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Tag Archives: Beefcake Swimwear

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New Store Alert: Curve Girl

Curve Girl Banner

There has been a lot of great response to the recent new store alerts I have posted, especially the one for Beefcake Swimwear. And I have yet another new store alert. I am always so happy when I can tell you about a new place to shop that offers plus size clothing, and I think I have one today that will pique the interest of quite a few of you. Today we will be taking a look at Curve Girl.

Curve Girl Logo

 

Curve Girl is one of those companies that recently reached out to me and asked me to join their affiliate program. And as I have said previously, I get invited to a lot of affiliate programs, I only join if I either already use the companies products or I feel they have something to offer that I think will help my readers in some way. You can probably deduce that I did end up joining their affiliate program by the fact that I am writing this, because why would be writing this if I didn’t think they had something helpful to offer.

So what does Curve Girl have to offer? Well they have nice designs, and some are even unique. They have affordable prices. They are designed in the USA and manufactured in either China or India depending upon the item. They have pretty fast shipping times according to their website. And I am guessing you’re thinking, “okay, but you can get all of those things at other places”, and you can. But there are two things that made those things go from meh to OMG in about 6 seconds flat. 1. They make sizes Medium to 9X, which shoots them up to being one of the most size inclusive companies I am aware of. and 2. like eShakti they offer customization, only they do it for free and their prices are about half or less of eShakti. And after the bad experience I had with eShakti earlier this year, I had been on the hunt for other companies that offered customization so I could share with you.

I have placed an order with Curve Girl and will share a review on the items and ordering process once they actually arrive. In the mean time I wanted to go ahead and give you a basic overview of what the company has to offer and their pricing. But first lets take a look at their size chart.

Curve Girl Size Chart

This of course is not their full size chart, I couldn’t get a screenshot of the whole thing because of how large it is. I typically wear a size 20W or 2X at traditional plus size stores like Lane Bryant and Torrid. At most stores like these a 2X is an 18/20W. However occasionally a store will have their 2X be a 20/22W. One of the stores that does this would be JC Penny for Example. I do still wear a 20W or 2X in most of the brands in JC Penny, but there are a couple of exceptions. My measurements are Bust: 49″ Waist: 42″ Hips: 54″. I take my measurements and look at their size chart and I think it looks pretty normal for a plus size 20 and 2X.

Pants if I were ordering the based on the number size might be tricky, but they usually are everywhere. But. as long as their size chart is accurate, I should be able to order most other things straight from their off the rack sizes and them fit comfortably. But as I said, pants are always an issue for me, and I know a lot of you have said the same as well as dress lengths. So the order I placed I went with the custom sizing in hopes that their service will be something I can recommend for everyone.

When it comes to what they offer they have everything from casual daytime look all the way up to evening wear. Their designs seem to range from average, every plus size store has something similar to things I have never seen before offered in plus and maybe never in small sizes either.  Not everything is my personal taste, but a lot of it is. Over all I think they have a nice variety. I will of course share what I ordered when my order comes in. But for now I want to share with you some of the pieces I think are more unique, whether they are my taste or not.

Their biggest selection seems to be in dresses.

 


The rest of the sections are pretty sparse, but they still have some interesting items here and there.

000

They seem to be adding new items on the regular, so if you don’t see what you want, you should keep checking back.

I have found a couple of small negatives. First, I don’t think their website is well-organized. Things are in wrong categories, some aren’t even in their categories, and some categories won’t let you view everything unless you click just the right button. The other issue I found is with the Ask A Question box. I could not get it to function correctly. Of course Curve Girl only opened this year and only time will tell if this is part of their growing pains that will be fixed quickly or if this will be a major flaw for them. In the meantime I highly recommend when using their website to take your time and fully look around. And if you have questions try using their email contact versus their question box.

Now the good news is that while I was in the middle of writing this, Curve Girl sent me an email telling me I could my readers know they are having a Summer SITEWIDE SALE 10% OFF. So if you want to give them a try yourself now is a great time. And I think they always have free shipping for orders over $50.

Let me know what you think in the comments. Have you spotted something you are excited to try?

 

 

Summer Sale Banner, Summer sale clothing

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New Store Alert: Beefcake Swimwear

Beefcake Swimwear logo

I am sort of excited to talk to you about this brand because of how different they are. They aren’t completely new, but they only came on my radar a few months ago and I haven’t really heard anything else about them since. Today we are talking about Beefcake Swimwear. They are a company with a unique concept who got their start through Kickstarter.

Beefcake Swimwear logo

What makes them different? Quite a lot actually, but lets start with the most obvious things. First of all their designs are based on vintage styles from the Victorian era. Because they are Victorian era inspired designs, in addition to offering a little more coverage than that of most modern swimwear, it also means the styles are unisex. And before you ask, no I did not make a mistake, they are a completely gender neutral swimwear company.

There are some other pretty great things about this company. They are made in the USA, based out of Portland, OR. And that is manufactured in the USA, not just designed here. And to top off the proverbial sundae they only use 100% recycled polyester and spandex.

They currently offer two suit designs, The Original and The Dreamboat.

The Original Beefcake Swimsuit

The Original

The Dreamboat Beefcake Swimsuit

The Dreamboat

Each style is available in three color options and a wide range of sizes. They are available in sizes XS to 5X. Make sure to check the size chart before ordering as this is unisex sizing, but I found the 2X measurements to be pretty standard for a woman’s plus size 2X.

Beefcake swimwear really seems focused on inclusiveness. It’s written all over their website and Instagram. I love that they are using real people, of all shapes, sizes, and genders, to model their swimsuits. And their plus sizes aren’t model perfect. Their real, with real bodies you see walking down the street every day.

 

I actually got a chance to ask the Beefkcake Swimwear’s owner and creator Mel Wells’ a few questions recently about the swimwear and where she sees the company going. Here is what we talked about:

Me: I see you started out in book publishing and nonprofit administration, what inspired you to start a swimwear line?

Mel Wells: The inspiration for Beefcake Swimwear came from a good friend who identified as female but dressed very masculine. She struggled to find swimwear and mentioned that she wanted a suit like the 1920s one-pieces. Naively, I offered to make her one. I’d sewn a few items of clothes in high school and college (I’ve always been super tall and struggled to find clothes) but sewing a swimsuit is hard. Other people who heard what I was doing thought it was an awesome idea, so I began toying with the idea of starting a small business making these suits. Mostly I needed to find a professional to do the sewing!

Me: The concept of your swimwear is not like the average swimwear line. What made you decide to create something both so vintage looking and unisex?

Mel Wells: Perhaps it’s because I’ve been in Portland, Oregon for over 10 years now, but a gender-neutral swimsuit didn’t strike me as radical. When I researched one-piece suits from the 1920s and 1930s, men and women are pretty much wearing the same thing. I wanted to stay true to that inspiration, well, except for the little skirt thing some of them had. 🙂

Me: I see you have two patterns available on your website at the moment. Do you have any plans on adding any other patterns?

Mel Wells: I definitely have more patterns and colors in mind! The most challenging part is that with the current choices (2 designs, 3 colors, 10 sizes, and a shelf bra option), we have to stock 120 swimsuits just to have one of each. Not only does this present a storage issue (we’re operating the storage/packaging/shipping part of the business out of a tiny one-bedroom apartment), but it’s pretty expensive to make 120 suits in the first place. So, additional colors and designs will have to be rolled out over time.

Me: What is your dream for the future of Beefcake Swimwear?

Mel Wells: Honestly, my vision is to make the best possible version of these suits and stay alive as a small business manufacturing in the USA. The very best part of running this company is hearing from folks who haven’t gone to the beach or got in the pool in a decade, and who now feel comfortable and confident in a swimsuit. The black Original suits are by far our bestsellers, so I can see us making those for a long time. It’s daunting to know that H&M or Forever 21 could do this style of swimsuit tomorrow, and probably do it super cheap, but my hope is that we would still appeal to folks who are concerned about the human beings who do the super labor-intensive and skilled work of sewing receiving fair wages. I’m also really excited about the new Italian-milled recycled polyester we’re launching this spring–environmental responsibility is another big concern of ours.

Me: I love that you have a pretty inclusive size offerings. If someone were to not fit your sizes, do you do custom pieces?

Mel Wells: Thank you! It’s important to me that our sizing be as inclusive as we can afford. (I already mentioned the challenges of producing and stocking inventory.) I wish we could offer custom suits, but it is prohibitively expensive and time-consuming. We’d need to pay the pattern maker to adjust the pattern, the designer to adjust the markers on the printer and dial in the colors and printing, and then custom-print that single suit, all of which would cost hundreds of dollars. This isn’t just me at my kitchen table with scissors and a sewing machine–there is a whole team and process involved in making these suits. Of course, I still package suits at my kitchen table and respond to emails personally, but even that happens on evenings and weekends since I have a day job. Honestly sometimes I wonder if this whole endeavor is bananas, but I’m going to keep doing it for as long as it’s sustainable.

 

I also hope she manages to keep Beefcake Swimwear going. This may not be the swimwear to everyone’s taste, but I definitely think it fills some gaps that needed filling. I can see Beefcake Swimwear appealing to several markets beyond just those looking for gender neutral swimwear. I know you vintage lovers as well those of you into Steampunk will want to get your hands on these. And I think that there is a rising market for modest clothing, and I would assume that would include swimwear. And the conscientious buyers take note of this company as well. Lets all help get the word out about this swimwear line.

Tell me in the comments what you think of Beefcake Swimwear. Would you wear a gender neutral swimsuit?

 

 

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