This post has come about as a result of a kickstarter campaign by New Vintage Lady, Shelley Johnson. A pattern maker of vintage style clothes, she has eschewed the term “plus-sized” in favour of the word “stout”.
I like that. I have never liked the term “curvy”. For me, it is a word that is too cute for someone looking up at 50. “Plus-size” leaves one to ask “size bigger than whom”. And while I have claimed the term “fat” to describe myself, I find myself often having to deal with skinny women who are uncomfortable with it.
No, I am not thin-shaming here (and do not get me started with that). This is what I experience: the women I know who are built like me do not feel the need to apologize for their frame.
And by the by, I still hold that to refer to a person size 12 to 16 as “plus-sized” is ridiculous. I was a size 12 when I was 12 and I wasn’t anywhere near a “plus-size” then. Why the change?
Stout is a perfectly good word for those of us size 18 and over. Another word, one that I will use to describe myself is “robust“. Unlike “voluptuous”, which is a perfectly good word but takes too long to say and tends to make one envisage Sofia Vergera, robust brings to my mind someone like me – an hourglass figure that is thickening in the middle.