Pakistani fashion brands have evolved over the years. Experts have observed the market closely and have taken up strategies to cater to their customers belonging to different categories successfully. However, the plus-size has often been ignored by fashion brands and retailers in the country especially when it comes to pret.
Plus-size women such as me had to flock to the market to buy loose cloth and other items of liking to be stitched. More often, I would pick up something unstitched from the mall. Even after making an effort, the chances of the tailor sewing the outfit to my liking were never met as not everyone can put together an outfit that compliments your body type.
The Latest Campaign, “Now or Never” by Khaadi
The latest campaign by Khaadi, “Now or Never”, features a Plus-size model and is a breath of fresh air. Rather than having a separate line for the plus size women, Khaadi has channeled the same clothes to fit the plus sized women. Moreover, the fashion film includes both plus size model and regular size models which reflects inclusivity at its best.
Why is it Important for Brands to Focus on Inclusivity?
Even though Khaadi had placed sizes 16 and 18 on their shelves some time ago, they were never advertised with plus-size models. Unless brands don’t portray that they are all about inclusivity (even though they are), it is difficult for the product to reach their designated customer.
We spoke to Khaadi’s Director of Corporate Communications, Anjum Nida Rahman, regarding their latest campaign. Here is what she had to say:
1) We liked the campaign and the fact that it included a plus size model. It is also significant for Khaadi to mainstream this customer category. Why now?
Khaadi is an inclusive, accessible brand and our designs cater to the multiple facets of a woman’s personality. We are committed to extending this belief to include a broad range of body shapes. We feel this is culturally relevant and reflective of women today.
2) Currently, plus sizes are available till Sizes 16-18. Are more sizes expected? Do you plan to develop a separate line for plus-sized women?
Fashion and styles are ever-evolving, so is Khaadi. Our designs appeal to women who are ever-evolving in their lifestyle, and journey of life. We believe there is an opportunity for extended sizes and are looking at possibilities of increasing our styles to include not only different body shapes but fashion concepts as well. Khaadi keeps innovating.
Finding Comfort in the Khaadi Store: Discovering Sizes 16 and 18
I know for a fact that I discovered Khaadi’s sizes 16 and 18 when I stepped into a Khaadi store to window shop almost 2 years ago. I was surprised that I fit into something off the rack and that too in Pakistan. I instantly bought the top. The feeling was incomprehensible because I only experienced this whilst traveling overseas. From there onwards, I always found comfort in the Khaadi store whenever I was at the mall as I usually found some options for myself. I also discovered a handful of brands catering to the plus-size category at the mall – however, their designs and cuts were not up to my liking.
Zainab Kamran Saeed, a plus-sized fashion blogger shared her opinion on the matter, she said:
The campaign actually made me very happy because this looks like a point where we’re normalizing bodies of different kinds and shapes. Generally, even if we’re showing a woman who is different, women who do not meet the standard/expectations of society. Both women in the picture are put in such a way that it looks like it’s a special case when it’s not, we’re all the same, all the same people with the same kind of feelings, same kind of behaviors. It’s just that our bodies look different.
Finally, for the first time ever, somebody is normalizing that, and this gives me a lot of hope, Maybe one day there’s going to be a time where at least with me, women would stop asking why I’m this confident and or maybe how am I this confident when they should not be asking that because I do not have a reason to not be confident. But because apparently being fat is a special case, people do question it. So, yeah, I absolutely love the fact that Khaadi is normalizing different types of women.
We have seen a couple of brands working on plus-size clothing. I don’t think they were normalizing the idea. I think our nation feels that the idea of clothing fat women is to make them wear sacks and that is hilarious but Khaadi didn’t do that. The model was wearing regular clothes similar to what smaller size models were wearing. I’m glad Khaadi didn’t come up with a special capsule collection that only comprises clothes similar to potato sacks.
Plus Size Women Limited to Shop In-Stores
A top with a slim-fit cut would look better on someone who has a pear-shaped body while a loose-fitting cut on an apple-shaped body. So it was vital for me to try it on at the mall in-store. I would be relieved to find something that would fit and match my style. Some pieces at Khaadi would compliment my body type while others wouldn’t, depending on the cut. During the pandemic, the experience of shopping multiple times from Khaadi online was not same as in-store. I figured that the decision of what might suit me could only be made in stores and not online as the models used to showcase 16 and 18 sizes on the site were either a size 6 or an 8 which is now addressed but there’s still a long way to go.
Shopping Online & the Pandemic
I wondered why plus-size models were not thought about before. After all, plus-size women would make better decisions online, if the outfit would suit their body type or not, depending on how it looked on the model. The representation is great, and I appreciate the brand for its efforts, but even today, there is a lot of space for improvement to make the shopping experience for plus-size women better online. In fact, this is the best time to work on it as more and more people prefer shopping online now, due to the pandemic.
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