An increase in the retail of plus size mannequins and the latest upsurge in sales created by boutiques and high street shops is a good sign that clothing chains are increasingly marketing trendy apparel designed for curvaceous women.
The fashion industry watchers believe the new and now heightened trend of the century is in part due to the re-emergence of the classic “figure 8” hourglass silhouette, a shape that was gorgeous and “proper” for popular vintage fashion styles, particularly from the 1940s and 1950s.
According to a February 2012 article in The Telegraph titled “Surge in sales of “Adele-sized mannequins”, “One of the UK’s largest shop mannequin companies has reported a surge in orders for clothes dummies sized 12 and above. This is certainly good news for fat women aspiring to be models.
Over the last year, DisplaySense which supplies some of the UK’s biggest clothing chains with mannequins has seen a 16% percent increase in sales of “plus-size” window dummies”.
This might be good news for those aspiring to become plus-size models but think they are too fat. It’s good to learn that mannequin companies are trying hard to keep up with the demand of curvy forms and it’s even better to hear that some plus-size mannequins regularly sellout.
According to company spokesmen, “sales of large mannequins have risen from 4,600 units to well over 5,000 in the last year”.
The fact that in the summer of 2011, Italian Vogue celebrated curvy and fat models by having a front cover photo showing three gorgeous and stunning plus-sized women should send a message that is loud and clear.
Even the magazine’s editor-in-chief Franca Sozzani made a welcoming remark: “Why should these women slim down? Many of the women who have a few extra kilos are especially beautiful and more feminine.”
Commercial Viability of Growing Plus Size Apparel Market
Fashion designers of today should give good thought to the viability of designing clothes for skinny people and having them modelled by stick thin models. What size is the average woman anyway?
It is a glaring fact that most fashionable beautiful women walking this earth are curvy, with some amount of flesh in the right places.
Fashion designers and merchandisers may want thin shapeless models showcasing their stuff on their catwalk, but what is the commercial viability of such?
Now that the rapidly expanding market for the full-bodied woman is captured by fashion chains and independent retailers alike, the demand for curvy models will rise proportionately. Maybe this time they will realise the economic sense in employing the services of fat models.
Recent Studies on Full Figured Women’s Fashion
Research recently carried out shows that about one in five women in the western world now demands and wear plus-size clothing. Estimations show that the market for curvaceous women’s wear has increased by around 50% over a period of five years, from a modest £2.7bn to a whopping £4bn in 2011.
When compared to a growth of only 15% (over the same period) in the general women’s wear market, this is great news. At least women now believe that curves are gradually returning to the fashion and style scene.
Well it’s about time designers think more about the fact that majority of women out there are full-figured and beautifully curvaceous so the sooner they realise that there is a large plus size market out there for their future designs, the better off they’ll be in terms of earning increased revenue running into tens of billions of dollars.
And the modelling industry and agencies on their part will do good to encourage further plus size modelling careers and services, to showcase beautiful chic clothes created for those curvy women who need them; to view their body shapes the most.