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High Fashion Missing out on Plus Size Dollars

Image: Eloquii

Image: Eloquii

The fashion industry is obviously a field where appearances matter – a lot. But just as important to the industry is money. How else can design houses stay afloat if they’re not selling anything? It is then quite puzzling that high fashion has an enormous money making opportunity right in front of them, and they are pretty much ignoring it.

Business of Fashion explores the high demand and rapidly evolving landscape of the plus-sized market, which can credit some of its growth to the outspoken legions of stylish women over a size 14 on the internet, begging for more stylish clothing options. In fact, their voices have been so loud that when The Limited shut down Eloquii, their plus-sized line, the response was so intense that they had to bring it back. But as dedicated, involved and ready to spend money as the plus base is, why then, are more brands so reluctant to cater to them?

“It’s a confluence of factors,” said Mariah Chase. “If they’re in the straight-size business, they believe that launching plus-size is going to cannibalize that. Also, it is like launching a new business. They have to put investment dollars up against it and so that’s something every business needs to weigh and understand.” And besides that, there is the obvious stigma against plus sizes that has brands a little timid to jump into the pool.

But regardless of how they feel about larger women, the fact is that plus size fashion is a lucrative opportunity. When Eloquii returned from its hiatus, its revenue increased 100 percent per quarter in 2014. That’s some serious dollars. And it’s time the fashion industry started looking at dollars and cents, instead of clinging to some idealized version of what they think women want to look like. 

They might be richer because of it.

[via Business of Fashion]