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The fashion industry still has a long way to go when it comes to the plus-size customer, but slowly, strides are being made. There are more plus-size models on the runway than in years past, and some great companies are advocating for and supporting change in the industry. At the very least, there are more places to shop than ever before.
11 Honoré, a luxury e-commerce site for women who wear sizes 10 through 20, officially joins that list this week. For the launch, co-founders Patrick Herning and Kathryn Retzer have partnered with a small (but not insubstantial) list of designers to offer high-end plus-size clothing for women who haven’t historically had many options in the luxury space.
“High-end, luxury designers were completely missing from the retail landscape in sizes 12 and above,” says Retzer. “This is something that hasn’t existed for our customer, and we’re looking to close this gap in all categories and bring her the same luxury fashion that’s available for women sizes 0 to 10.”
For now, the site sells apparel only — Herning and Retzer felt that plus-size women have enough places to buy luxury handbags, but not nearly enough places to buy designer clothes made for their bodies.
The site is kicking off fall with an edited collection from brands like Brandon Maxwell, Michael Kors, Christian Siriano, Prabal Gurung, Zac Posen, and Baja East, with Adam Lippes and La Ligne both coming soon. Essentially, Herning and Retzer worked with designers to select pieces from their runway collections that were then (properly) manufactured for sizes 10 though 20. Right now the selection isn’t huge, but it’s a solid start. “We hope more designers will see the opportunities, and work with us to reach as many women as possible,” says Herning.
Retzer adds that that’s an open invitation for brands that haven’t been able to launch plus-sizes in their own collections. “For designers who don’t have the infrastructure to expand their sizing, we’re investing in the technology and pattern makers to ensure that our customer has the best designer styles available,” she says.
That said, 11 Honoré still has a way to go. Right now sizes cap off at 20 (for reference, popular plus-size brand Eloquii sells through a size 28; Premme, a new line by bloggers Gabi Gregg and Nicolette Mason, goes up to a size 30, as does Torrid). The website itself could use some fine-tuning, particularly when it comes to representation of women on the larger end of that 10 to 20 size spectrum. However, in a world where brands largely ignore women over a size 12, it’s a welcome addition to the shopping landscape.
What do you think? If this is your size range, would you spend more on designer clothing? Let us know in the comments or in the Racked Lounge on Facebook.