2012 is nearly here, and I'm looking forward to a fresh start with a clean slate. I'm also looking forward to what the plus size industry will do next, and I thought I'd share what I would like to see happen in the new year :
1. Focus Groups! - Personally, I feel many brands are out of touch with their customers. They really don't know who their customers are, and what their customers want. Focus groups are great for clear communication, utilizing information, and to help improve your relationship with your targeted demographic. Now I know many of you are thinking, "that's what surveys are for!", but focus groups are more personal and it reassures your customer that their opinion and thoughts are being heard. I think anyone who owns/works for a plus size fashion company should invest in regular focus groups, because this will help your business in the long run.
2. Diversity!! - It's going to be 2012, and I still can't believe there is such a lack of diversity amongst the fashion industry. I feel like, I'm seeing the same model but dressed in a different outfit! I want to see someone my size (26+) modelling clothes in catalogues and fashion shoots. I want to see an array of different ethnic models who don't have the typical "hourglass" figure, because as we all know, plus size women are shaped differently! No curvy figure is ever the same. In the words of the fabulous Alissa Wilson (Stylish Curves) :
"I am one of those consumers who buy's alot when I see someone that I can identify with promoting the brand."
3. Reasonable Prices - For the longest time, plus size clothing has cost more than the average sized woman's clothing. I know plus size retailers set higher prices to cover costs etc, but if I'm going to be paying £50 for one garment, I expect it to be (at least) decent quality and not fall apart after a one or two wears. I'd like to see more affordable plus size clothing available in the new year.
4. Trendsetter - It seems plus size retailers/brands are struggling to keep up with current trends, and often hit the mark after a trend has sailed. Believe it or not, there are plus size women who want to be on trend and fashionable! Therefore, I'd like to see plus size brands get creative and make trends their own (who knows it might blossom into a new trend, never know until you try!), instead of following them loosely.
Side Note : Lauren of 'Pocket Rocket Fashion' did a fab post on this, which you can find here.
5. Events Galore - I love nothing more than socialising and having a good time with people, and it would be amazing if there were more plus size events throughout the year! Fashion shows, discussion panels, and preview showings of future collections are some of the events that I would like to see more of this year in the plus size industry.
Side Note : In February, Plus London 2 will take place! So if you're in London, regardless of your size pop on down and have a great time! Claire of 'A Monkey Fashionista' has all the details, which can be found here.
What would you like to see from the plus size industry in 2012?
Let me know!