Sunday links, 1/4/15

trees in the snow

No, it hasn’t snowed here recently–this is from Thanksgiving weekend. Here’s hoping for more snow soon!

Fa(t)shion
13 times Gabourey Sidibe reified her fashion icon and role model status in 2014.
-Casey reviews Re/Dress teggings and Undersummers slip shorts.
12 plus size bloggers who broke the internet in 2014.
-Eloquii will soon roll out a few items in sizes 26 and 28. This is good news, but I have to wonder: why do women who wear 26+ have to ask to be included, and wait for that inclusion to happen gradually? Why do women who wear 30+ still get left out?
How Delia’s conquered the ’90s.
7 times the visible belly outline made an appearance–and inspired me to celebrate my own curves.
Sustainable style: the joy of Chubby Cartwheels!
Plus size uniforms for kids are causing concern about the “childhood obesity epidemic”–but what does said concern do for the kids’ body image?
Why Rum & Coke uses only plus size models.

Fat Acceptance
Make a New Year’s Revolution.
Murder at the intersection of fat and black.
Why fat matters: why isn’t weight stigma seen as a social justice issue?
Let’s hold doctors accountable: a new form of activism?
I had hyperhidrosis in my hands, feet, and underarms–and it was a total enemy to my body image.
-Awesome: a Chrome extension that replaces occurrences of “lose weight” with “get pizza.”

frozen lake surrounded by snowy trees
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In defense of the question, “Where do you get your confidence?”

gabourey sidibe giving a speech, wearing a red wrap dress

Gabourey Sidibe: fabulous fat inspiration forever. (source)

There’s been a lot of critique lately of people asking fat (or in some cases, Hollywood-fat) celebrities where they get their confidence. Gabourey Sidibe talked about it in her wonderful speech at the Ms. Foundation Gala:

One of the first things people usually ask me is, “Gabourey, how are you so confident?” I hate that. I always wonder if that’s the first thing they ask Rihanna when they meet her. “RiRi! How are you so confident?” Nope. No. No. But me? They ask me with that same incredulous disbelief every single time. “You seem so confident! How is that?”

Mindy Kaling also talked about it not too long ago:

“I always get asked, ‘Where do you get your confidence?’ I think people are well meaning, but it’s pretty insulting. Because what it means to me is, ‘You, Mindy Kaling, have all the trappings of a very marginalized person. You’re not skinny, you’re not white, you’re a woman. Why on earth would you feel like you’re worth anything?’”

I think there’s a lot of truth to Sidibe’s and Kaling’s analyses–people are often shocked to find that fat people, especially fat women of color, have the gall to love their own bodies. Some thin people do find confident fat people puzzling and disturbing: it challenges their assumptions, their privilege, all the work they’ve put into avoiding fatness.

But at the same time, I don’t think that type of reasoning is the only one that drives the question, and I think it does us a disservice to pretend it is.

The question can just as easily come from people, whether thin or fat, who are struggling to feel comfortable in their own skin and are looking for advice. People who see a non-conventionally-attractive woman daring to be confident in the face of a society that says she shouldn’t, and think, “Wow, I want to be like that–what’s her secret?”

Let’s face it: it is an accomplishment to build self-confidence in a world that constantly reminds you you’re lesser-than, that your worth depends on conforming to an incredibly narrow standard of beauty. For many, perhaps most, fat people–and for plenty of women of all shapes and sizes–confidence doesn’t come easily or naturally. It takes constant work to root out society’s shame and stigma, to stop listening to the messages all around you and start believing in your own power.

That’s something that deserves to be celebrated. That’s something we should ask our role models about–because it’s important to draw roadmaps for our own journeys of dealing with internalized racism, sexism, and fat-phobia. It’s important to make that struggle visible, to remind each other that we’re not alone.

Sunday links, 5/4/14

calico cat sitting in red lawn chair on a porch

My feline friend Sophie, who likes to come hang out on my porch.

Happy Star Wars Day–May the Fourth be with you! 😉

Fa(t)shion
Johnny Weir’s hat just won the Kentucky Derby.
(85 pieces of) proof that you can rock a bikini at any size!
-I love the Big Fat Flea’s fatshion features, and I hope to make it to their event someday.
-These gender neutral children’s clothes are great.
-Nicki Minaj = fashion inspiration forever.
-Leah reviews the Big Bloomers Company anti-chub-rub shorts. I’ve had good luck with similar shorts from the Thigh Society.
How to rock a tulle skirt without looking like you’re in a ballerina costume.

Fat Acceptance
-Two awesome fat events coming up in California: Fatty Fun in the Sun in Oakland, and Second Helpings Visual Art Exhibition and Performance Fatinee in San Francisco.
-The latter event needs some support to make it possible. Two other fat-related projects that could use your support: the Fired Fat Girl Travel Fund, and the Fat Nutritionist’s goal of becoming a radical dietician. (How messed-up is it that becoming a dietician requires a more-than-full-time, nine-month-long unpaid internship? Michelle shouldn’t have to turn to the internet to be able to pursue her chosen career.)
Read Gabourey Sidibe’s wonderful speech from the Ms. Foundation Gala. Love her!
-Lesley writes about the awesomeness that is the Adipositivity Project.
-Lonie takes on the myth that when you accept your body and stop trying to lose weight, you’ll lose weight.
-I love this way of looking at stretch marks.
Fat acceptance, like Batman, has no limits.

Bellydancing to Adele = awesome.
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Monday links, 1/20/14

Female sumo wrestler (source)

Remembering Martin Luther King, Jr.
Letters from a YSI jail
Most of you have no idea what Martin Luther King actually did.
MLK Boulevard: a snapshot of King’s dream deferred.
This piece by Ta Nehisi-Coates isn’t directly about MLK, but it’s relevant and so important. 

Fa(t)shion
An ASOS maternity fit review and a SWAK rant
-I’m disappointed but not surprised to hear that ASOS has often stolen designs from indie designers
-More tutu options: this shop, which makes custom tutus in any size for an extra $10, and this plus size tutu.
-Re/Dress will soon be carrying menswear/butchwear!
-Skorch’s Royal Issue is now live.
-The Advanced Style hat party looks like so much fun.
-Ragen writes about fashion-bashing and Gabourey Sidibe; Melissa reminds us that it’s ok to cry, that brash indifference to fat hatred can be great but shouldn’t be the only socially acceptable response. 
San Francisco finds new life for old clothes through a recycling program.
-Evie from Work It, Own It, Use It! is selling some super-cute clothes. I’m especially in love with this floral cardi, but it’s too small for me–one of you should buy it so I can enjoy it vicariously. Same with this Domino Dollhouse bow out skirt, which I love love but wouldn’t wear because I don’t do high waists or zippers.

I love this short documentary about the Sapeurs, a subculture of stylish men in the Congo.

Fat Acceptance
A world without fat people
Chris Christie and pulling the red handle.
Research, the media, and “obesity”: a case study.
-Melissa debunks yet another myth about fat people, that we want to force everyone to find us attractive
-Brodie writes about the lack of fat representation in the media beyond characters who are walking jokes.

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If I were Gabourey Sidibe’s stylist, part 2

I had so much fun coming up with ideas for Gabby to wear that I decided to go ahead and put together some complete outfits.  I had to stop at five because otherwise I would have kept making outfits all day…

You can click each picture to get to the Polyvore set, which includes links to each item.

Gabourey Sidibe alternative outfit 5
Gabourey Sidibe alternative outfit 1
Gabourey Sidibe alternative outfit 4
Gabourey Sidibe alternative outfit 3
Gabourey Sidibe alternative outfit 2

So, Harper’s, when are you going to hire me? 😉

Friday Links, 8/9/13

Mwahahaha! Taken by The Meanwhile Project at Figment Boston.

Fa(t)shion
-Erin has more ideas of things Gabourey Sidibe could have worn in Harper’s Bazaar.
Tripp NYC has a few plus size items available online, and is working on more!
Various exciting fatshion news, including H&M finally selling their clothes online in the US.
Beth Ditto wears Gaultier for her Hawaii wedding, and looks amazing.
-There’s so much fatshion-spiration in Offbeat Bride’s plus size brides Pinterest board.

Fat Acceptance
Virgie Tovar interviews Rachel, a fat-positive personal trainer.
On the necessity for real-world fat communities.
-The book Fatropolis sounds amazing–it’s definitely going on my reading list.
Unintentionally inspirational: the Lumpy Space Princess.
Fat, fibromyalgia, and exercise.

Climate and Sustainability
David Roberts wants to live in a baugruppe, and now I do too.
-A new study shows that today’s technology could be used to power the world with renewable energy–all that’s needed is the political will to do it.
-Bethany uses the Princess Bride as a metaphor for finding the tools to save the world.
Like shopping at local businesses? Now you can invest in them, too.

Everything Else
Immigration is a feminist issue–we need to treat it that way.
-Love this: Dear daughter, I hope you have some fucking awesome sex.
Lady Gaga has a burqa problem. UGH.
-Sarah Kendzior exposes the economic forces behind the myth of “opting out.”
The chronic pain PSA.
Should feminists be critical of compulsory monogamy?
-Two great Captain Awkward posts on online dating and queer romance.
5 tips for calling out transphobia.
How to be an ally to Muslim women: an incomplete starter kit.
Ann Giles’ husband transitioned during their marriage, and 17 years later they’re still in love.
10 thoughts on mental illness, abuse, and survivors.
Hugo Schwyzer and the consumption of redemption narratives.
-A really interesting essay on geek culture.
Visible bodies: transgender narratives retold.
-A beautiful example of doing parenting right: we think he might be a boy.

What have you been reading/writing this week?