Shopping While Fat
Alternatively Titled: Reaction Blog to Shopping the VBxTarget CollectionYesterday, Sunday, April 9, Victoria Beckham for Target, a limited edition fashion line at Target debuted. Target has done many collaborations with designers before, but this is the first time Target stocked plus size pieces from their designer collaboration in their brick and mortar stores. If any of you tried to buy anything from their Lilly Pulitzer collection, you’ll remember they previously were only available online. So, not only was this a collection I was looking forward to, but I had extra excitement knowing that I wouldn’t have to take a bunch of risks online. Typically when shopping online the frustration is that you have to front a lot of money to buy things that may not fit. Plenty of women yesterday told me they purchased things in multiple sizes because they didn’t want to risk missing out on some pieces by buying the wrong size!
When asked about her line back in October, Beckham had this to say - "I want to design for women no matter their budget, age, or size," Beckham told Refinery 29. "I want to empower women and girls, and make them feel like the best versions of themselves. The fact that I can offer plus size is really exciting, it's a first for me, and it's something important that I'm proud of."
After seeing the bright colors, fun structured garments, and how body positive this campaign was - well, needless to say I was just giddy when I got to Target with Myke yesterday afternoon. We walked around the VBxTarget section, which I was surprised to find mixed - straight, plus, and children’s sizing all in one area! I was also shocked at how much I had to choose from in plus sizes! I ended up taking seven things back to the dressing room and I was being picky! Myke suggested I do a small try on haul for my Instagram, which I couldn’t believe I hadn’t thought of myself! I headed back to the dressing room with my plethora of clothes and told him I’d meet up with him later.
I left the dressing room feeling happy and excited that I had found two dresses that I felt comfortable and confident in. When I met up with Myke I expressed how wonderful it all was and how some of the 3x’s were even a little large! That’s a big deal to me because sometimes with “collaboration” lines like this they do “junior plus” sizing so the 3x is actually only equivalent to a 1x. The sizing being a little large means that it’s even more inclusive even though the tag sizing only goes to a 3x. I gushed about how this is going to be a great way to show other designers that fat woman want to be fashionable too and are ready to spend their money! Such a great step in the right direction.
We finished our shopping and headed to the register. I decided to only buy one of the dresses and Myke offered to take the other one back for me. Waiting in line to check out, I thought of how to describe the line best for my try-on post. I thought about how years ago if I had gone in that dressing room and had half the things not fit me it would’ve ruined my whole day. I thought of how cute I was going to look in this new dress!
Myke came back and I could see fire in his eyes.
“I just screamed at a lady.”
Now let’s pause. For those of you not familiar with my boyfriend, he is not a screamer. He is friendly, funny, and easy to get along with. I literally have spent 30 extra minutes standing in line because he makes new friends everywhere we go. So, of course, his statement gave me pause.
His words came out fast and frenzied.
“I had just hung up that dress and this lady is in the section holding up an orange dress. She started laughing and comments to her friend - ‘why would they even make this in a 3x?’ I said to myself ‘Myke D, you gotta let it go.’ I continued walking toward the front of the store and just as I’m standing maybe 5 feet from her she says ‘no one that needs a 3x should be wearing anything like this.’ I stopped walking, turned and pointed directly at her and said ‘you’re being really fucking rude lady!’
She looked at me with shock, then said something snarky like ‘what’s it to you?’ and I said/shouted ‘Different people are different shapes and that’s why they make different sized clothing!’”
Myke went outside to cool off while I finished our transaction.
I have to tell you guys, I have never been so in love with a man before.
We spent the ride home talking about fat-phobia and the importance of the body positivity community. We discussed why this woman was so offended by the fact that they make different sizes in clothes. Why this woman felt the need to be disgusted by the idea of a fat person in a particular dress, not really taking into account that a 3x can look different on different people and more importantly, it shouldn’t affect you what other people wear. How she so flippantly decided to police other people’s bodies.
We mused if I had been the one to take the dress back. I admitted that I don’t know if I would’ve been brave enough to stand up to her. We wondered if there was someone else who overheard the interaction. I pointed out that if I had overheard her, I would’ve felt really shitty about her and myself, but hearing him stand up for people in general would’ve been inspiring. And that’s the point I want to make here.
Myke wasn’t standing up for me, his girlfriend, who had just found a beautiful dress she felt super cute in from that exact same section. He was standing up for anyone who’s ever had a shopping experience where something didn’t come in their size. He was standing up for people and their right to exist and be clothed however they want. He was standing up for the girl crying in the dressing rooms because none of the clothes in the store fit her.
Adding plus sizes to your brands does not affect your straight size customers. That woman was not inconvenienced by my size, 3x being there. But that 3x being there? MADE MY DAY. To walk into Target, everyone knows this place, and see bright colors, structured pieces, and fun patterns in a range from XS-3X ON THE SAME RACK? I wish I could be 15 again!
I thought it was important that we share our story because I need Target to know how important is that they’re including fat people in the conversation and the fashion. It’s so important because people will say “no one’s paying as much attention to yourself as you are” and in the same breath criticize a stranger’s weight. It’s important because some people don’t realize how fucking hard it is to exist as a fat person and to be able to walk into a well known store and feel valid is EVERYTHING.
If you’d like to see my try on pictures, head to my Instagram. And I want to hear from y’all - Have you seen the VBxTarget line? What pieces are you loving? I’d love to hear from people with different body types about the fit and comfort!
Have you ever experienced this kind of bullying? How did you respond to it? (Like I mentioned earlier, I don’t know if I would have been as brave as Myke was. There’s no shame in not confronting a bully; your mental health and safety is always top priority.)
Until Next Time,