Ann Taylor will no longer carry size 16 items in their retail stores. “But they’re keeping it online,” our tipster Dena observed. “In other words, ‘Hey, wide load! Stay out of our stores! Oh, but keep giving us your cash.’”
Crain’s New York reported:
An Ann Taylor spokeswoman blamed low demand for the size in both brands, but some industry experts speculate that the elimination is really a cost-cutting measure.
“It’s more expensive to produce,” said one retail expert, explaining that larger sizes need separate patterns cut and fitted, which can be quite costly.
I call BS on this. Guess what, geniuses? Offering the same items online that used to be available in stores means that you still have to design them, still have to cut the patterns for them, and you still have to make them. Just not as many.
Good luck to Ann Taylor, though. I’m sure that this move will work out well for them at a time when, according to the same Crain’s article, 70% of American women wear a size 12 or larger. Other retailers in the same price range, such as Banana Republic, Gap, and J. Crew, ditched their larger sizes for women years ago.
Ann Taylor cuts size 16 [Crain's New York]