Disclaimer: This post is in no way sponsored by Gwynnie Bee. I took advantage of their 1 free month promotion for new members. The opinions expressed in this post are 100% my own. The link to Gwynnie Bee posted is my personal referral link.
Tim Gunn’s op-ed regarding the state of fashion choices available for plus size women is spot on. So much of what is currently on the market is unappealing to a national audience. There was a demand for more trendy and designer stores which has led to over saturation. It’s not that I don’t want to wear spaghetti strap dresses (even though I don’t) because of the way I look, it’s that they’re not work appropriate and I have yet to reconcile my relationship with cardigans. I struggled this summer trying to find appropriate wear to work dresses. It was frustrating AF.
Enter Gwynnie Bee a subscription based clothing rental website for sizes 10-30 . I’ll admit that I put all my biz cash eggs in this basket. If you’ve ever tried Le Tote (sizes 0-16), Gwynnie Bee operates the same way. You create an account, browse their offerings, add pieces you’d like to receive to your wardrobe and once you have save 25 items, they’ll start shipping them out to you.
GB costs $90/mo for their three at a time option which I feel is far too much for what little options they have. I prioritized 10 of my items out of the 25 in my wardrobe, but none of the items I received were my priorities. The two sweater dresses currently headed my way are unwearable in this unseasonably warm fall. I sweat enough already.
A far as options are concerned they offer a wide variety of designers including Jessica Howard, IGIGI, Seven by Melissa McCarthy, Poppy and Bloom and Eloquii. This summer showcased a specially designed for Gwynnie Bee line from Rachel Antonoff featuring cute animal and fruit patterns. These brands can be challenging to find in stores and having the option to have them sent to you is a game changer.
There are a few issues though. Many of the items they offer are rated low by members due to fit cutting down on the number of options available. The things you really want to receive are often unavailable when you want them. This has made finding 25 items that I would actually want to wear a daunting task. I was really hoping they would offer some basic outfit staples, but it’s mostly prints, dresses and awkwardly cut tops.
Returning items is a cinch. Once you’ve decided that you’re done wearing something (which you can return dirty, by the way), you notify GB through their website and they’ll begin prepping your next item. You mail back the dirty dress in one of the prepaid envelopes they’ve sent you and wait for the next package.
Overall, I really like the concept. I fluctuate between sizes and it’s nice to have temporary options available. However, I don’t think spending $90/mo on clothing is reasonable. Especially when compared to Le Tote’s $60/mo for a greater variety. I much prefer the Stitch Fix model of surprise clothes for $20 and buying what I want.
Right now I am giving GB another shot thanks to their half price WE MISS YOU promotion. I’m hoping to find one or two things to add to my fall wardrobe and try some styles I haven’t before. I’m not expecting to continue my membership when this promotion ends, but I could be pleasantly surprised!
If you’d like to give Gwynnie Bee a try and form your own opinion, you can test it out free for 30 days here.
The other night I decided to do some Christmas shopping on my way to a birthday party. Since the party started so late (8pm), I stopped by Dunkin Donuts to grab a coffee. The voice that came over the speaker asked me to drive up to the window where he would take my order. I sat behind a Honda CRV and watched the employee hand her over a coffee.
“No, no,” he said to the customer when she handed him the money. “It’s free tonight, we’re swamped in here.”
“Oh, well, in that case I’ll take three more coffees.”
The entire transaction lasted about seven minutes, which isn’t really a long time, but in I want my coffee years, it’s an eternity. Having worked quite a few thankless retail and food service jobs where people just treat you like garbage because they can, I was going to try my best to relate to him, but I quickly changed my mind.
That woman and I were different in that we chose different words to focus on. She put all her energy into “free” while I was more concerned with “swamped.” I wasn’t going to waste his time to empathize, he didn’t want it. So when he handed me my coffee and I handed over my debit card and he refused to take it I just said “You’re working really hard. I hope your night gets better. Thank you.” It was also out of respect for the people that had piled up behind me in line while that woman asked for more free coffee. Additionally, she kept him gabbing long after she received her free coffees which infuriated me more. I hate having my time wasted.
We tend to direct our behavior sometimes towards the employees for not speaking up to the customer to move things along, but they’re not allowed to. I was scolded once for yelling at a customer for telling me I was “too fat to pass by him” when I nicely said “Excuse me” to him when he was blocking the entrance of where I needed to go. Had we been two people on the street, I would’ve put totally justified in punching him in his stupid mouth. I mopped up the same toddlers urine twice when I was waitressing. The family then left me $4 on a $60 bill after I ran all over the place to get their food and separate their checks (which they paid as one anyway.) They said something snarky to me on their way out, per usual, I responded with “Please don’t sit in my section next time you come here. Every time I wait on you and your family it is the worst part of my day.” What did my boss do? She cut me first and I lost out on potential tips. (She was probably right in doing that, but those people were Alamo Heights buttholes who sat their daughter in front of a portable DVD player and asked me for loose slices of lunch meat every time I walked by.) Every other table I had was trying to empathize and I just wanted to cry. They never would’ve spoken to me like that if the circumstances were different. I never did see them again.
Which brings me to my next adventure: Kohl’s. Guys, I freaking love Kohl’s. I fought it for so long. I’m telling you right now: Don’t fight Kohl’s. Embrace it.
As I was finishing up my transaction with the nicest cashier ever, these two men literally pushed me out of the way. Unfortunately, this happens to me pretty frequently.
“I need to know if I can use this coupon today!”
The cashier, either shocked or powerless, said nothing, but looked at me with sympathetic eyes.
“I’m finishing up my sale here. Give me some space. She has some coupons to give me.”
“I need to know if I can USE MY COUPON TODAY!” And then he turned green and pounded his fist through the register. It was wild.
There are a few lessons to be learned here.
1. Be nice to people. Sometimes people are forced to be nice to you no matter how big of a dickhead you are being.
2. Don’t take advantage of other people’s kindness or misfortune. You may find yourself in that position some day.
3. Don’t apologize to someone when they push you over at Kohl’s. The words “I’m sorry, but…” almost preceded my opening statement.
4. You know what? Never apologize ever unless you really truly hurt someones feelings or inconvenience them. Those words have almost lost all meaning. They’re not said to appease people or introduce a request. They’re said when you mess up and want to express how badly you feel about it.
5. Choose what words you want to focus on! Focus on the positive, the words that ask for help or tell you how people feel about something. Focus on the words that you want to use to express yourself in a meaningful way.
6. You can stand up for yourself when someone is outright rude or disrespectful, but be careful about what you say because…
7. You never know who you’re talking to. Potential employer? Friend of a friend or family member? Banksy?
8. Seriously, sign up for Kohl’s charge. They send you all kinds of coupons.