The body positive movement may be making leaps and bounds in the world of fashion, but there’s still a long way to go until the industry catches up with the meaning of true inclusivity.
Case in point: Australian sleepwear giant, Peter Alexander, who has been called out for charging plus-size women more for the same items of clothing than standard-size customers.
The controversy emerged on social media after shoppers spotted a $10 (£5.60) price difference between plus-size and standard clothing for slips, pyjamas sets and pyjama bottoms in the sleepwear range.
The designer is currently charging $59.95 (£33.76) for the plus-size Tropical Vibes Mid Short, while the same style in standard sizes costs $49.95 (£28.13).
The disparity can also be seen in a plus size nightie costing $79.95 (£45.02), compared to the same garment in XS-XL sizing at $69.95 (£39.39), while a plus-size satin pyjama set costs $119 (£67.01) compared to $109 (61.38) in the standard size.
Facebook users have been sharing side-by-side comparisons of the sleepwear, branding the designer “fat-phobic” and “out-of-touch” for their differing costs.
“Hey PA, I love how size inclusive your stores are but why does your plus size sleepwear cost $10 an item more then non-plus sized sleepwear?” one disgruntled user commented.
“You can’t use the argument because you ‘use less fabric’ because if that’s the case for your smaller sizes you would be charging less per size! Absolute garbage!”
After reaching out to Peter Alexander for an explanation, one user posted the following response on the original Facebook thread:
“In order to ensure we make them as comfortable as possible, we utilise a different pattern that specifically meets the needs of the sizes, rather than simply just increasing the size. This allows us to ensure the fit and comfort is right in the correct places – for example, we may increase the coverage across the hips or thighs, but not increase the length of the pants; or we add additional support to our nighties to ensure coverage across the bust.”
“It is these different patterns, along with the size of the production run and the amount of fabric that is utilised that impacts the price of the styles. We try and limit this as much as possible, and as the business grows and we are able to increase our production, we are hoping to even the pricing out over the next 12-18 months.”
Glamour UK has reached out to Peter Alexander for comment.