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Read Sally's article, "Fashion's Invisible Majority"

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Here's What YOU Had To Say About Sally Smith's Article
"Fashion's Invisible Majority"


My name is Emily. I am grateful for the plus and super sized models in your ads. While I personally am on the bigger side of your models (size K, L to be exact), I do enjoy some of the clothing you have. I would like to encourage you to expand your L size. As someone who likes her tops in particular “loose” fitting, I would love to see more loose fitting blouses and also some Coats. Living in the cornbelt can be super humid in the summer but super cold in the winter.

I just wish to thank you for the way you take care of us and even with the professional looking line of clothing. We work, play and go on cruises and it’s good to see that our clothing doesn’t look like it came from the local “flowery” tent shop. It’s also good to see beautiful women modeling the clothes. I do enjoy Tesia (sp?) because she’s like me – a big beautiful black woman. While she’s smaller than I am, I just appreciate the way she seems to carry herself. Thanks. Well I do have to go now but just a quick note to let you know I do appreciate you and get more “L” sizes.

Emily B.
Champaign, IL


I read your article with much interest. One of the main reasons I shop at Making It Big is because the fashions are shown on women of my size and figure type to help determine what it will look like on me. I receive so many "large size catalogs" in the mail that feature models which I cannot relate to because they are wearing such a small size and of course, the clothing always looks well on them. I admire several of the styles in your catalog but unfortunately I am on a fixed income and must choose carefully before purchasing any item. Please continue to use your beautiful models in your catalog.

Lita M.


I love MIB but find the prices too so high that I can only afford to purchase something once in awhile. Since I live in the Bay Area I can and do go to the outlet and purchase off the seconds rack. I must say that you do get you money worth out of MIB stuff. I am still wearing stuff I purchase 10 years ago. Some has needed a little mending but most is such good shape that I still wear them to the office.

I love being able to see what an item will look like on a body similar to mine in other large size catalogs you have to imagine and then hope it fits like you thought it would.

My only request is for some more affordable choices in the MIB catalog. Keep up the good work!

Peggy C.


Thank you, Sally, for putting voice to one of my biggest pet peeves! I've been a plus-size woman my entire a teenager I struggled to find clothes that not only fit me, but were somewhat fashionable, usually to no avail. Now, as a 44-yr. old professional woman, I still face the same struggle.

I've also worked part-time off and on for many years in numerous plus-size stores....Fashion Bug, Lane Bryant, Lerner Woman, and Avenue, to name a few....and one of the most recurring themes expressed by not only myself but my customers was the lack of true plus-size models in the various catalogs. It's impossible for a size 26-28 woman to determine how an outfit will look on her when it's being modeled by someone wearing a size 14 or less. That's why, when I first discover MiB, I was so happy to see your clothing being modeled by women who are MY size......I can get a better idea of how a dress or top will look on me because I can see it on someone else my size. That's a wonderful feeling, and went a long way towards my decision to shop online with you guys. I recently ordered my first items - a couple of tops - and am anxiously awaiting them. I hope they will fit and look as nice on me as they did on the model online, and if they do, you can bet I'll be a repeat customer!

One other complaint I have about the plus-size industry, which is probably shared by a lot of women, is the cost of most plus-size clothing. I realize it takes more fabric to produce a size 28 or 30 or 34 top than, say, a size 10, but it seems to me that the prices are still just way too high. I mean, $79 or more for a t-shirt? Come on! The bad thing is, the clothing industry has us over a barrel.......we can't just go into any store and grab something off the rack that fits and looks decent. And in these hard economic times, not many of us can afford the high price of a new outfit (or even one article) when the same amount of money could pay the electric bill or buy groceries.

OK, I'm off my soap box now :-) Honestly, I'm thankful for companies like yours that provide quality plus-size clothing that doesn't make me look like it came from Omar the Tent Maker. Keep up the good work!

Leisa M.


And did you see (I saw it via AOL) how much photoshopping was done on great looking women to change their waists, arms, etc to make them conform to some non-human standard. It must be particularly insulting to women of color to see their sisters "lightened" AND slimmed.

Thanks for your article.


Hi, I just read your article about plus size models. I agree and am tired of being regulated to the back corner. I do appreciate the fact that you use plus size models in your catalog. I just wish others did as well.

Thank you.
Sincerely, Denise S.


Oh, boy, where do I begin. Yes I really appreciate MIB's committment to using plus-size models. My body is different from the average size 10, and I get e much better idea of how clothes will wear from models who are close to my size. As a supoer-size woman and a lawyer, I deal daily with people who think that plus-wsize means low IQ. Having a decent wardrobe certainly helps -- I live in a world of suits and I have to approximate the rest of the (mostly male) gang. My only complaint about MIB is that sometimes, the clothes are too casual -- but I am thankful for the ability to have a professional appearance.

Charlotte A.
Midland, MI


How about speaking up for us plus-size women who are also petite?! I can't tell you how difficult it is for me to find clothes that fit me. I've been 5'1" since I was in the 4th grade and thought I would have to shop in the tall shop because I was so much taller than all my friends and even my older brother. But lo and behold, I didn't get taller and I only got wider after being in a miserable marriage for far too many years. Now that I don't have anything to blame it on, I still struggle with my weight and height. I've been a customer of MIB since I lived in Sonoma County for 14 years and loved the shop in Rohnert Park. However, in the new store, they don't have as many of the petite size slacks as they seemed to in the other store. And, I know there are more women 5' to 5' 5" who have the same problem but probably haven't spoken up in the past. Even America's Next Top Model is recognizing that there are shorter women out there since for the next season they are looking for models who are under 5' 7". I'm addicted to this show, but I can't stand how skinny most of the girls are who are on the show. However, last night Courtney got cut so we will have to deal with the skinny, skinny's for the remainder of this season. Oh well, that's my 2 cents worth.

Yah for us plus-size petite women!!!

Also, another problem I have with some of MIB's clothes is that the tops are great, but again not made for the shorter women so some of them end up looking like short dresses as opposed to long tops. I would be happy to volunteer to be a model for sizing on clothes.

Barbara P.
Sonoma County, California


I’m 43, very large, and taking swimming lessons for the first time in my life thanks to MIB and its beautiful models. How wonderful to see women my sizes in gorgeous dresses and even—gasp—swimsuits! It was because I could see confident plus size models in swimwear that I had the courage to buy a suit, sign up for lessons and actually appear in a public place with my knees showing. There should be more plus size models, especially in plus size clothing catalogs—why try to sell things to me if you won’t show me what I might look like in it? If someone like me isn’t pretty enough to appear in the catalog, then maybe someone like me shouldn’t buy your clothes at all!

Seeing lovely plus size models makes me think that I could be pretty, too.



I was happy to read your comments in the e-mail. I agree that stores and designers try to keep"women of size" out of the main sight line in stores. If they could only see past a "size" and see that we have the money to spend on clothes that fit. I ,for one, would appreciate a store that carries 'casual office wear'. Shopping isn't fun for me. It's harder than work and so I end up catalog shopping and having to send back what I don't like or doesn't fit.

Enough whining.

Keep up the good work.
Candy P.


Dear Sally,

Just a few months ago I got my first MIB catalog in the mail. I LOVE seeing plus size clothing modeled by plus size women. It helps us to accept ourselves and it helps to be able to imagine what the clothing will look like on me. You have the most beautiful clothing I've seen in any catalog for plus size people. I've been so pleased with the items I've purchased which have garnered me many compliments. It is hard to accept oneself as a plus size person and beautiful clothes help! Sometimes I have thought that if I buy myself clothes that I am accepting my large size and that is bad. I don't think that way anymore. I am this size right now and while I am this size I want to feel good about myself and what I wear. You are helping me with this important self care.



Dear Sally,

I agree with all that you said in your article about so called “plus size” models and the fashion industry ignoring us. Although I do have another complaint.

If we, the women who are size 14 and over, are indeed the majority, then why is almost all “plus size” clothing so incredibly expensive? Most plus size clothing is NOT higher end designer wear yet we must pay designer wear prices! It is an insult to say that the reason is because more fabric is used to make plus size clothing. I am an avid sewing and I can tell you that the increase in fabric does not justify the exorbitant price we are forced to pay! I feel in many respects plus sized women are held hostage by the plus size clothing manufacturers and retailers. I would love to see this section of the market come in line with retail in general in that they would, because of the current economy, offer discounts and sales that are truly discounts and sales and not just hype.

Thank you for hearing me out.
Linda H.


i was happy, reading this article. MIB has had a profound influence on my life, especially in the last 5 or so years. i love your designs. i feel confident ordering something that i like--that it's going to fit and look good.

bravo! more more more!

sincerely, luisa f.


I agree with what you covered in your latest article regarding how the fashion industry does their best to make the majority of the female population invisible. Seems to me that for all their marketing smarts and pursuit of profit they are missing the most important market, the average or plus size woman who would like to have a selection of clothing that is available, fashionable and affordable.

I entered the majority of the female population at age 12 or 13 when I began wearing a size 16 (in the early 1960s). I remember the heartbreak of trying to find a nice dress for my Grade 8 graduation that year and ending up with a substitute from a national catalogue which was actually an evening dress for a much older woman (with spaghetti straps) which my mother made over into straps wide enough for me to wear a bra.

The situation hadn't improved when I graduated from high school when I was forced to modify a "normal size" dress by adding side panels so that I could have something to wear. Luckily, for all three of my university graduations, we all wore caps and gowns so what I was wearing underneath was less of an issue.

I have gone on to a long career in government (soon to be 36 years) in which I have represented the federal government at home and abroad and in international meetings and in places as different as Kenya, Ireland, Belgium, Trinidad and Argentina. During all that time it has been a struggle to find clothing appropriate to my shape and size and which is flexible enough to travel well. Making It Big has been a huge part of my life since I discovered it, as your clothes are made from (mostly) natural fabrics and are fitted for the larger woman. I loved the approach you had earlier on where you could choose to dye your pieces to match to create perfect outfits. Some of the nicest compliments I have received are for outfits created that way from your catalogue.

the nicest compliments I have received are for outfits created that way from your catalogue.

By the way, I thought you would like to know that when I am in home base, I work in a large office complex (2500 + employees) and I have been approached often by complete strangers who ask me where I got a particular outfit. I have passed on copies of your catalogue and your website many, many times over the years.

Judith H.


Greeting Sally,

As a proud and confident Super-Size Big Beautiful Woman (SSBBW), I would like to commend Making it Big for their values and their bravery in their choice to validate a huge percentage of the women in this country. Pretending that we do not exist has not been helpful in giving us a voice or a valued position in our society. Shunning us, condemning us, criticizing us and judging us has not helped one large person feel valued and change our perceived "evil" , "gluttonous" or " disgusting" ways. No positive change will ever come from ridicule and shame.

In my opinion, a HUGE part of this obstacle is that WE have not asserted our voices in unison, verbally, in writing or in our living our lives. Some of us believe that at least part of what " they" say is true. We should be ashamed, embarrassed, stay in hiding, wear black and never stripes or any bright colors, keep our eyes down, diet and hide until we reach a much more " acceptable" weight.

Lord knows I would like to be an average size or at least smaller than what I am presently. I have been dieting since the age of 3, yes, 3 years old ! The more I dieted, the larger I became and the more self-hate and eating disorders I had. If more large and very large people would assert themselves through their actions, their confidence and their inner strengths, more people would also be more accepting.

I dress in bright colors, stripes, giraffe prints, polka dots, anything I feel like. I do my hair and make-up and I look everyone in the eye. A firm hand-shake, a verbal hello, a confident air about me has had enormous effects on the people around me and the people I meet, especially other large or very large persons. When people see me, they sometimes are confused. She is fat and huge so she is a target but wait..... she looks very pretty and confident and dresses quite sharply..... hmmmm, she doesn't show that she feels bad about herself and wow, she said hi to me or smiled. I LOVE to confuse people and shock them. I don't yell or get angry or give them the finger but it has quite a similar effect. I do it with love. I love myself and in turn, eyes are opened.

Keep blazing the trail, Making it Big, I am proud to see women like me in print, looking beautiful and confident. I will keep doing my part, please join me.

Most Sincerely,
Trease V.
Hampden, ME



WELL DONE and keep up the good work. My eldest daughter and I are both plus sized and love that the models in your catalogue are real women in real sizes. We both HATE other catalogues where they use slim models, the clothes do not look or fit the same. My younger daughter is around a size10/12 and an actress in New York. She was offered some modeling once AS A PLUS SIZE model! She was brave enough to say no, I am not big enough!

Good luck,


I have been a client of Making it Big for many, many, years. I appreciate the quality of the clothing and also the styles. I get compliments daily on the things I wear. I still have many of the clothing I originally bought. I love getting my catalog and seeing the new styles. The only thing I would really love to see is more choices of capri’s and in lots of different colors. I don’t care much for the cotton spandex capri’s. You used to make some of 100% cotton similar to a heavy t-shirt material and also a kind of a guazey type cotton capri. I still have some of the older capri’s, with care they lasted way beyond their years. I will continue to a loyal client. Thanks so much for your quality products.

Nanette C.


I live in Canada and wear anything from a size 20 to 26, depending on the manufacturer.

Plus size stores are VERY far and few between in Canada, hence I end up ordering stuff from the US most of the time.

And let’s not get started on lingerie, IF I can find a decent fitting bra here in Canada I’ll pay $100 +, whereas I have found a few websites based in the US where I can buy good bras for under $25. Yahoo!

Thanks for the article.
Elaine B.


I enjoy looking at the catalog and I enjoy receiving your clothes. The clothes are perhaps a bit more expensive than other catalogs BUT the quality is MUCH better. I recommend you all the time to other large sized women. I am a fairly new customer but the difference is wonderful!

Kate K.


Loved the article! Rock on! I am rethinking where I spend my money.


Hurray finally someone who speaks the truth. When I buy clothes I want to see the models sizes 18, 20, 24, 26 not the little skinny things. The only thing I didn't like about the articles was the advertisement at the end showing a skinny modeling big girl clothes.

Monica B.



I agree with everything you said. I LOVE MIB clothes and the models are realistic. Viewing plus size clothes on a size 10 model is deceiving and makes it more difficult to visualize what those clothes will look like on me.

It speaks volumes when the fashion industry will pass on millions and millions of dollars because they don't want to see plus size people in their clothes. Will the prejudice ever go away?

I would love to see MIB make clothes in a size smaller. Smaller than a size E is still plus size. I love the quality and fit of MIB and I really don't want to go back to the other makers of plus size clothes.

Thank you for all you do; I've been a loyal customer for many, many years.







Thanks so much for telling the truth in your article. I really appreciate models that look like me instead of some scrawny little slip of a woman trying to show off large womens clothes.

Betty C.
A large Texas girl


I think we need more plus size models. I frustrated when I order from a plus size catalog that features the thinner model, and get the item home and it does look right.

Marisa D.


Hello, Sally:

Thank you for your article on how the fashion industry uses plus size models. Years ago I read an article on just this subject, particularly how Lane Bryant and Roaman's never used plus size models in their catalogs. Their response was that their research indicated that clothing modeled by plus size women did not sell as well as clothing shown on traditional "skinny" models.

I think this highlights the false body image that most women have, regardless of size. It is easier for a woman (any size) to look at a photograph that she thinks is pleasing, and then superimpose that image over her perception of her own body. Most women just don't know how they really look. We are bombarded by images of smaller bodies and the message to all women is "this is good, this is sexy, this is how you get what you want in life." Popular culture images of plus and super-size women are confined to Jenny Craig commercials and TV shows like The Biggest Loser, where the message "you are not acceptable" is hidden with a smirk under the guise of "getting healthier."

If the public is repelled by plus size people, it is natural for the plus size person to be repelled by images of plus size models. Once a woman is willing to really look at herself and accurately perceive her body, she can begin the process of loving and embracing the beautiful person she is. MIB's customers can look at your clothing modeled on women who resemble them and change their minds about what looks good. Our brains have evolved to connect the familiar with survival. Imagine what can happen when "familiar" shifts away from the airbrushed thin minority to real images of the real majority.

Robin J.


Warmest Greetings Dear Sally,

Wonderful to "see" you again.

I too am a big fan of Making It Big. They (you?) deserve our wardrobe budgets and applause. Making It Big does so many things right. The models are the best in the business. Real size models with real model poise and beauty. Exactly what we want to see when shopping for new clothes.

Alas, I moved to England four years ago, making international shopping an impossible nightmare. Even when a progressive retailer like Making It Big is willing to ship over the pond, UK customs taxes the goods so they come in at double the original cost.

From my experience, nobody is doing what Making It Big has been doing for the longest time: Nobody dares show us what our bodies look like when fashionably dressed with confidence. The women who run this bold, beautiful company should head a training enterprise for all other retailers selling us clothing modeled by well-meaning, slender women. Is it any wonder Lane Bryant is closing 150 stores this year --- and Figure Magazine disappears this month? They still don't get it. We actually want to see women who look like us. Fancy that!

What are you doing these days, Sally? Please do bring me up to date.

Take excellent care of your beautiful self.

Marsha C.
Westerham, Kent, Great Britain


Hi Sally,

For me, it is much more difficult knowing whether something will work on a "larger canvas" if the models are not also large. I think that Making it Big allows me to see just that before I buy, which is particularly important as I am ordering from the UK which involves customs duty, tax etc which can not be reclaimed if I return something. In the UK this would never happen but as we do not have companies that provide just for plus size women I suppose that is more difficult. Over here the companies that do cover larger sizes do not go as large as plus size and they cater for all sizes in their marketing. So I suppose that although they might use slightly larger models, they are not noticeably so. That goes back to your point about people liking to see clothes on smaller women. Even the one highstreet company that does cater for larger women over here does not use noticeably larger women as models. That particular company does not really cater for larger women in the best way possible in my opinion, because the styles are just bigger versions of what everyone else wears which often does not work, and the colours are drab.

Making it Big is so refreshing in so many ways. The styles are made for bigger and plus size women, and actually probably would not suit slimmer people. That means that the style works and flows over your body to flatter it , when standing or sitting (which is something that always needs considering too). There is also a full range of types of clothes and as I wear dresses most of the time there is always a range that is attractive. Also the colours are bright and so appealing, Making it Big does not believe in us all hiding away in dull colours, it believes in celebrating your size. This means that I wear them with confidence which is so important when you are a plus size woman in a very visible position in the working world. People often comment on my clothes and the colours of them and I suppose by making a feature of my size with my clothes, colourful jewellery and long and vibrant coloured hair, I do not feel that I have to apologise for it.

Making it Big also has a refreshing approach to increasing self esteem in larger women. The emphasis is on happy and healthy which is so important. It is truly unique company with helpful and friendly people who genuinely want you to look your best. The emphasis on using larger models and employing plus size women in other roles is part of their commitment to larger women.For me it would seem out of keeping with the philosophy of the company if they did not use large models, because how could they have this empowering approach and then not value larger women enough to use them as models. It also showcases their lovely clothes to better effect if large models are used because their clothes look better on larger women, so it makes sense from a marketing perspective.

Long may this unique approach to a unique client group of impressive women continue. There is nowhere else like MIB and we would be lost without you. The world would be a duller and very limited world in terms of clothing for larger women, which would have a major effect on self esteem, confidence and self belief for a lot of larger and plus size women.




Thank you!! I love this article about the absence of plus size models in the fashion world. As you say, we hardly need to be told-- and how embarrasing to go shopping with a small size friend but have to look in that special "corner" and then maybe find one or two items that fit us super-size girls. I love MIB, if only to see your beautiful models smiling back at me.

Ever notice how fat women are never pictured smiling in the usual media, but must pose dour and in ill fitting clothes as though we live in a "before" shot of a weight loss ad.

Again, Thank you, Thank you.



I just want to say, I hope you will always keep your plus-size models. That is one thank i like about your company. I just wish more company's would have plus-size models. When i see them i can see me more how i would look in the cloths. keep up the good work, I will say i just wish you would have more cheaper cloths. I like the long blouse you have, but i wish you can find a company that you can buy your cloths cheaper to pass the saving to us.


I just spent a whole hour writing the biggest pile of drivel about your recent article. I can't tell you how much I agree with you. I have seen the fashion industry shift around and kick their toes in the sand and hem and haw for decades to no avail. No, not true! There has been so little movement that you get a better response from Congress in passing the new year's budget!

I have a big mouth. For many years I have spent yakking it up on the phone with Consumer Service Desks of these mail-order catalogue companies. I have complained until I am purple in the face.. All to no avail. I still see skinny little anorexics modeling clothes that they have to hold up or back or sit on because they are too large for them.

I am a knitter and I have seen a good deal of movement in the direction which is more helpful to ample knitters. I highly object to the use of skinny models in the pattern books as well. How, can we amplistas get a good view of a garment on a flat butt when we have a 6X shelf above that butt? And, who the HELL (pardon me) taught the designer that a woman with a 60" bust and 6X hips desperately needs huge circus rings around her body on a jersey shirt! Or, another example is the piles of huge plaids or prints that make our large sizes resemble nomad tents. Take your pick. That is more of the kind of ignorance that makes me very angry. It's a purposeful kind of sabotage of the larger women to make us more invisible by ridicule.

I have seen movement in a more positive direction within the knitting industry. Apparently, we ample knitters have been doing a lot of loud complaining to the yarn companies and designers. Pattern sizes have increased to accomodate many of us who are quite large. The designers have begun to notice and the ripple has caught on. Because of my chronic complaining a creative pattern company I recently discovered that they have included in their descriptions the sizes of their offered patterns other than S-M-L. I have just recently received my Premier copy of a new European knitting magazine. Their sizes are mostly useless to me so I will be sending off my email bitterly complaining about the lack of understanding for their primary US targets of their magazine--us--and, asking them to rescind my subscription. If enough of us do this, we will begin to see a little upsizing.

After all these years of crabbing and complaining about the models used to very little response, maybe we should consider making adjustments to the way in which we are attacking this. Since the fashionistas know that in spite of all our complaining, we will still need their clothing because it has to come from somewhere. What would happen if we began to attack the problem from the less obvious standpoint than their precious storefront models where they can see us coming? What kind of brainstorming can a think tank do to work on a list of effective 'tricks' that we can use without shooting ourselves in the feet -- once we could find them? How can a solution be found when we are invisible? The deal is to hit them in the pocketbook. Stop buying from overseas where they have no clue to sizing American women's clothing. But, that's a whole new argument!

It's not only yarns of which I speak but also fabrics. I am a sewer also.

This soapbox chat has been brought to you affectionately by Jan F. in Providence, RI, where there should be a whole lot of textile mills and jewelry factories instead of empty burning bldgs!


Hello Sally:

I want to thank you for your article. You are right on the money with your thoughts and observations. I prefer to order an item when it is modeled on a woman who resembles my size, because then I will have a realistic idea of how the material will drape, the silhouette of the style, how the length will be, how the sleeves will look, etc. All of these things are important to me. If I can't be there to try the clothes on myself, then the next best thing is to have someone who looks like me try them on for me! I applaud your models and I applaud your decision to utilize real-sized women, because this saves me time while catalog shopping and avoids the frustration of receiving an item that in no way resembles what I imagined when modeled on a size 4 woman!

Thank you!

Dora P.


I am all for plus size models, otherwise it is difficult to know how it is going to look on you when it comes. I have ordered from other catalogues online, and they never show the true size of the largest sizes, and models that fit into them. So I have come to realize, even after complaining to them, that the majority of large women just can’t face being larger, even if they are. Cut and styling for larger women than size 3X seems to be very difficult to show.

I really wanted to complain about my last order also, as I thought I was getting the second item free, and it was recently billed to our credit card at full price for both items. Why?

Also, if you could lower the prices of your items, I would be buying many more of them, as you seem to be one of the few places left online that I can order from. I am a large woman living in Japan, the land of the tiny woman. And I stress the word, TINY! So I enjoy reading about and looking at other large women so that I can get ideas, and feel better about myself the way I am!

Heather S.


hi my name is betty and I am a size 1xto2x in most plus sizes and I get so tired of going to a store or looking at catalogs for plus size clothing and see only to size 18 to 20 and have them call that thier plus size section. frankly I'm fed up . if they do make the outfit to fit you then it's either so long in the sleeves or the hem that it's got to be tailored, or the shoulders come half way between your shoulders and your elbows. I am 5ft. 4" tall and I told you my size so can anything be done about this or is it something we just have to live with? I know I've checked the petite sections to but they don't have the right sizes they need real people to be these so called plus models. I'm so tired of trying to find what fits. if you order it online and it doesn't fit then you have to send it back and then wait another two weeks to get another one that might fit and so on and so on. well if you can come up with a solution please let me know first i think we should all send out messages to every plus size women we know and start out buy taking thier sizes down and making a new wardrobe for each one and then put them all in a magazine and on the internet and someone should start a desigcompany that caters strickly to what we would like to see on us and not what the buyer thinks we want. well I've blown off my steam and I can only wish you much success and the best to you and good luck.

thanks for listening
betty r.


Hi and thanks for your great article. I am a full time model in New Yor (Plus Size are Goddesses....Yeah!). I am a former FORD NY Model. Before that I was the full time fit model at Lane Bryant in Columbus, Ohio, at their corporate headquarters for nine years. Their response to using our size on the walls in the store was that statistics show customers don't want to see women your size on the walls. I am a standard size 18/20. I wholeheartedly disagree and have personally spoken with many women in the stores who do not feel that way at all. In fact, most of them are angered.

I feel it sends a mixed message to us that we are good enough for them to take our money, but not good enough (or too big) to be used in their advertising in the stores, flyers and catalogs. Of course, it's not just Lane Bryant who does this.

Thanks for writing this article and thanks for listening. I heard about your website when I spoke at the PPANJ, Professional Photographer's Association of New Jersey in February. One of the photographers told me about you.

Keep up the good work!
Terri M.
New York, NY


While I totally agree with your article, I believe you've forgotten to include a few things.

I firmly believe we need to have plus sized (20+) models and why not your ordinary woman too?

When I peruse a lot of these plus sized clothing magazines, I have a hard time picturing myself in the clothing because the women modeling them are small!

I am a size 24W and consider myself to be attractive, and would like to see more models who are BBW like myself.

If you think about it there are so many different body types and shapes in the plus size world.

Thank you for showcasing just a tiny fraction of "The Invisible Women" in the MiB catalogs.

Jeri B.
PS. I would be more than happy to be a model for you sometime! :)


Your models are beautiful! I look forward to seeing what each is wearing every season.I loved it when you told their stories. Update us on their projects and be sure to introduce anyone new.

I wear your clothes in my busy life as a an educator, practice of medicine, role model, writer, mother, grandmother and mentor. Among other things...But I am also one of your plus size models in the real world. People always compliment me saying how nice I look and where do I get my clothes. Yes I take time with my hair and make-up. My shoes always look good. My clothes are made of good fabrics, stylish and well cared for. It does not diguise the fact that I am a large woman. The clothes, make up and hair are part of the package of an intelligent, busy, vital, important member of the world . You betcha I am a plus size model too.


Dear Sally,

Really liked the article about the plus sized models. So nice to read something positive about plus-size anything these days. Have always appreciated seeing the larger models wearing MIB clothes. By seeing them wearing the clothes and how they looked on their different body types, has made it easier for me to make choices for myself.

I hate that Layne Bryant, Women Within etc. use regular models. I asked someone in the stores why they did that and her reply was that "their customers did not want to see the larger models in the fashions"! I can not believe that is true. I think it is because some of the fashions are just so ugly and inappropriate for the larger figure that they do not want us to see them on a larger frame.

MIB has such classy and beautiful clothes, I just wish I had the $$ to afford more of them. I end up buying inferior stuff from the other companies because of their sales and lower prices. I know, I know, you get what you pay for, and believe me I go for MIB when ever I can.

Thanks again,
Betty C.


It is totally refreshing for me to see ample sized women as your models. I am a size 34 in shirts but a 28 in pants I am oddly shaped and yet I feel as if your clothing fits me perfectly. I am also a taller lady 6ft 1 in. I love the fact that your clothes are stylish and yet not badly priced. I just wish you had stores across the United States, I hate waiting for clothes...

Just a Idea you might want stores in major malls across the US because it would make it easier for people to get a wider variety of sizes not like Lane Bryant or the Avenue who stops at size 28 unless it's in a catalog.

THANK YOU For Reading

Dawny S.


Hello Sally,

There is an economic aspect to this whole argument as well. It has been found that plus-size women earn less for similar work, frequently get fewer promotions, and as a group hold lower ranking positions than their thin colleagues. This also distorts the market place in limiting the amount of money that us big women have to spend on fashion. More retail space is therefore given to the sale of small clothes as this group has more dispensable income.

However, the situation is so much better than it used to be, at least in North America. Most first line department stores did not even have a women's size department when I first joined the work force. Now I can even find my size at Saks! I live in Asia and finding fashion for big women is where US & Canada were 30 years ago. If we keep pushing, we will gradually push back the barriers of weightism.

I will save my diatribe on weightism and health for my next email.

Janet S.


It would be GREAT if more clothes were offered as they were a long time ago thru MIB made of all wonderful incredible COTTON! Not these awful blends that stick to a big and often sticky body. Here in the valley it gets very warm for more months of the year and we need and want COTTON!!!


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