Raquel Velez has become another Kickstarter success as she managed to raise 50 thousand dollars. After having a hard time trying to find her own size, Raquel had no choice but to make clothing herself. Thus, she created a plus-size women’s outdoor apparel brand. We mention outdoor because Raquel loves spending time skiing, camping and more.
Many retailers do not have larger sizes in store for outdoor clothing for sports. Being plus size herself, Raquel was tired of the rejection from popular brands like Columbia and Patagonia. It is certainly discouraging when only smaller sizes are available despite 58 percent of American women wear a size 14 or larger.
When asked about the Kickstarter campaign, she says, “I wanted to use Kickstarter to send a message to the outdoor industry in a public way, since they often neglect people of size and color, and show big name brands that customers like me do exist,” Vélez said. “And I think our message has been sent loud and clear, so it will be interesting to see how brands respond. I’m starting where other people are just trying to catch up.”
Raquel Velez Finds What Outdoor Clothing Companies Are Missing
After spending time creating her own clothing, Raquel heads to the direction of her old favorite sport. Raquel loves to ski and was asked about it, she recites an a memory by saying, “I learned how to ski in sweatpants under rain pants and a hoodie under a coat because that’s what I had,” Vélez said. “But when I was ready to upgrade, nothing fit.”
She continues “Outdoor brands don’t show people of size in any of their advertising. So, it makes you think, ‘Oh, I’m just the weirdo who likes to ski and doesn’t fit into anything,’” Vélez said. “And this creates a whole chicken before the egg problem where because people don’t see plus-size people being represented in the industry, they don’t think they exist.”