Athleta expands assortment of extended sizing

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Athleta expands assortment of extended sizing

By Dan Berthiaume - 01/22/2021

A specialty apparel retailer is making 70% of its spring 2021 collection available in extended sizes.

Athleta is expanding extended sizing (“1X-3X” or sizes 18-26) to more than 350 styles across activewear and performance lifestyle categories. The company’s designers and technical experts spent the last two years working with thousands of women to re-engineer and expand its extended sizing offering. 

By March, Athleta intends the number of styles available in extended sizing in-store and online to exceed 500, and will add new styles each season. The company expects to offer extended sizes across all categories by the end of 2022. The effort to expand extended sizing availability included reimagining the omnichannel shopping experience by highlighting a variety of body types across its e-commerce site and adding size-inclusive mannequins across all 200 stores.

Athleta listened to feedback from women to fully understand their needs and solve their pain points. The company will merchandise extended sizing the same as any other size. For each piece, the rack with size XXS - XL will also display sizes 1X - 3X, in each of the 200 Athleta stores nationwide. Additionally, all Athleta store employees will be bodySTRONG-certified through participation in mandatory inclusive sizing training. In this training, associates learn the principles of body-positive-appropriate language and tools for assessing comfort level to better serve customers. A portfolio that offers sizes XXS-3X is now a foundational element of Athleta. 

In spring 2021, Athleta will launch a new, holistic brand campaign entitled “All, Powerful,” an anthemic, multiplatform celebration of the beauty and power in all women. The brand will release an evocative manifesto alongside “All, Powerful” campaign visuals, including a takeover of the billboard atop the flagship Gap store in New York’s Times Square, featuring women styled in Athleta’s extended size range.

Athleta also has partnered with active, influential voices from within the extended sizing community to form a collective of consultants for the brand. They are wear-testing, hosting virtual community events and sharing feedback from their experiences on their Instagram feeds and stories. The multi-faceted group taking part in this collective are entrepreneurs, advocates, authors, fashion advisors and more.

“Empowering women and girls is core to our Athleta DNA. This brand promise comes to life across our expansive product offering and inclusive shopping experience,” said Mary Beth Laughton, president and CEO of Athleta. “We see this extended sizing offering as a key pillar of our growth goals, allowing us to invite even more customers into our community.”

Based in San Francisco and a Gap Inc. brand, Athleta operates about 200 retail stores across the country, a catalog, and the e-commerce site.