My Memorial Day week was spent wandering the halls of Hillman College as "A Different World" has been added to Netflix. I even couldn't help but to be inspired fashion wise by Denise Huxtable, who wasn't on the show long, but who I probably identified with the most on the show. As I watched, I couldn't help but to think of how important it is to see images that you can see yourself in represented in the media. As a black, biracial, and plus size woman these are still images that are underserved in the media. "A Different World" sent me to college and indirectly is a large part of why I am who I am today. I loved all the characters on the show but loved Whitley, Denise, and Freddie the most. They shared my interracial background (even though they gave Whitley and Denise two African American parents, even at the age of 8, I was not easily fooled). This meant a lot to me just to see their images. In my small southern town, my siblings and I were most often the only "mixed kids" to go through our school system. It is a trip to be the only one of something, especially as a child.
Whitley, Denise, and Freddie had my beige color, curly hair, and I saw pieces of myself in each of those women and still do today. Like Whitley, I love a nice wardrobe, married an engineer, and have a strong southern accent (I do hope that mine is less annoying LOL). Like Denise, I was horrible in my first year of school (the ease of high school didn't prepare me for college), down to earth, and can be all over the place when it comes to my pursuits. Finally, like Freddy, I have my agenda of how I want to help the world and in my earlier years was very naive because of my small town background.
I think about this show as it relates to the plus size fashion industry and how sometimes that I even I can forget the importance of seeing someone who looks like you and why it's a topic that comes up often. As I see the fabulous plus images coming out more frequently, I am still plagued by the fact that it's still not enough. It lit a fire under me to keep pushing to do more for our imagery.
Style Notes: One quick and easy thing I do to "summer-ize" my wardrobe is to add in a slew of tanks of various colors to add in with my skirts. I picked up these tanks from AVA and VIV at $7 (on sale from $10) at Target. This has been a go-to solution for me for years as an easy way to inexpensively make my wardrobe warm weather friendly. The thicker straps on these make them bra strap friendly. Pick up just about any skirt in your closet and a tank can be worn with it, add some cute jewelry and your set.
This post was sponsored by Target, all opinions my own.