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You Are What You Wear: How Plus-Size Fashion Figures in Fat Identity Formation
Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of Media Studies, Fashion Studies.
2014 (English)In: Fashion Theory: The Journal of Dress, Body and Culture, ISSN 1362-704X, E-ISSN 1751-7419, Vol. 18, no 1, 45-71 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This article examines the overlooked market of plus-size fashion and explores the ways in which the fashion industry neglects and marginalizes fat consumers. Faced with limited options in garments colloquially known as “plus-size” or “outsize” that are typically relegated to dark corners of clothing stores and are excluded from the pages of high fashion periodicals, the plus-size consumer lacks options in fashioning her self-identity. Under these circumstances, the role the fashion industry has played in further entrenching fat stigma in the collective consciousness and in abetting the processes of fat identity formation amongst plus-size consumers merits closer examination. Drawing upon the collected sartorial biographies of three self-identifying plus-size women, this article considers the ways in which fat identities are formed through the intimate practices of self-fashioning and via social channels such as shopping and fashion blogging, thereby bridging the fields of fat studies and fashion studies. It also takes into account issues of performativity and dress as a situated bodily practice. Through these case studies, the role the fashion industry plays in the processes of fat identity formation is brought to the fore, as are the complicated, creative, and sometimes subversive means through which fat women engage with plus-size fashion.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. Vol. 18, no 1, 45-71 p.
Keyword [en]
Fashion Studies, Identity, Performativity, Fat Studies, Fatshion, Embodiment, Ethnography, Plus-Size Fashion, The Fashioned Body, Blogging
National Category
Cultural Studies
Research subject
Cultural Anthropology; Fashion Studies; Ethnology; Sociology
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-100209DOI: 10.2752/175174114X13788163471668ISI: 000331851600004OAI: diva2:692022
Available from: 2014-01-29 Created: 2014-01-29 Last updated: 2015-03-13Bibliographically approved

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Downing Peters, Lauren
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