How to succeed in plus-sizes without really trying

By Natasha Davis

In the hustle and bustle of Spring 2015 haute couture fashion week in Paris, the frenetic energy of journalists, celebs, models and designers culminated in this, the ultimate expressions of fashion creativity. From a journey through the decades with Dior to the ethereal beauties of Elie Saab, this week was all about the dramatics of fashion.

However, fashion reality is what dominated the scene for plus-size women this week. Sans dramatics and high art, Target, the monolithic multi-brand retailer in the United States, decided to give everyone a sneak peek inside their new plus-size line, Ava & Viv, which will be available in stores in mid February.

Of course, this new line will be simple and trendy, like many of Target’s other lines. The price point will range from $10-$79.99. Although, what is almost more interesting than the clothes, are the young women Target brought in to test-drive the collection. They chose three prominent plus-size fashion bloggers: Nicolette Mason, Chastity Garner and Gabi Gregg. This highlights Target’s drive to use this line to tap a younger millennial audience that they have previously ignored.

It is a step in the right direction that a major retialer has finally deigned to give plus-size women basic and trendy options, but in light of this week’s events, it is difficult not to ask, where is the couture? Or at the very least, where are the designers?

Jean Paul Gautier will usually use at least one plus-size model in his couture shows, but he is the exception to the general rule that plus-size women do not belong in high fashion. Success in couture and high fashion is marked by innovative designs, beautiful craftsmanship and a unique point-of-view, but succeeding for plus-size women means finally being allowed to have basics.


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