I want to draw everyone’s attention to this post by our advice columnist ally, the spectacular Miss Conduct, at whose dinner parties I would dearly love to be a fly on the wall. (I had an advice-columnist crush on Miss Conduct even before I found out that her husband publishes my beloved Annals of Improbable Research.) Miss Conduct enjoins her readers to make sure that their “fat clothes” are as pretty as their “thin clothes”:
Ladies, get yourselves some pretty fat skirts, or fat pants. We all have weight fluctuations, due to our monthly cycles, or work or family busy-ness that makes it hard to exercise and easy to rely on takeout, or stress that drives us to the comforting arms of potato chips or chocolate, or travel adventures that make calorie-counting absurdly inappropriate. Don’t punish those times when you’re over your set point with hideous clothes that you think will “motivate” you to starve on broccoli and fake diet drinks until you’re back to where you want to be. It won’t work. Self-denigration is a stunningly inefficient route to motivation.
I disagree with Miss C.’s assertion in the post that “I need to lose 10 pounds” is an adequate shorthand for “I need to do the things that will, if I do them, make me happier and more energetic and oh, by the way, lead to me losing 10 pounds” — ideally, perhaps, but in a diet-happy culture that equates fat with health, I believe it’s dangerous to get sloppy about our terminology. When you say “I need to lose 10 pounds,” you may truly mean “I need to pick up my healthiest habits again,” but plenty of people say “I need to get healthy” meaning “I need to, at any cost, lose 10 pounds.” It behooves us to be precise if we’re going to break that dangerous association.
But I certainly agree with her that we should clothe ourselves as beautifully as possible at every weight. I’m dealing with this issue from the flip side right now — I had some great clothes when I was above my set range that no longer fit now that I’m off Lexapro and back to my regular size. Now I’m left with old clothes that are ratty, and less-old clothes that are too big (and sometimes ratty). This finally reached crisis level when my skirt fell off while I was walking the other day — no joke! — and I’ve been buying clothes from Target.com like crazy, but it’s a rather lonely and only intermittently successful endeavor, nothing like going shopping with a bunch of fatties. So in the interest of pretty fat skirts, for Shapelings of all sizes, let’s have a virtual shopping trip! Show us your favorite piece of clothing (skirt or otherwise) in a plus size that’s available for sale online right now. If you can, introduce us to a new store. If you can’t, this is a good time to check out centralized shopping sites like Beauty Plus Power and This Lush Life, or look over the store reviews on Fatshionista.com. Then come back here and show us what you’re craving!
My personal obsession, just to get you started, is actually a skirt. I’ve been itching to buy this amazing skirt from Fashion Overdose for literally months — how great would that look with my knee-high platform boots? I’ve been convincing myself it costs too much, but I think I’m actually gonna do it, unless of course you guys fall just as deeply in love as I am, and buy it out before I get a chance.