Things aren’t looking pretty for Target Australia. The retail superstore is in hot water for its “dowdy," “frumpy" and “aging” new line of plus-size fashion.
Excitement for the clothing collection backfired after the store announced new looks for its plus-size Belle Curve line with a Facebook post on August 18 and users exploded with rage. Hundreds commented on how unflattering the designs were for curvier ladies, adding that the line lacked in quality fabric, color and versatility. Many also wondered why the store couldn’t simply extend its standard women’s fashion wear into the plus size range.
Featuring about 90 items including swimwear and sleep, the Belle Curve collection offers only five dresses and one skirt, according to Target’s website. Dominated by loose-fitting tops and legging-style pants, most women bemoaned the line’s lack of wear-to-work options.
“Bigger girls want to wear nicer clothes other than oversized tshirts & jeggins!! Step it up Target,” wrote user Lisa Shearer.
“Your Plus size range, what there is of it, is disgusting and certainly doesn't reflect the same effort that you put into clothing selection for size 6-16,” added Allie Tabone.
Yearning for stylish looks, users lamented how hard it is to find stylish fashions for sizes 16-26.
“Maybe three years ago [Belle Curve] used to give the standard range a run for its money. Now it has joined the ugly, plain and boring. Plus-size women want to feel good too!” said Alexandra Feldgen.
Those who denounced the deficit of tasteful plus-size clothing on Target Australia’s post are not alone in their frustrations. Though the average American woman wears a size 16, the sartorial shortage of plus-size options is a problem that persists with American retailers too, say experts. Style guru and former Liz Claiborne chief creative officer Tim Gunn called it “baffling” the way that the American fashion industry has “turned its back” on plus-size shoppers.
“There are 100 million plus-size women in America, and, for the past three years, they have increased their spending on clothes faster than their straight-size counterparts. There is money to be made here ($20.4 billion, up 17 percent from 2013),” wrote the "Project Runway" mentor in a Washington Post op-ed last year.
“But many designers — dripping with disdain, lacking imagination or simply too cowardly to take a risk — still refuse to make clothes for them.”