Meet Flying Pig Apparel
We’ve all heard by now the relentless stream of advice to eat less and exercise more. And as of 2008, about 35% of American women were classified as overweight or obese. Yet walk into any mainstream store, and their “plus size” department is relegated to a tiny corner, as if there are so few of us that they don’t need to carry much of a selection. Now try to find active wear for “plus sizes” in that same ordinary department store. If you can even locate it, it’s often items that are completely unsuitable for actual exercise. The attitude is clear: ‘Larger women will buy exercise clothes when pigs fly.’
We are four women who decided one day that the status quo is not going to fly with us. It’s about time that we stop giving our clothing dollars to companies who grudgingly scale up their “regular” clothing to fit larger sizes (poorly), pass off awkward designs and horrible prints on us, and make assumptions about what we can and can’t do. We have varying body types and varying levels of activities, but the one thing we have in common is that like many women, what’s on offer doesn’t work for us.
Rene Rice is a twenty-something with a background in retail management and is a long time home seamstress. She has sewn everything from slipcovers for her couches to wedding dresses. When she isn’t sewing, she’s reading. Her sincerest wish is that she owned her great aunt’s wardrobe from the 1940’s.
Bobby Gentry is old enough to know better and still too young to care, and has experience in so many fields that it’s a wonder she didn’t launch this thing on her own. She enjoys diving with her husband Keith and dispensing sage advice to her slightly younger friends.
Barb Kropf is another twenty-something who has somehow managed to convince her boss that he’s still in charge while she actually runs the business. An internet sales godess, Barb is also the proud mother of a wiggle worm (who can proudly point out “boobies!” at the funniest possible moment) and wife of Joe (who has passed the stage of obviously pointing out “boobies!”…barely).
One day while moving Bobby, Keith and Audry into a new apartment, Bobby joked that we should take over the world. Well, maybe not the whole world but the fashion world at least. Rene looked up and said, “You know, we might just be able to do that.” and proceeded to explain the hole in the market for exercise clothing for larger women and proposed that we start there. A few days later, a doubting “friend” made a comment to the effect of “a plus sized exercise clothing company will be successful when pigs fly.” And thus Flying Pig Apparel was born.