Fatshion Blog

Long ago I had an idea. This idea was to create a safe-haven where fat people could learn the folly of their poor dressing ways. The idea was predicated on the belief that behaving and presenting yourself in certain ways dictates success, happiness and public perceptions both good and bad. This idea, and this idea alone, has lead to the creation of the Fatshion Blog. Learn to maximize your potential in life by maximizing others' perceptions of you.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Exciting News for Fatshion

After submitting a few pieces to various companies, I have been contacted by two small publishers regarding the potential for Fatshion to appear as a syndicated column in various style magazines. The articles may appear under the title "Fatshion and Fatceptance." Not to get ahead of myself, but one publishing company purchases columns for FHM, Maxim and a variety of other man-magazines. The other company produces direct-to-consumer catalogues for various clothing manufacturers. I think the first company understands the intentionality of Fatshion a little better, but I think I have the best shot with the second company.

"Hooray Fatshion," says the beautiful man.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Summer Fatshion Series: Shirts

Keeping cool without exposing too much of yourself is an incredibly delicate balance during the summer months. Fat people love the cold. Most fat men in heat just look confused or frustrated, and rightfully so. No need to fret as we continue with our summer Fatshion series. The three main concerns with warm weather shirts are color, fabric and style of shirt.

Near the top of the list for warm weather Fatshion is sweat control and concealing. For starters, no matter how hot it gets, always wear an undershirt. Your undershirt will act as a barrier of protection in heavy sweating areas. There are other things that can help, and one of the main things is color selection. Whether it's a simple t-shirt, golf shirt or even dress shirt, the color of shirt you choose to wear can make a huge difference. Colors like light gray, light blue and a variety of other colors drastically change colors when they become wet. If you have problems sweating through shirts, think about the colors of shirts you're purchasing--especially with t-shirts. Black, brown, cream, some darker grays and quite a few others change very little when wet. The best way to determine is to test shirts before buying them. When you're in a store, just put a small dab of saliva on your finger and rub it on one of the t-shirts. Look to see how much the color the shirt changes, and make your color decisions based upon which colors change the least. I know this suggestion may sound gross, but it could save you a lot of embarrassment down the line.

Fabric selection is really only important with golf shirts, button downs and dress shirts. Golf shirts essentially can be knit (pique or micro-pique), or they can be made of a smooth jersey-knit fabric. Knit shirts are preferred because they are slightly thicker, so they show less definition across the chest, and they are also quite a bit more absorbent than their jersey-knit counterparts. Button downs and other dress shirts should always be made of natural fibers like cotton. Polyester, Nylon and other synthetic fabrics don't breathe as well and can cause more sweating. One thing to consider with button downs is that many of the wrinkle free styles now offered at stores like Eddie Bauer, are also stain-free so they are quick drying and show considerably less moisture.

Short sleeve button downs should be worn only with utmost discretion. Most of them tread awfully close to having the look of a Hawaiian shirt, and this is antithetical to our cause. A much better option for a warm weather button down is to wear a long sleeve shirt with the sleeves rolled up two rolls. This creates a much more sleek, slimming look because of the added vertical interest. Also, this type of shirt can go with shorts and pants, and it can be either casual or dress-casual.

You don't have to be trapped in a world of confusion or frustration this summer. Just remember to pick out colors that don't draw attention to moisture, fabrics that are breathable and light, and try to stay away from short sleeve button downs. Before too long, we may all move out to the desert.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Go(atee) to Hell

When I think of the antithesis of Fatshion, I think of a large man wearing faux zebra fur Doc Martins, a pair of JNCOs, a rockabilly style button down with guitars printed all over it, long side sideburns and a bushy goatee. We've started to cover many Fatshion basics, but we've said very little about personal grooming. Before too long, many people start asking, "What about those sideburns and that goatee?" Willis is talkin' 'bout facial hair.

Here's the bomb. Facial hair should be avoided at almost all costs. That's right. I said it. Even with thin guys, facial hair only looks good about ten percent of the time. This is reduced to about one percent of the time that facial hair actually looks good on overweight men. There are a few reasons why. First, facial hair intended to mask double chins, fat cheeks, or recessed chins rarely performs as the wearer thinks, and often actually draws attention to the troubled area. When facial hair is allowed to grow long and ratty, it looks disgustingly unkept, and when it is kept short and groomed, it doesn't provide the masking effect that it was grown for in the first place. Second, facial hair is simply not fashionable. Sideburns, goatees, soul patches, mustaches, chin straps, full beards: you name it, it's just not in style. Third, with a lack of a jaw line, fat people are forced to end full beards at an arbitrary point along their double chins. When thin people have chiseled jaw and neck lines, there are natural places for facial hair to stop. With fat people, these lines are considerably blurred, and choosing a place to end your facial hair can be disastrous. Lastly, a stubbly day after look works for models and good looking people, but the same look makes overweight people look sloth-like.

The biggest key to facial hair is to look around yourself. Look at the facial hair of the people you run into. All those people who have hideous facial hair think that their facial hair looks great, just like you think yours does.

This post brings up one of the fundamental dilemmas of Fatshion: in the midst of trying to look your best and trying to maximize perceptions, where do personal taste and personal style enter the picture? The ultimate answer is that many issues of personal taste ( i.e. I love the feel of silk shirts or I love these sideburns) are in diametric opposition to the principles of Fatshion. This doesn't mean that you must give up all personal style choices; rather, it means that your personal style, over time, should become far more congruent with the principles of Fatshion.

Your facial hair isn't fooling anyone about your chin(s), it's not fashionable, it ends awkwardly, and women don't like it. Don't consider yourself the one exception who actually does look better with facial hair. Don't wait until tomorrow... Shave today.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Waistline Blues

A reader recently asked a very pertinent question about how high overweight people should wear their pants around their waistlines. This is a great question because guts force overweight people to an often difficult decision regarding their waistlines.

I need to start by saying that this issue really splits the world of Fatshion into two categories depending on body type. We'll start with the least typical type--pear shaped. Pear shaped people are those who carry their weight more like women than men--in their hips, thighs and ass. For these people, it's easier to wear pants higher because the hips provide a natural curve upon which pants can rest. The problem is, most moderately overweight people do not have this body type.

Typical overweight males are more often apple shaped than pear shaped. Apple shaped body types are categorized by a larger gut with a tapering deflated-man-ass. Essentially, apple shaped people are largest around the midsection and have an ass that is disproportionately small for their body size. Ten times out of ten, this causes problems with the issue of where someone's waistline falls. For moderately overweight people, pants should be worn below the gut but as high as possible other than that. There isn't any difference for the types of pants or the look you're trying to achieve, but keeping the pants as high as possible while resting below the gut is crucial.

The problems with the decision to go above the gut are that your waist size can instantly go from 42 to 52, and your style goes from fashion forward to nursing-home-esque in under four seconds.

Things that can help include purchasing slacks and jeans with "long rise" options. Eddie Bauer is a great place to purchase dress slacks because they offer long rise for a nominal charge. The long rise simply adds length between the crotch and waistline and is very important when trying to keep your pants as high as possible while maintaining a comfortable feel. Another viable option is purchasing suit separates as slacks. This allows you to have the pants tailored to your specifications for around $130.00.

The thing that we want to avoid at all costs is an intentionally sagging look. Don't be afraid to buy pants in a larger size so they will actually fit you where you need to wear them. Nothing looks worse than when a fat man is forced to sag because the waistline of his pants is too small, and remember to always wear a belt.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Summertime Footwear

With warmer weather approaching and the dreadful promise of another blazingly hot, fat-man-marginalizing summer ahead, it’s appropriate to begin a series discussing summer Fatshion. Let’s start from the ground up with footwear.

Footwear is the most easily recognizable way to determine what look someone is trying to achieve. Chinos and a button down can look dressy when worn with a polished dress shoe or incredibly laid back with a pair of open toed sandals. For a fat person wearing shorts, shoe selection is absolutely crucial.

First, a few don’ts. Never wear socks that come up past your ankle unless you’re playing soccer, and if you’re fat, this exception will never apply to you. Unless you plan on participating in an activity that requires you to take your shoes off, never wear flip flops. Woah! I know what you’re thinking. No flip flops? Listen, the fresh-off-the-volleyball-court look may work wonderfully for your thinner counterparts, but the flip flops have a much different, sloppy appearance on larger people. Low top running shoes like New Balance are ok, but try not to wear them if you’re wearing anything other than a t-shirt.

So, what should we wear? There are essentially three options. First, a Birkenstock sandal or clog. Classically styled and easily recognized, Birkenstocks provide the perfect sophisticated open toe look. It provides the ease and functionality of a flip flop with the versatility of a deck shoe. Second, plainly colored fashion forward sport shoes. Adidas, Ben Sherman, K-Swiss, and many other companies offer simple styles that go great with shorts. These shoes provide the versatility of a running shoe with a clean, more fashion conscious appearance. Lastly, the shoe that everyone should own, the casual loafer. Never worn with socks, casual loafers are the be-all, end-all of fashionable warm weather attire. Loafers should only be worn with button down shirts or golf shirts, and can also provide a great casual look when worn with a pair of chinos.

The one overarching theme of the footwear you choose is that it should be high quality. Nothing looks worse than when someone shows up in the Wal-Mart version of a Birkenstock sandal. Quality products will outlast their inferior counterparts and make you look a lot better at the same time.

So throw those ratty flip flops away, and say goodbye to shin-high socks. Embrace the warmer weather with a fresh, fashionable look.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006


It feels good to be back in the Fatshion saddle again. The good news is that I have decided to continue to update the Fatshion Blog regularly. I almost pulled a Jesus and threw the towel in, but after some consideration and support, there's just too much promise to pass up on. I was temporarily discouraged because I wasn’t sure if people were really getting it. However, I’ve been reinspired by affirmations that some people really do get it, and a reassurance from myself that I don’t care if people get it.

Check Back Often.