Have you ever walked into a clothing store and left feeling unsatisfied because:
a The clothes are too short (not tall)
b The clothes don’t fit otherwise (not big)
Okay so...That one store didn’t had the right stuff. So you move on to another. Then another. And before you know it, you’ve successfully exhausted the stores around with nothing to show.
What’s the deal with these clothing stores anyway? Are the big and tall people just not looking in the right places? Or does this market just not cater to big and tall people? Are we THAT behind in fashion inclusivity?
Luckily, there are methods that can help the big and tall moving amongst us achieve that fashion nirvana.
But first lets tackle the Big vs. Tall Debate
Big. Tall. Two different words that have long been confused as the same thing; especially when the employees have no concept of how clothes fit and look on big and tall people. Let’s demystify them.
In the fashion world, big refers to someone with large size chest, hip and waist. As for tall, any guy more than 6’ is blessed with this moniker.
As simple and easy as that.
However, you can be big AND tall, those body types are not mutually exclusive—as hard as mainstream fashion tries to imply.
Ok so that takes care of the perennial question. How can that help me?
You've got the imposing height, the broad shoulders, and legs for days.It’s time you dress that bod like the masterpiece it is!
So let’s begin, shall we?
Start by discarding the manufacturer-first mentality. Manufacturers are part of the problem. You’d be hard-pressed to find one that uses a uniform XL size category. For instance, Brand A’s size XL differs wildly from Brand B’s. There’s no standardization here folks. As a way of ‘solving’ the clothes-don’t-fit problem, the makers have rolled out 2XL, 3XL and 4XL sizes, all of which do not take into account the Big + Tall clothing conundrum.
Now its time to find clothes that fit and COMPLIMENT you. And to do this, I’d recommend you check out the Big And Tall Associates (BATA). They’re a bunch of corporate retailers that have laid out guidelines for big and tall men’s clothing. To put it simply, these are the people you should be asking. Their efforts have ensured that you have access to clothes that fit you comfortably, are designed according to your body type, and keep you looking awesome on the regular. And the icing on the cake, BATA has locally-produced and designed clothes, giving you the chance to uplift local communities and the economy. That's reinvesting in ourselves.
The next time you venture into a retail clothing outlet, ask them if they are BATA-affiliated. This can save you a lot of time and trouble. Call your local stores too. Never again surrender at the doors of stores that don’t cater to your glorious big and tall selves.