Fans expressed disappointment after Lena Dunham released her new plus-size capsule collection
Even though plenty of brands these days are touting themselves as being “inclusive” and “body positive,” stylish and affordable options for larger bodies are still markedly slim. Lena Dunham is entering the fashion market, launching a capsule collection with 11 Honoré, a company that calls itself a “size-inclusive shopping site,” and while the five items in the line are chic, tailored, and elegant, some social media users are unhappy with Dunham’s first foray into fashion.
The Girls alum teamed up with 11 Honoré for the 11 Honoré x Lena Dunham collection, which features plenty of work wear essentials, including a coordinating navy pinstripe blazer and miniskirt with delicate scalloped trim, a printed dress with a handkerchief hem, a buttery yellow button-up blouse, and a classic white mock-neck tank. Prices range from $98 to $298 and the collection ranges in sizes 12 to 26, two points that social media users noted were prohibitive for bodies beyond size 26 as well as shoppers who simply can’t afford to spend close to $100 on a basic white tank top.
With regards to the size options, the collection expands 11 Honoré’s offerings by one size — they typically cover up to size 24 and call themselves “a size-inclusive shopping site that for the first time ever, gives more women the option to experience the best designer clothing and celebrate and honor their bodies, beauty, and style.” Given that people who wear sizes 5X, 6X, and beyond are already severely limited when it comes to available shopping options, it’s understandable why some are frustrated with the new line.
Apparently Lena Dunham is making a plus size clothing line that only goes up to a size 26. That’s… not a plus sized line. That’s a mid size line with limited, extended sizing. pic.twitter.com/Xs3OFrVJwV
— Devon Cantwell (@devon_cantwell) April 5, 2021
it should surprise no one that lena dunham’s plus size line cuts of at a US 26, leaving out the same people that just about every single plus size line leaves out.
if you think you don’t know someone bigger than a 26, congratulations, you do. you know me.
— 💖📯 sgt. pepper’s juicy ass club band 📯💖 (@lovelylandfill) April 6, 2021
Plus size people vs Lena Dunham launching her collection pic.twitter.com/Q4ACBl7IX7
— Sharanya (@haridassharanya) April 6, 2021
Others have noted accessibility issues with the price points, arguing that the collection shuts out the population of people who can’t afford to spend at least $100 on one single item of clothing.
My only real thought about the Lena Dunham clothes thing is that its always a little tiresome when a marginalized person thinks they are making a huge statement by making an exclusive and expensive experience slightly more accommodating for themselves
— Lux “Diehard Urbanist” Alptraum (@LuxAlptraum) April 5, 2021
Fatness is strongly correlated with poverty, so excuse me if I’m not excited by a celebrity-designed plus size capsule wardrobe with price points of $100 for a top and $300 for a jacket.
Also, I just don’t like Lena Dunham, so there’s that.
— mj, MA (@scib0rg) April 5, 2021
Over the years, Dunham has been open about her experiences with body image, so it makes sense that her fashion debut would aim to cater to those who have been made to feel like fashion isn’t for them. In a New York Times article announcing the launch, the actor noted that the clothing line “is a direct response to [her] experience” being criticized or shut out of high-fashion options throughout her career. But per some of her quotes in the article — including not designing sweatpants because “for a chubby girl it’s, ‘You’ve made a lifestyle choice to give up’” if wearing sweatpants; joking about being on steroids but “not the cool kind that make you muscular, just the kind that make your face fat,” sharing that she has a “straight-up gut, like an old man — and that’s not where anybody wants to see flesh,” and joking about eating a “large baguette” during her Zoom interview (you know, because fat people eat large baguettes, right?) — it seems she has a bit more unpacking to do when it comes to celebrating and supporting all bodies and her own internalized fatphobia.
Still, any options that allow larger bodies to feel cute and comfortable are much-needed and much-deserved, so here’s hoping brands will hear the criticisms and offer more accessible and inclusive options for all bodies.