Brisbane Fatty Clothing Swap 2012
Next week, Brisbane is hosting its first ever Fatty Clothing Swap. It is on Saturday, the 10th of March at 12 pm – 3 pm at the Graduate Centre Function Room, Griffith University, 226 Grey Street, South Bank, QLD. Here is the Facebook event page.
Clothing must be either gently worn or new with tags, clean and either ironed or folded neatly. It will be divided up into sizes (fourteen and up) within the function room. Entrants will be given tokens for each of their clothing items, which they can ‘spend’ on items for swap. A gold coin donation is required, and the money will go to a Brisbane charity to be determined.
I’m excited about this swap! I’ve only ever participated in smaller scale swaps amongst friends, never a larger scale swap with official details and open to the public. I hope it goes well! I have a great deal of clothing to swap, in a variety of sizes. I’m not actually looking to get any clothes out of the swap (unless I come across the perfect pair of denim shorts – I am having SO much trouble finding these), but if I see something that catches my eye, for myself, my mother or my sister, I will definitely try and pick it up.
There have already been some complaints about the size ‘restrictions’. Some people have said they were not happy with the sizes starting at a size fourteen. Considering this is specifically a plus-sized clothing swap, I don’t get the complaints. There are loads of clothing available to those who are average to smaller sized, from chain stores, from designers, from op shops, from vintage shops. There are not to those who are larger than the average sized woman. I believe that fat women in particular tend to hold on to their clothing (especially if it’s vintage!) until it almost falls apart – because clothing can be so incredibly difficult to find if you’re not a ‘normal’ size, any clothing that is found is held on to for dear life. I recall searching through Etsy for plus sized vintage and finding, out of nearly one hundred pages, about seven dresses that would qualify as larger plus sized.
This swap is hoping to be a body positive event. The flyer asks that people do not refer to themselves in negative ways when trying on garments or looking at garments. This isn’t something that can be enforced as such, but I get where the event is coming from – we already hear so much negative commentary directed at our bodies, we already direct that commentary to ourselves that to avoid it, to definitively say ‘I will not be negative towards my body, I will make this a positive event’, feels like a radical step. I hope people will follow it.
I also like the idea of not purchasing more clothing and shopping other people’s wardrobes – one person’s trash is another’s treasure and the avoidance of conspicuous consumption is something that appeals to me lately. For me, I’m saving up for an overseas trip, so not spending any cash on clothing purchases appeals. For others, not having the money for new clothing all the time and needing to pay bills, day care, rent, food etc etc, it means they can get a new wardrobe for free, in clothing that may actually fit them.
So, if you’re in Brisbane and free on the 10th of March from 12 pm – 3 pm, join us at the Fatty clothing swap. Bring along your unwanted garments and hopefully walk out with something new and fabulous to you!