is due in part to the continued advancement of new technologies. According to the BLS, the median annual salary earned by broadcast news analysts was $61,450 in May 2014; the same year, broadcast technicians earned a median of $36,560 annually.

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The easternmost and fourth largest of the Canary Islands is virtually treeless and relies on desalination plants for some of its water. Yet many visitors consider Lanzarote the most attractive of all the islands for the vivid shapes and contrasting colours of its volcanic landscapes.

Despite low rainfall, carefully tended crops flourish in its black volcanic soil. Locals pride themselves on the way their island has been preserved from the worst effects of tourism; there are no garish billboards, high-rise buildings or overhead cables.

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This modern hotel stands on Arrecife’s Reducto beach, a tempting stretch of soft, pale sand with coral reefs lying just offshore. The hotel has all the standard services including a reception desk open 24 hours. The restaurant has sea views and is also close to other good restaurants in the town.

LANZAROTE, COSTA TEGUISE Gran Meliá Salinas

Av Islas Canarias, Urbanización Costa Teguise, 35509. Rooms 289

A vast atrium with central water gardens and ornamental plants is the focus of this modern luxury hotel in the northern area of Costa Teguise. It has two bars and five restaurants offering a wide choice of food and drink.

A swimming pool, three tennis courts, a gym, mini-golf and a newsagent are add-ons.

 

A resort hotel popular with families in the south of Lanzarote facing Fuerteventura. It is light and cool, with split-level areas ornamented with water gardens.

 

This seven-story hotel has direct access to an attractive beach. The hotel has a good range of facilities including a dive centre and two swimming pools.

Best Lanzarote Restaurants And Bars

LANZAROTE, ARRECIFE Castillo de San José

Castillo de San José, Ctra de Puerto Nao, 35340

Puerto Nao’s converted fortress was built in 1779 by King Carlos III and restored by the Lanzarote architect César Manrique. It now houses a contemporary art gallery and a restaurant.

LANZAROTE, COSTA TEGUISE Mesón La Jordana

Centro Comercial de Lanzarote Bay, Av de los Geranios, 35509

A popular restaurant in one of Costa Teguise’s shopping centres, King Hussein of Jordan was once a customer here, where local fare is given a French touch. For starters there are Burgundy snails. Main course includes stewed partridge, braised duck and sole with almonds. Desserts include papaya sorbet and crêpe suzette. Closed Sun & Sep

. LANZAROTE, COSTA TEGUISE Neptuno

Av del Jabillo, Centro Comercial Neptuno, local 6, 35509

This airy restaurant in a shopping centre serves traditional Canary Islands cooking. LANZAROTE, YAIZA La Era

La Era occupies one of the few old houses to survive the island’s volcanic eruptions of 1730-36. It was built in the 17th century and restored as a restaurant by César Manrique, who created murals for it.