Finally… The $21.5 Billion Plus Size Market Comes of Age
John LaRosa, Research Director from Marketdata Enterprises, Inc., shared this press release with me about the $21.5 Billion Plus Size Market Coming of Age… and I said out loud, “Finally”!
Let me clarify… I have known for years that our curvy sisters are out there shopping in droves, (Yes, I attend events all the time where I SEE YOU decked out to the nines)!
While our community understands the importance of having stylish options to spend our hard-earned dollars on, as well as amazing companies and designers to choose from, it has been the fashion industry at large that many times has been hesitant to embrace designing for plus size.
A report like this WILL make an impact in moving our industry and community of curves along in a vibrant and exciting way!
Let me share a few of the major finding from this groundbreaking plus size market report…
Revenues… Marketdata analysts estimate that in 2015, the plus-size market in the U.S. was worth $21.5 billion. Sales are expected to grow by 4.1% annually, reaching just under $26 billion by 2020. Fully 95% of sales now are related to clothing.
The “average” American women now wears a size 14 (with “plus-sizes, often classified as 14 to 34, accounting for 67 percent of the population). Typically, plus size customers are female, between the ages of 30 – 45, and come from all income levels and occupations.
Model agency billings related to plus size models are estimated at $64 million, and Marketdata estimates that $110 million in business for dating services relates to large persons.
Plus size models have become more mainstream during the past five years, making the covers of magazines such as Sports Illustrated and others. Designers are creating more clothes for plus size women and there are annual events such as Full Figure Fashion Week and CurvyCon, held in New York City. All of this is driving higher demand and sales.
According to recent research by ModCloth, 88% of plus-size women said they would buy more clothing if they had better options. So, there is still plenty of room for growth.
Old stigmas about plus-size shopping are melting away. Bolstered by a cadre of shapely models and public figures from Kim Kardashian to Nicki Minaj, advocacy from plus-size bloggers, and fitness trends such as CrossFit—whose adherents have larger body shapes that do not fit into ordinary sizing.
There are extra production costs passed on to the consumer for plus-size apparel, which often is less profitable than non-plus size clothing. For brick-and-mortar retailers, limited floor space has dictated whether they carry such lines. Plus sizes historically have been one of the first to go when another product starts driving sales. Higher price points reflect the selection of unique fabrics and design elements.
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