In the first of a series of virtual talks/panels curated with a purpose of continuing our commitment to connecting communities, we presented a live digital panel titled, “Go Big or Go Home: Plus Size Inclusivity in Queer Fashion,” moderated by Anita Dolce Vita (@AnitaDolceVita) Owner of dapperQ and featuring speakers Dr. Van Bailey (@dr__handsome), Kay Ulanday Barette (@brownroundboi), Jahn Hall (@jahnhall). and Amy Stretten (@chiefofstyle).
The panel covered topics such as the state of plus size inclusivity in queer fashion; style and trouble-shooting tips for plus size consumers who struggle finding clothing that affirms them at the intersection of queer identity and size; body diversity within plus size queer fashion; and actionable steps independent queer brands can take to expand size offerings and remain financially successful when their inventories are smaller than big box retail stores.
About the speakers:
Van Bailey is a student affairs educator, international speaker. diversity consultant and collective member of bklyn boihood. With over thirteen years of experience in higher education and nonprofits, Van’s speeches and workshops relate to LGBTQ+ student leadership, pedagogical practice, and intersectionality. Van’s styling and fashion uplifts ancestral adornment and centers black bois of size.
Kay Ulanday Barette: Named one of 9 Transgender and Gender Nonconforming Writers You Should Know by VOGUE, KAY ULANDAY BARRETT is a poet, performer, and cultural strategist. K. has featured at The Lincoln Center, The U.N., Symphony Space, Princeton University, Tucson Poetry Festival, The Dodge Poetry Foundation, The Hemispheric Institute, & Brooklyn Museum. They are a 2x Pushcart Prize nominee, Best of the Net Split This Rock 2019 nominee, and 2019 Queeroes Literary Honoree by Them.+ Condé Nast. They have served on boards, panels, and committees for The Transgender Law Center, The Leeway Foundation, Res Artis, The Disability Justice Collective, and The Trans Justice Funding Project. They were Guest Editor for Nat.Brut & Guest Faculty for The Poetry Foundation. Their contributions are found in The New York Times, Academy of American Poets, Buzzfeed, Asian American Literary Review, PBS News Hour, F(r)iction, Race Forward, NYLON, The Huffington Post, Bitch Magazine, The Advocate, & more. More Than Organs, published in 2020 by Sibling Rivalry Press is their second collection. Currently, Kay lives outside of NYC area with his jowly dog and remixes his mama’s recipes whenever possible. Kaybarrett.net
Jahn Hall is an industry veteran and the owner of Consortium NYC, a creative services agency supporting both new & established apparel and lifestyle brands. With 30 years in the industry, Jahn has worked with brands like David Hart, Krammer & Stoudt, the Project trade show, and dapperQ, among many other and works as a personal stylist / shopper for clients around the country. When he’s not working, he enjoys staying home during an incredibly surreal time with his husband and dog. Jahn will be donating any contributions to his Zoom account to New Alternatives and organization dedicated to increasing the self-sufficiency of LGBTQ+ homeless youth and young adults by enabling them to transition out of the shelter system to stable adult lives.
Amy Stretten is a bilingual Native American, Black and white femme journalist and plus-size fashion blogger from Los Angeles. She created The Chief of Style to celebrate her love of fashion and chronicle her journey toward radical self-acceptance. As a social media influencer, she has worked with several size-inclusive and queer-centered brands, like TomboyX, Stuzo, and Universal Standard. As a journalist, Amy has told the stories of marginalized and otherwise overlooked communities for outlets like NYPost, ABC/Univision, and CNN. In 2018, Amy partnered with Dove and news outlet, Mic, to produce a short documentary on femme invisibility. In 2019, she was the face of Lane Bryant’s Pride collection. Amy is also a sustainable fashion reporting fellow with ModeDurable, a program at the Parsons School of Design in New York. Amy has worked for several mainstream and Indigenous news organizations around the U.S. and Canada. She holds a Master of Arts degree in Journalism from the Craig Newmark School of Journalism at CUNY in New York City and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy and Spanish from Mount Holyoke College in Western Massachusetts.
This is an incredible talk. It is the most honest discussion I have heard about this. I have been involved in trying to bring plus size to the mass market AND trying to do it in our community and both are SO incredibly challenging. I am actively looking for other people who are looking to change this story line by bringing the product to the people so hit me up!