Achieving Confidence While Avoiding Heartbreak: An Exploration of Plus-Size Apparel Consumption Experiences Among Mothers of Young Girls

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2018-01-01
Authors
Lee, Youngji
Hodges, Nancy
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Abstract

The purpose of this study was to explore experiences with shopping for apparel among mothers of young girls who wear plus-sizes. According to the American Heart Association (2016), nearly one in three children in the US is identified as overweight or obese. Childhood obesity creates an obvious need for plus-sized children’s apparel, and some retailers have sought to meet this need. To address the purpose of the study, a qualitative approach was employed to collect data, including in-depth interviews and online observation. Interviews were conducted with mothers because the literature indicates that they typically function as intermediaries between social forces and their children’s developing perceptions of self. Findings of this study reveal the extent to which the mothers face challenges in finding stylish, age appropriate, well-fitting plus-sized clothing for their young daughters, despite the number of retailers that offer expanded children’s sizes. Suggestions for retailers are provided, as are recommendations for further study.

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