21 thoughts on “Free for Chubbies

  1. Scuse me, I think child services should probably step in. Giving fat kids clothes is tantamount to child abuse.

  2. Is the girl in the drawing supposed to be fat? I thought the depiction of normal looking girls as fat was a new phenomenon.
    I remember in the 70s having to shop at Sears’ “Pretty Plus” section (at least that’s what they called it in Canada). I remember thinking “pretty plus what?”

  3. OMG! My grandmother actually sent away for this catalog for my sister! G’ma was a regular with Lane Bryant in these early catalog days!

    Sis says thanks for the memory! :)

  4. This reminds me of this picture somewhere on lileks.com advertising overalls to fit whether you are “tall and thin, tall and fat, short and thin, or short and fat.” As Rethinking Thin reminded me, life was probably no easier for fatties in prior years, but ad copy was certainly a lot more matter-of-fact about what they were selling. It’s sort of refreshing in that way. Like the fact that the catalog is called the “Chubby Fashion Book.” Hee!

    I can’t see the whole ad because the sidebar is cutting it off in my browser, but I also enjoy the notation of “regular sizes,” like the copywriter is skeptical that there is any such thing. I am certainly on board with that.

    mimi, I shopped in Pretty Plus too. Not to mention the JCPenney version, Extra Special. Good Lord. I was like 10 and even I knew that this code for FAT GIRLS’ SECTION was cheesy.

  5. It’s really too bad that Lane Bryant stopped carrying clothes for fat girls. Can you imagine how a fat girl (in grade school/jr high/middle school) would feel if there was an actual place she could find the same kinds of clothing her thinner friends are wearing?
    Carrying them in their bricks and mortar stores would be even more awesome, in my book. I would have loved to have been able to go shopping in a store like that with my aunt (my dad’s sister-in-law, and she’s so cool, we’d have had a ball shopping at LB together).

  6. Lena Bryant (yes, Lena. Lane was a typo) was the first to offer maternity and plus size ready made clothing in the US. While this may not be PC I really respect the woman and company for keeping us “chubbies” in nice looking clothes that don’t break the bank.

  7. While this may not be PC I really respect the woman and company for keeping us “chubbies” in nice looking clothes that don’t break the bank.

    Oh, me too. And I only posted this ’cause I thought it was funny–I’m not horrified or anything.

  8. I remember in the 70s having to shop at Sears’ “Pretty Plus” section (at least that’s what they called it in Canada). I remember thinking “pretty plus what?”

    Oh, god, the flack I caught over needing clothes from that department one year. I remember thinking, “why don’t they just call is Ugly Kid clothes and be done with it?”

  9. I’m more worried that the girl’s legs don’t appear to be attached to her torso. Do they look off-center to anybody else?

  10. Is the girl in the drawing supposed to be fat? I thought the depiction of normal looking girls as fat was a new phenomenon.

    I always thought this too, until for a history project I had to leaf through issues of Seventeen from 1968. In addition to a shock (to my sheltered 16-year-old white girl brain) about how freaking blatant hateful racism used to be, I also learned that if anything, Seventeen has actually becoming more body-positive. Yes, more. One of the advice columns was something like “Dear Seventeen, my best friend is fat! What should I do?” which I don’t see them printing nowadays (not that I read it but from what I’ve seen). Another one had a feature about their cover models, one of whom was like “I was never FAT fat, but I was always a little heavy, but then I finally lost the weight and now everything is great!” (she went from like 5’7 and 135 to 5’7 and 120. Not that that’s an unreasonable weight for every single person ever, but when I at 5’7 went from 135 to 125, I lost bone density and TMI ALERT my Aunt Flo started dropping in unexpectedly if ya know what I mean).

    So in conclusion… this insanity has been going on for a while.

  11. (uh PS the thing about weight loss up there, maybe I should have been more clear, wasn’t about dieting or whatever, it was about, well, being really depressed and messed up and unhealthy. just wanted to make sure it didn’t come across wrong.)

  12. Nomie, the more I look, the more I become convinced that the picture isn’t actually of a girl at all. It’s a bunch of body parts in different shapes and sizes, haphazardly stuck together. I’m pretty sure that the head is tiny, and that the legs–in addition to being kind of off to the side–are too big for the torso.

    It might just be that I’m really tired, but now I can’t get the movie “May” out of my head.

  13. 10 1/2 is not a “teen” size. 10 would be a child’s size here, as in 10 years old, and 10 1/2 is the fuller cut for a child at the same height.

    I love the ad that Stella Mars put on a postcard of dresses for girls: “She can have a tummy and still look yummy!”

    I have a tummy, and I look pretty yummy, thank you very much. ;)

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