FIT Launches Plus-Size Design Course Led by Designer Mallorie Dunn
The fashion landscape has gradually shifted towards greater size inclusivity. In 2014, Eloquii gained independence, H&M expanded their online size range in 2013, and Target introduced Ava & Viv in 2015. Even Anthropologie joined the plus-size market in 2019. Nevertheless, societal attitudes seemed to regress with the resurgence of Y2K fashion, an obsession with extreme diet culture, and the popularity of weight loss medications in 2023. This transformation clashed with the reality that approximately 68% of American women wear size 14 or above, while only a minuscule percentage of fashion week looks cater to this demographic, driven by fatphobia and sustainability concerns. Mallorie Dunn, the founder of SmartGlamour, recognized this discrepancy and took action. Launching SmartGlamour in 2014, she provided customizable, size-inclusive clothing, aiming to address the issues plaguing the fashion industry, including its exclusivity and discriminatory attitudes. Dunn's dedication extended to her teaching roles at FIT, where she offered courses in small business production and inclusive patternmaking, both of which sought to empower the next generation of designers to create clothing accessible to all. Recognizing that fast fashion, epitomized by brands like Shein, often filled the void for stylish plus-size clothing, Dunn's dual approach held significance. By teaching these techniques, she aimed to catalyze a ripple effect, expanding the choices available to plus-size individuals and liberating them from the constraints of fast fashion.