Plus size retailer Lane Bryant is collaborating with Isabel and Ruben Toledo for a capsule collection, which is the first designer collaboration I can think of that’s geared towards plus size women. I’m pretty on the fence when it comes to Lane Bryant’s products, but I am 100% in favor of a designer collaboration that is specifically made with plus size women in mind, as opposed to the usual collabs made for women who are sizes 0-2 (ahem, looking at you, H&M).
As I said, in the past I have found Lane Bryant can be sort of meh, style-wise, but this news made me take a look and I see that LB has definitely improved their pieces. I’m basically jumping up and down over here. How many times a week do you all have to listen to me yell about the fact that cute clothing is so rarely made for women who aren’t sample sizes, and that it’s new levels of ridiculous that retailers won’t step up and meet this significant demand?
This collaboration seems like a huge step in the right direction towards taking plus size women out of shapeless, sad sacks and putting them in sexy, well-made clothing. There is no reason for high fashion to exclude women outside of the runway model body type, and this wildly positive step forward for inclusiveness. This collaboration is sure to bring high fashion to a whole new audience who have previously been ignored, especially given that Lane Bryant is “arguably the most recognizable plus-size retailer in the country.”
The Toledos’ (designer Isabel will work alongside her artist husband, Ruben) full collection won’t launch until next spring, but Lane Bryant will begin selling a Toledo tee shirt and tote bag in the imminent future.
A high-end designer collaboration for Lane Bryant signals a distinct shift. The Toledos will start off with a novelty tee and tote bag, with plans to launch a full collection of ready-to-wear, outerwear and accessories in Spring 2014. WWD reports that there is even a fashion show in the works for next season, creating a higher profile for the plus-size collection, and hopefully adding the the current high record of one plus-size runway show at NYFW.
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