I'm just a fat gal with a blog and an opinion. Well, lots of opinions.

A Different Take On The LB Matter


Last night when I got home, after I walked Sir. Puppenheim, I explained to my husband the whole hubbub over the Lane Bryant tweet and subsequent shit-storm this incurred. His take actually surprised me.

He saw it purely as a corporate giant attempting to tear down an indie option for their customers. As though buying one t-shirt would somehow make us all see that we don’t need LB after all and thus the crumbling of the corporate control/structure of our time would ensure. He said it seemed that if fats can design and sell to each other then what the hell do we need with silly old polyester pushing LB. While I disagree with this theory, I like his take. He also thought that by shaming fats they would buy more clothes. Um, NO! I told him that there is no way that that is a business model. In fact no one depressed or ashamed would go into a mall/store to try on clothes in a fitting room and look in a mirror to buy clothes. Not happening. If anything, the opposite is true. We had a great lengthy discussion on the matter and I appreciated a non-fat & non-web opinion. It’s a rare thing.

Also, I love & heart this post from Lesley of Fatshionista on the matter:

4 Comments to

“A Different Take On The LB Matter”

  1. On July 30th, 2010 at 9:26 am Meaghan ladymeag Says:

    I can kind of see how the shaming plays into shopping ONLY at LB. If you are ashamed to be seen in other stores trying things on, then you’ll go to LB, where the “fat ladies shop.”

    I remember my mother (in her 50s, about a size 8 and constantly dieting to get back to her pre-three kids size 4; last I heard she’s now about a size 16 in her 60s and still yo-yo dieting) being distressed when I found Lane Bryant as a young teen (13 or so and a size 16.) She said, in as many words, that she was afraid that if I had a store to shop in that carried clothing in my size that wasn’t all sweatpants or men’s clothing that I would never be ashamed to shop, therefore making me thinner so I could buy clothing. We were still at the mall when she was giving me this speech. Some high school age boys came by and started making rude comments and noises at me and pointed at my Lane Bryant bag and said “Look! She shops at the fat girl store!” Suddenly, my mother was okay with Lane Bryant. Anytime someone complimented my sweater or skirt or anything and she was around, she’d pipe in with “Yeah, but she got it at Lane Bryant, you know, the (*whisper*) plus size store.” like that negated how good I looked or how cute the sweater was.

    (Personally, I was thrilled. I had clothes that fit! No tugging or pulling. I bought sweaters and corduroy skirts and in-style jeans and button up shirts that didn’t gap… I miss Lane Bryant before they went to all polyester, all couch-print stuff. )

    So my point is, they may indeed me attempting to shame their customers in the way that your husband suggested – if you are too ashamed to even look anywhere other than Lane Bryant for clothing, they have your business. They may not get as much business from each customer (“I’ll just buy two t-shirts for now, until I’m smaller.” “I don’t need a dress, what would I go to that I needed to look nice for?”) but they can put the minimum effort into the clothing (who needs stylish clothes when you “have to shop at LB”?) and keeping your business. It would probably be a lot more work to design and market to the clothes-horse, fashionable woman who wants quality, natural-fiber clothing at a reasonable price. Sure, that she’ll buy more but she might shop somewhere else if your goods aren’t up to her standards.

  2. On July 30th, 2010 at 9:39 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Yes. I think I’ve been surrounded by lovely FA-ness for so long that I forget this other side of it. I do recall the first time a friend took me into an Avenue, then called Sizes Unlimited! I was semi-horrified to be walking into it. But then, I found this black and white plaid pleated skirt with huge safety pins at the wrap part and I could not believe that it fit me perfectly. Then? I stopped caring what stores I went into and only worried about fit and price. But I know that many people are under far more pressure from family or friends so I can understand how that might play out. Thanks!

  3. On August 2nd, 2010 at 6:54 pm Erin Marie Says:

    Slightly unrelated- is your puppy’s name really Sir Puppenheim? That is amazing.

  4. On August 3rd, 2010 at 9:37 am Not Blue at All Says:

    Oh, no, sorry. Honestly, like any little cutey babe I have a million names for my pup. But his real name is Marius.

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