A love affair cut too short… or is it?
It’s not often a brand comes along that has truly got their aesthetic down to a T from the get-go. To appeal to me, a brand needs to have a strong image of what influences them. Even better if that influence is vintage style and feminine silhouettes. I love a cute story, and regularly visit the ‘About us’ sections on brand websites to see what they are about. From the moment I was introduced to them, Joanie have shot a heart-shaped arrow into my fashionista heart. I first saw their collection on none other than the delicious Em Smyth from Terrible Tumbles when she sneaked some previews of her modelling the A/W16 range on instagram last summer. Can I just point out, my girl-crush knows NO LIMITS for that woman. Not only is she incredibly stylish and beautiful, but she’s super intelligent, hilarious, and a bloody fantastic blogger.
See? Let the girl-crush wash over you!
Now, there is one main reason why this post won’t feature me wearing anything from Joanie’s latest collection, and this is currently the only downside to an otherwise wonderful brand.
Joanie’s original range was available from a UK 8 – 26, which was incredibly courteous for an up-and-coming brand to be so inclusive. Now; it’s not unknown for me to have to size up from my usual 22 and buy a 24, especially if the item has no stretch to it. I need to fit my norks in somehow. After seeking advice from other Joanie gals, it was clear that a 22 would be a bit too tight on me, so I was happy to order a few 24s in items that are no longer available on the website. I was smitten when they arrived, a perfect fit on the bust and not too loose anywhere else, which lead me to accept that Joanie’s larger sizes may run a little bit small. Still, I had plenty of choice in a size 24, and was looking forward to them releasing a new collection.
Throughout this post, I’ll be plonking pictures of me in one of my favourite Joanie pieces – the Lippy Lips Print Dress. Unfortunately, this is now sold out after going into the sale for a bargain £17.50! Still, there’s plenty more adorable prints and sassy styles available in the current sale.
Imagine my sadness when Joanie’s new collection dropped, full of colour and texture, but they now only offered sizing up to a UK 22?! That’s right: for some unexplained reason, Joanie would no longer make size 24s and 26s. This means that their range now only caters up to a UK 20 due to their small sizing. Heartbroken doesn’t cover it, my friends. Where am I going to get my tasteful fix of vintage vs. practical now?
I do hope Joanie listen to this cry for help from a plus-size Joanie gal. I’m desperate to get another Joanie fix, to represent their brand and style, especially now I’ve fallen in love with their latest collection. I wouldn’t feel half as strongly about this if Joanie clothing had never been attainable to me in the first place. I feel like the carrot of unique, quirky, dream fashion is now being dangled in front of me, when it used to be within my grasp! I just can’t get over it. If anyone else feels this way, please leave a comment below so that Joanie can see how many potential Joanie gals they could be recruiting!
So why am I still dreaming of Joanie?
Firstly, their prices are incredibly reasonable, with dresses on average between £30 – 40. They also have regular promotions, discount codes, and sales. Even at full price when I bought it, this dress was an affordable £35. Secondly, they are an incredible quality. The garments are lined, the stitching is pristine, the lengths are reasonable and the fabrics are luxe.
Third: The designs are genuinely unique. In an industry of reproduction vintage brands, Joanie manage to genuinely stand out with their attention to detail, uniquely sourced fabrics, and modern additions to vintage styles. So many patterns are replicated nowadays, and there are only so many ways to make a swing dress, but Joanie continually refresh the old styles with their own flair.
Finally, on a selfish level, Joanie really suits my style! I’ve been buying from well known vintage repro brands for years, but I’ve never felt such a dedicated affinity to a brand until Joanie came along. They truly understand the modern vintage lover, as they are cut from the same cloth (pun intended) as a company.
When I wear Joanie, I feel beautiful. I feel feminine, stylish, fashionable and I feel like my personality is on show for the world to admire. Joanie, why take that away from me?!
I hope you can see that this post is written with love. I’m merely drawing this attention to Joanie and other brands that originally aimed for inclusivity, but have recently fallen short due to reasons unknown. For the love of god, please start making my size again so you can take my money!
For those of you lucky enough to fit into Joanie’s range, I hope you feel as great as I do when you’re a Joanie gal!
As a special treat, Joanie have been sweet enough to provide me with a special discount for readers of BigBawdyBurlyBeauty:
Use the code PATTI10 up until 31/10/17 for 10% off any full priced items in your order!
Dress – Joanie (sold out)
Shoes – Sole Diva now £17.75!
Earrings – Forever 21 (sold out)
After reading my post, the lovely team at Joanie contacted me to provide a bit of background knowledge. They were super sweet and clearly took my feedback on board, and provided the following information: “The reason we no longer stock sizes 24 – 26 is because unfortunately they did not sell. Our intention was to be an inclusive brand and we still want to be. However, as a new business we have to ensure there is a demand for the product we are creating and unfortunately with the larger sizes these would often be left over and carried into sale. Really sorry to disappoint you and I just wanted to email to let you know we are listening and if the demand is there we would love to be able to offer more sizes in future”
At least we now have something to focus on now, plus-size Joanie Gals! I’m going to respond to Joanie about that email very soon, but if anyone wants to contribute to my reply showing an interest and/or recommendations as to how Joanie can reach their plus-size audience a little better, please contact me! You can comment on this post, or you can email me using the contact form at the top of the page. I want to give Joanie a big, positive response from us size 22+ girls about how we may have just caught news of their brand a little too late, and given a second chance, I know I would be snapping up my favourite pieces long before they went into the sale!