Donna Mellis opened Bodacious Lady Boutique because she had a difficult time finding a flattering full figured outfit to wear to her son’s wedding 3 years ago.
As many of us know, carrying larger sizes doesn’t always mean it’s made for our size and finding clothing specifically to flatter plus size women can be a bit of a task.
“Nothing was flattering to a larger woman,” Mellis says “… I don’t want anyone to feel the way I felt that day.”
“[Full-figured women] just don’t like shopping anymore because nothing fits,” says Mellis’ daughter Jennifer.
Bodacious Lady which is in the Five Forks Shopping Center in James City County, Virginia opened in September and stocks clothing made specifically to flatter larger-sized women’s bodies. Mellis wants it to be a place for full-figured women to shop that’s all their own and that strives to flatter their body types.
The store wouldn’t exist without the help of Mellis’ friends and family. A friend helps Mellis run the register, Mellis’ husband Jerry is in charge of bookkeeping, her daughter Jennifer is the store’s manager, and her son Adam helped with the store build-out. “It was definitely a village [that] helped build this,” Mellis said.
Designers won’t be able to fool this boutique into carrying their clothes just because they offer larger sizes. Mellis told her local paper of how she put in an order for dresses she said were supposed to have long sleeves and be cut above the knee. Rather than making a pattern for a plus-sized dress, she said it looked like the designer simply enlarged a smaller pattern, so the dress sleeves were several inches too long and the dress fell to mid-calf. She sent those dresses back.“People need to be more considerate of full-size women,” Mellis said.
Bodacious Lady Boutique stocks sizes from 14 up to 24 and from large to 5X. They are considering lowering the size range to include size 12; and has plans to add petite.
This is an exciting addition to the plus community. Many of us can relate to loving something on the rack until you try it on and the fit just isn’t right.