You might’ve heard the news that designer Rachel Roy is creating a range of “plus-size” clothing for her contemporary line Rachel Rachel Roy, and maybe you threw some glitter in the air, and that’s great. More options for curvier women, thank you baby Kanye in the manger.
Except this is where my feelings get a little murky on the matter. In addition to her contemporary line, which starts at $39, the designer has a high-end line called Rachel Roy that’s re-launching in September and hitting stores in 2017. And apparently we won’t be #blessed with luxe clothing in Rachel Roy sizes. When explaining the difference between Rachel Roy and Rachel Rachel Roy (confused yet?) to WWD, the designer said:
“Rachel Roy is the bigger sister to Rachel Rachel Roy. She is at a point in her career where she can afford that price point. Everything can last in her wardrobe, whereas Rachel Rachel Roy can have more fun with prints and colors and take more chances.”
Cool. So, another chance for a designer to abuse animal prints? Maybe. Perhaps the extended sizes for the Rachel Rachel Roy clothing line will be the new looks that pump life into your veins, but I don’t like the message Roy (the actual person) is sending here. That’s like saying, eh, women with curves don’t need wardrobe staples. They don’t need clothing that will last. So here’s another hideous bold printed flowy top to add to your collection and good luck finding something you actually want to wear to the office.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s nice that Roy is expanding her business model and weaving new body-inclusive designs, even if it’s only for her fun line that’s sold in Macy’s. Any ounce of recognition helps. But the idea that curvier women are only good enough for little sister threads is offensive. How many times does an advocate need to scream “STOP WITH THE CRAZY PRINTS ALREADY!” before designers actually get it? Clearly Beth Ditto is up on things, and, regarding her own new clothing line, she just told Vogue, “The idea is to make mainstay shapes that are staples that you can wear forever and rely on. Because that exists for thin people, but it does not exist for big people yet.” Are you listening, Rachel?
If Rachel Roy really wanted to do us a solid, she would’ve included a “plus-size” range in her upcoming high-end line. And maybe she will down the road, but forgive me for not breaking out the eggnog with this news.