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The ugliest effing sweater and the Brisbane Fatty Clothing Swap

I helped set up and attended the first ever Brisbane Fatty Clothing swap the other week. After some hassle of figuring out how to transport three very large garbage bags full of clothing (and the bags had rips all over them, from my kitten – a fact I didn’t realise until I’d gotten out of the car I was getting a lift in), I managed to make it to the venue in one piece.

It was a lovely, large, air conditioned room, and we’d set up tables for each size range of clothing to sit on. Makeshift dressing rooms were set up with large sheets and bulldog clips and a free-standing mirror was placed against the middle of the back wall. All around the room there were body positive signs blue-tacked to the walls and each of the organisers and helpers wore badges with the Chub Republic.

It was a very positive event and I’m glad I attended. I hope there will be more in the future and I hope more people will attend. We didn’t get as many people as I hoped we would get. It was definitely advertised all over the place, and with enough time for people to know about it, so I don’t think that was the issue. Perhaps it was the day it was held (on a Saturday, and I guess some people had to work) or even the time (at 12pm) or possibly even the venue (South Bank). I hope to get some feedback on this, so if anything needs tweaking or fixing, we know about it.

Those who attended seemed to have a good time, however. I was very pleased to see a much loved dress of mine go to a woman with lovely, curly short hair. It looked especially Grecian on her and I was happy the dress seemed to be loved.

I managed to score some items myself, despite not being on the look-out for anything in particular. One such item, I have deemed the ugliest effing sweater in existence. The brand is Pingpong and I swear to god, it has patches, sequins, pom poms and bright, garish colours. I look forward to wearing it. I brought it home and my mother, very diplomatically said it was “interesting”. I laughed.

I talked before about Natalie Perkins and the Ugly Manifesto. I want to actively cultivate “ugly” this winter, at least in the realm of clothing. I want to wear things that fat girls aren’t “supposed” to wear, at least as they get older. I aim to wearing leggings as pants, oversized jumpers, and the ugliest effing sweater and keep my hair short. I did most of this as a young girl because I wanted to hide my body. Then I discovered body acceptance and started showing off my body more – I lived in pencil skirts and camisoles, the tighter the better.

Now, it seems I’m coming back around to my pre-teen self. I’m more into shapeless, oversized clothing these days, but this is a conscious decision on my part and one I’m making for myself, instead of one being made and dictated for me. I am not trying to hide, I am not trying to conceal. I want to explore my identity as a fat woman, who is into fashion and what that means. And I’m starting with the ugliest effing sweater.

(Image Credit)

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