There’s no such thing as healthy and fat.
In a move designed to cater for the diverse female body types of Australia, Target has announced the introduction of size 16 mannequins. They were released on Thursday, September 10 in Target’s Chadstone store, and will be placed in over 49 stores nationwide. These ‘normal’ sized dolls are an attempt to acknowledge that many women other than sizes 6-8 buy clothes, and give larger ladies a sense of body confidence not previously afforded to them.
Sounds great! What could be better than encouraging women to be proud of their bodies, whatever the shape or size?
I’ll tell you what’s better; encouraging women to eat healthily, exercise more, and not be complacent about a body that’s beyond the bounds of a healthy BMI.
I am all for average sized mannequins. If you looked up the definition of “average female body type” in the dictionary, there would be a picture of me. My shirt/dress size is a 10, my pants size is a 12, and I am 5 foot 5 and a half. However; I go to the gym regularly, I avoid sugary food, I don’t drink, and I watch my portion sizes. Why do I do this? Aside from the fact that I really, really like Zumba, I would LOVE to fit into clothes that are size 8-10, rather than 10-12.
This isn’t because I have some terrible body complex; on the contrary, I am really happy with how I look. But I know that if I kicked a couple of kilos, I would be more comfortable in more clothes, and have less trouble shopping for them. That’s it. Simple. Tiny mannequins don’t make me anxious; I will never be a size 6 as I don’t have the bone structure. However, they do motivate me to get fitter and healthier than I already am. Surely this is a good thing?
Let’s look at what Target Australia’s Managing Director, Stuart Machin, had to say. “The average customer is a size 14, so it’s baffling that the Australian retail industry still uses a standard size 8 mannequin…We want to change the way Australian retailers represent women, and we hope that these mannequins will help to start a new conversation in the fashion industry. We know how important it is to be accessible for real Australians. We’ve always tried to cater for all sizes – from introducing our petites line with our Dannii for Target range right through to the Belle Curves collection that caters for women up to size 26.”
Whoa! Back up a bit! Firstly; if the average customer is a 14, then why not have size 14 mannequins? That is usually a perfectly healthy size. I know my booty expands to a 14 around Christmas, and I’m the poster-girl for average. Secondly; what does Mr. Machin mean by “real” and “everyday” women? Last time I checked, women were trying to move past being defined by their body type. It should have nothing to do with what makes us ‘real’. Reverse body shaming, anyone?
Here’s the thing; size 16 – 26 is not a ‘body type’. I know many women who are this size and are perfectly happy, but they would be much, MUCH happier if they dropped a few pounds. Yes, some women have medical conditions/chronic injuries that unfortunately effect their fitness, but most do not. There is a temptation to get wound up in the ‘love your body’ movement, but it should not be an excuse to maintain a less than healthy lifestyle.
Love your body by keeping it as fit and healthy as you can. Size 16 mannequins may give women a better shopping experience, but they do not give us incentive to avoid the obesity crisis. True body confidence comes with a healthy lifestyle and a healthy mind. Remember; the two are not mutually exclusive.
Soon there will be no such thing as a ‘girls’ or ‘boys’ building set, or even pink and blue for that matter – at least in Target, that is.
In an Australian first, the national retailer has announced that it will be removing gender labels on products in the toys, home and entertainment departments and instead replacing them with more gender neutral signage.
In a recent statement, the megastore revealed that customers had been complaining – particularly via social media – about certain signs throughout the store that suggested toys or products based on gender.
“Guests have pointed out in some departments like Toys, Home or Entertainment, suggesting products by gender is unnecessary,” said the retailer. “We heard you and we agree.”
Pointing out that Target “never want guests or their families to feel frustrated or limited by the way things are presented,” the spokesperson announced that the company will be ditching gender signs across childrens’ toys, bedding and books, and even going as far as to remove coloured wall paper that makes reference to boy/girl in the toy aisles.
Gender signage is going to remain in clothing departments, however, with the national retailer advising that it “makes sense” due to sizing differences. You can expect to see the changes roll out over the next few months.
What do you think about the changes?
Image via Pinterest
The retail world sure was a lot more boring before high street designer collaborations. When H&M launched its first designer collaboration ten years ago, it was a game changer. Nowadays, it’s hard to find a label that hasn’t participated in some sort of high street collaboration.
Besides H&M, Target has proved to be a department store with its finger on the pulse, having launched some very successful capsule collections by designers such as Stella McCartney and Missoni. Their next big coup? The Target x Dion Lee collection, which will be available on July 2.
Dion Lee is without a doubt one of Australia’s best designer exports who is known and loved for his incredibly well tailored clothes and a look that’s both feminine and feminist. So, what can we expect from Lee’s collection for Target?
If you liked Alexander Wang x H&M, chances are you’re going to love Target x Dion Lee. The collection focuses on active wear and the very popular sport luxe trend. Sports bras, running shorts and leggings might make you think that this is purely a gym wear collection, but it’s more than that.
Body-hugging dresses and pencil skirts are part of it, too, as well as a pair of sexy black mules and a mini skirt. Colour-wise, Lee isn’t straying far from his usual aesthetics with lots of black and blue involved and a bit of orange for the more sporty items.
Even though there are only 35 pieces in the collection, it seems as if it could please a wide variety of women with the designs being both functional and sophisticated and “reflecting the lifestyle of the contemporary woman.” With prices ranging from $25 to $119, it will definitely be one of the more affordable designer lines (in comparison, Alexander Wang x H&M was priced up to $349).
If Missoni x Target was anything to go by, you will have to be quick to get your hands on a Dion Lee item as Target’s website crashed minutes after launching, with most items selling out super quick. Our favorites from Dion Lee x Target? The mules and laser cut bomber jacket – fingers crossed we’ll get our hands on them!
Images via Fashion Journal and Target
Target Australia has upped the fashion ante for this year’s Spring Racing Carnival, releasing a gorgeous 18-piece spring racing collection and becoming the shopping destination for the 2014 racing season.
For the first time, the retailer has united with fashion photographer Georges Antoni for the collection campaign shoot. The Australian-born fashion photographer’s work has been published in magazines such as Harper’s Bazaar, Vogue, Elle, Vanity Fair, Oyster and V Magazine.
The spring carnival collection comprises special occasion dresses fit for racing festivities and spans across two central themes – monochrome and sorbet floral – both hugely on trend this season.
Gillian Ridley-Whittle, Target’s general manager of womenswear, said:
“It has been a delight to team up with well-known fashion photographer Georges Antoni for our spring carnival photo shoot. Georges is a true professional and he has captured our pieces in a beautiful, complementary way. I think Australian women are going to love what they see.
“Monochrome is a timeless fashion statement. Black and white dresses from the collection are both classic and versatile and can be styled with neutral metallics or a pop of colour for a bolder look.
“In addition to monochrome, nothing says ‘Spring dressing’ like feminine florals and a lush colour palette. These dresses are your outfit heroes. They have great flow and are perfect for the sun-kissed days and balmy nights of spring and well into the summer months.”
The spring racing collection is available in store and online at www.target.com.au now, with prices starting at just $49.