I have been very fortunate to have major support for what I do here on this blog. I’ve had friends and family help me pick out blog shoot sites, take pictures and point out new industry updates that I may have missed due to my hectic schedule. And every once in a while they question what I decide to feature in my posts, but with recent events being what they are, I’ve noticed that these private exchanges have shifted. I’ve begun to get messages saying that with my academic background and intellect, my time and efforts would be better spent writing about social injustices instead of fashion. To be honest, I have been anticipating that comment for a while now. The very act of getting dressed is considered to be a necessary, yet frivolous, part of everyday life, so the pointing out that fashion plays a central role in society is met with denial and ambivalence. The thing is culture, race, socioeconomics, gender, capitalism/consumerism and even politics all intersect in fashion.
Everyone whether black, white, rich, poor, male, female, adult, child or teen interact with it in some capacity. Just think about the amount of effort we put into figuring out what to wear for everyday occasions like going to work, job interviews, graduations, dates, quinceañera parties and of course weddings. Fashion, even at its most simple, conveys culture, social status, income level, education, age, sexuality, and even nationalism.
One of the major reasons behind my decision to become a plus size fashion blogger was to discuss the aforementioned social issues as I am someone who had to unlearn my toxic self-hate after being constantly told that due to the texture of my hair, the color of my skin, my body type , my size and my income level meant I shouldn’t expect love, respect or nice clothes. I showcase my personal style to inspire women to try new kinds of outfits, but I am very aware that simply doing so is shattering many socially constructed concepts and ideals that is supported by the fashion industry, particularly that of beauty. If anything else, being a fashion blogger, in my humble opinion, is the best way to visually articulate body positivity.
I ensure that my body is represented.
I am seen and heard.
The body positive movement is one that I am incredibly glad exists, yet the misconception remains that this movement is only about pitting one size range against another (straight vs plus size) when it’s not. This isn’t about “shopping for clothes just to look cute on Instagram,”* this is about changing the world we live in; it is reshaping society’s perceptions of race, size and beauty so that no one has to fight for what they deserve as humans. Change is made of people, people doing different things to make the same point stand out and be significant. Everyone has a role to play in helping end the kind of racial bias and violence that is slowly becoming the norm. For me this is it. Being unapologetically me on this blog and social media. (Just to be clear, I’m not the first blogger to say this either, but black representation in media is totally necessary.)
I’m black, curvy, educated, Latina, plus size, poor, and short. I have opinions, a voice and a platform for it to be spread. So yes, I blog about fashion, if only to represent and amplify the narratives of disenfranchised people, be they of the working class, of color, women and/or plus size.
Disclaimer: I know that everyone can and will have their own opinions on this topic but keep in mind that any abusive comments will be removed.
*This is verbatim of what was said to me and sparked my need to write this post.