Megan Evans,

Correspondent (Fashion)


Now in the middle of June, it is time to start digging out your bikinis for those long awaited summer holidays and sunbathing days. But is the prospect of unveiling your body to the world, a little daunting? Fear not! Size 18 fashion blogger Gabi Gregg has created a two-piece popularly known as the ‘fatkini’ designed to ‘conceal yet reveal’.

Women of fuller figures, and those who do not sport a size 6 frame, often feel punished by the fashion world for enjoying a good meal. Despite hundreds of gorgeous swimwear prints and designs available each season, most of us habitually feel uncomfortable and insecure about the prospect of wearing a two-piece. Even those who look great in a bikini and should show off their bodies with deserved confidence, feel slightly daunted about exposing the odd lump and bump or the odd dimple of cellulite.

The problem is undoubtedly more widespread than the abundant bikini collections on sale would have us believe. Shoppers are regularly shown that anyone above a size 16 should go to designated areas that scream ‘plus size over here!’ where the clothes, underwear, swimwear, footwear, all suggest that we need to hide, to avoid certain prints, colours and designs.

Swimwear is definitely one of those areas where ‘plus size’ women are shown that they should avoid showing off some skin. It is as if girls with curves are not allowed to tan, at least not in public. Gabi Gregg in designing the ‘fatkini’ felt this was the case; “I think a lot of the swimwear on the market right now for plus sizes are just kind of frumpy and matronly, designed to cover us up”.

Fatkini’s (the term used lovingly) are Gabi Gregg’s answer to the issue. The 1950’s style two-piece bikini consisted of high-waisted bottoms and bust enhancing halter tops to make women feel more comfortable whilst still looking sexy. It emphasises curves in a flattering way; the designs that are young and fun making boobs and bums look voluptuous and sexy.

They demonstrate that there is no need to feel shy to show off your figure; the design conceals as much as it reveals and suits all body shapes and sizes. This is the great thing about the ‘fatkini’, it has the potential to reach a market of women who do not meet a ‘plus size’ criterion but feel too uncomfortable in the average two-piece bikini. Its is not just functional but also stylish and sexy. This could be the start of an evolution in swimwear design.

The Fatkini has been selling like hotcakes in the U.S and this success could see the Fatkini brought across the pond! I think many British women would agree that there is definitely a need for bold and flirty swimsuits for curvier women.

Image Courtesy:  TrendVogue (http://www.flickr.com/photos/88558878@N04/8862759902/sizes/m/in/photolist-evaXKd/)