Since I was very little, from around age 8, I have been a huge lover of fashion and expressing myself. I have always gravitated towards bold colours and patterns, forever mixing and matching trends with the items which speak to my soul personally. In fact, one of my earliest responses to the question “what do you want to be when you’re older” was a fashion designer or something in that world.
(Images of child Monica looking arguably very unfashionable but loving fashion anyways)
However, fashion was also always a source of body shame for me. Searching “outfit inspo” on Pinterest and Instagram always came back with the same results; skinny, white, able-bodied women. Coupled with my love for magazines at the time and the phrase “nothing tastes as good as skinny feels” circling, it was no doubt that by age 11 I had begun displaying disordered eating habits which progressed into bulimia, binge eating, and body dysmorphia by the time I was 16. I remember noticing that my body didn’t look like the other girls around me from as young as age 8, always seeing myself and feeling like “the fat kid”.
Be it the campaign pictures, the sizing, or the way fatness as a concept is treated as a before, fatphobia still heavily surrounds the fashion world. Trends continue to be gatekeeped by brands and influencers by keeping sizing mostly below UK size 18 leaving plus size fashion lovers left with brands that are either mostly overpriced or mostly unethical and unsustainable. Indeed, even charity shops and small sustainable boutiques normally cut their sizing off in a way that is harmful to the plus-size community. What’s more, is that the brands which are directed towards plus-size bodies tend to carry styles that make many feel as though they are hiding their bodies and are being made to be more modest than they might like.
Recovering from my eating disorder and internalized fatphobia has led to the formation of The Fat Kid. As a fat gal myself, I want to give plus-size babes and baddies a place to shop that is both sustainable and fashionable whilst also removing the triggering task of filtering through all the size 6’s and size 10’s in the charity shops. The Fat Kid is a boutique of clothing found in charity shops and second-hand/ waste warehouses from size UK 14 to hopefully size UK 30 (where the stock is available).
Each outfit is styled by me with accessories and adjustments to help give some inspo for those who might struggle with constructing complete items from individual pieces. Indeed, I know that I personally buy clothes individually, seeing items which I enjoy and buying them without taking into consideration whether I have anything to pair them with when I get home. This is why I normally tend to have 20 floral tops and 20 unmatching patterned bottoms!
Styling outfits this way on The Fat Kid will hopefully take that wasteful stage out of the buying process leaving you with complete and versatile outfits which you can buy whole or individually, whichever suits you best.
The main message of The Fat Kid is that we don’t have to be determined by our fatness. We don’t have to let fatphobia rule our lives and our hobbies. We can be the “fashionable” fat kid, the “creative” fat kid. Let yourself wear the colourful prints, the trendy styles, the crop tops you deserve fashion just as much as everyone else. The Fat Kid is about reclaiming who we all were before we were conditioned to demonise our bodies and taught to hide behind “flattering” clothes.
At The Fat Kid, we say f*** it, this summer is hot fat kid summer!
Reclaim yourself and join the fat revolution.
Author: Monica Poucheva-Murray