Outfitblogging: When there are only three possible answers to the question, “Hey, where did you get that?”

By | July 22, 2009


Click through to the Flickr version for outfit info.

I’ve talked pretty extensively in the past about the fatshion scarcity one discovers once one has to shop over a particular size. There’s just not much out there. A corollary to this is that there’s always the real possibility of running into someone wearing the same thing as you.

This was much more a problem for me in Ye Old Clubgoing Days of Yore, and when Torrid was still fancifully edgy and goth-tinged. There were certain Torrid dresses I wouldn’t touch (who remembers the black stretch-cotton halters with the skull print in pink or purple? I do) because I knew I’d see them on every fat girl in the room. And I’ve got issues with playing twinsies with anyone unless it was intentionally planned in advance.

I ordered the dress above from Evans, and the irony of going international when I live in what is arguably the country with the best plus-size options in the world is not lost on me. But it is a rare case in which I could go out relatively assured that nobody else would have my outfit on. Folks may occasionally take umbrage at my penchant for layers or my accessory choices, but ultimately I’m not in a place where I get to just buy a dress and have the dress stand for itself. There are exceptions to this (dresses from eShakti are often plenty stylish enough as standalone garments) but often I find myself experimenting – or catalog whispering – in order to develop an outfit that looks interesting to me. When there are only three brick-and-mortar answers to the question, “Where did you get that?”, anyone aspiring to do more than allow their fatshion expression be dictated by Lane Bryant’s seasonal whims is forced to get creative.

Case in point: the Beth Ditto domino dress, which any fashionable fatty could spot a mile off and know what it was and where it came from immediately. I was really dubious this dress could be worked. The novelty print! The stretch knit! I’m being honest, and I’ve been a staunch defender of the Ditto/Evans collaboration. However, I’m happy to report I was wrong, as Natalie of Axis of Fat capably demonstrates here. She looks fabulous, and provides a nice illustration of one of my Fatshionista maxims: You can’t let plus-size fashion run you, kids. You gotta take control and bend it to your will.

And now, a quick report on my Evans-to-the-US experience, since I’ve only ordered from them once before, back when they first instituted US shipping: Order placement was smoother than it was last time; no more weird required fields that don’t apply to US addresses. Shipping was very fast. I was expecting to wait a couple weeks but my package reached me in Boston within six days of ordering – that’s less time than it sometimes takes me to receive stuff from the West Coast. The garment quality is… meh. It’s okay, but not great. I would put it a half-step down from Lane Bryant and more on a par with Target, truthfully. The fabric on the dresses I bought is quite thin, and neither are lined. That said, as the photo above illustrates, they do look fabulous on, and the fit is about what I’d expect. To account for the size difference, I went up two sizes, though I probably only needed to go up one, but I figured better to get something a bit too big that I can alter to fit, rather than have it arrive too small and be of no use to me at all.

I would probably order from Evans again if they had something really appealing, but for now this site is just a once-in-awhile diversion for me.

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