Plus size shopping is hard; to put it bluntly, the retail industry doesn’t dedicate nearly enough attention to curves. While stores love to advertise that they cater to all sizes, they just aren’t inclusive enough. Plus size “sections” end up being a few racks, shunned to the back of the store… But one company, CoEdition is trying to change that!
Over the last few years, the plus size market has seen explosive growth with brands like Eloquii, Universal Standard, Gwynnie Bee and Dia&Co, getting a ton of attention. CoEdition, the online retailer being named the “Shopbop” of plus-size, wants to house brands like these, all under one roof.
And with the plus-size market being a $21 billion industry, according to research from firm NPD group, you have to wonder why a comprehensive online store curating and catering only to plus-size hasn’t existed yet? That’s just the question former Gilt employees and creators of CoEdition, Keith George, Brooke Cundiff, Kent Helbig and Kevin Ryan, all wondered.
Keith George, CoEdition’s CEO, stated in an article with Racked, “There are actually a lot of brands doing really exciting things in the space, but no one that is bringing them together. There’s a huge opportunity for something like CoEdition, which won’t just be selling clothes, but will be talking about size and fit, and will provide guidance and discovery.”
Sounds like curvy girl heaven, right?! CoEdition sells everything under the sun; clothes, swimwear, shoes and intimates, and boasts 20 different brands including popular designers like Tahari, Rachel Roy, Stuart Weitzman, Cosabella, and Cynthia Rowley.
Interestingly enough, while CoEdition doesn’t stock popular e-brands like Eloquii and Universal Standard, chief merchant Brooke Cundiff claims that it will sell about 150 different brands by the end of the year and will also partner with companies that haven’t delved into the plus size market yet like Splendid.
Along with the polished look, glossy photography and curated pages of editor’s picks, it plans to also put a huge emphasis on fit. So far, CoEdition has raised $4 million in funding going towards fit technology and gathering more research on fit. Charlotte Ross, an associate on the technology investing team at NEA who led the funding states,
“The plus-size market has a huge problem with fit, and returns are also a big issue. There’s an opportunity to gather feedback and data in one place and understand why one brand fits a certain way, and others don’t fit at all. It’s been one of those markets where brands have been lazy to tackle the problem of fit and manufacturing.”
So while plus-size has traditionally been a market that hasn’t received much funding, it seems like the tables are finally turning. If anyone had any doubt in their minds, other big brands like Madewell, Mara Hoffman, Loft, and Stitch Fix have been jumping on board too. This will no doubt only increase the number of investors and growth of the plus size industry.
A lot of excitement has begun to build and we can only expect more growth and development in the plus-size market. Head on over to CoEdition and finally, love your curves and love your clothes!
Do you know of any other great plus-size stores? Share with us in the comment section.
Featured image: Instagram/ @shopcoedition
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