Sometimes our hearts bleed for some rather large girls.
Our company, Pegeen.com, recently had an all too familiar experience when, for the umpteenth time this week, we received a frantic call from a mother in search of a plus-size flower girl dress for her daughter's First Communion. Fortunately, it's not late in the season, but the quest for the perfect dress has always been more challenging for these body types.
However, the shocking part of the story lies in an incident that occurred when this mother visited a well-known bridal store. The store's clerk, in front of the innocent little girl, bluntly said, "Oh, we can't serve her kind here."
Let's pause for a moment to digest the gravity of this situation. This little girl did absolutely nothing wrong other than being in the wrong store, and she was met with a response that was not only insensitive but also deeply hurtful. It begs the question: Do businesses provide sensitivity training to their employees?
The issue of body image is something that affects many of us throughout our lives. In my own experience, I battled with anorexia and bulimia because I felt inadequate next to my naturally slender sister. All it took was one relative asking, "Do you really think you should have that bowl of ice cream?" on my birthday to trigger an emotional spiral.
Pegeen has been on a mission for 40+ years, emphasizing the importance of how we treat plus-size girls, and it all begins with dignity. A child's size is not her fault; it could be her genetics, family stressors, or even medications used after transplant therapy that might cause her to have a different body shape. So, when a parent takes their child into a store, even if they think they're being discreet, the child can hear every word. Some children may not be affected, but others genuinely internalize these hurtful comments.
Did you really have to say to your potential customer, "We don't serve her kind here"? Or perhaps one of our all-time "favorites," "Let's alter this girl's dress so she can have room for breasts in the future?" Such statements are not only offensive but also disrespectful to the child and her family.
At Pegeen, we've developed a unique approach to sizing. When parents provide us with their child's measurements (usually over the phone), we make it a point to ask the parent to get off the speaker phone as soon as possible. This is to ensure that the child doesn't hear our discussion after measurements have been taken. We have simplified our sizing by using the child's height as their size. For instance, if a child is 55 inches tall, they are considered a size 10. The chest and waist measurements are part of our "magic" because we handcraft every dress. Internally, we refer to it as a "10 plus 1," indicating that we cater to children with unique measurements, such as a 35-inch chest. More information can be read about our process by visiting this link: DETAILS
In conclusion, it is crucial that we remember that children, irrespective of their size, deserve respect, empathy, and kindness. Pegeen.com is dedicated to ensuring that all little girls feel cherished, celebrated, and beautiful, regardless of their size or shape.