Jul 28

Well, I just had to support this petition against size discrimination in America.

As a plus size retailer, I have heard stories that have brought me to tears.

We have a chance to change how we are treated through laws which protect people of size–that is, the majority of people in the U.S.  Size is the only accepted form of discrimination in our society.  And now, there is a petition in place to let lawmakers know how we feel. Cool.

Yes, that’s right! Finally, a Federally mandated law which protects people of size against discrimination and it is long overdue.

So, How about you? Are you ready to add your name to the list that is currently running over 500+ strong?  We need to do all we can so that legislators take notice and listen to our voices.

The petition was initiated by Lisa Marie Garbo, an entrepreneur, and owner of her own nightclub, and a plus size woman herself, she decided it was time to take a stand against size discrimination.  As Lisa Marie states, “All overweight people should be shown the exact same rights as their size-accepted counterparts.  Discrimination, isolation and humiliation are words we all know well.  It is our goal that each one of us in the plus-size community replace those words with acceptance, celebration and dignity.”   Thanks to Lisa Marie for being a visionary and engaging all of us as we change the future!

Take note: The goal is to have 10,00 signatures as soon as we can!

So, here is your call to action.  Go ahead and read the entire petition and let your voice be heard.  This is your call to action.  Act now!

More as it happens. Jodell

Jul 24
And the winner is…
icon1 BlackCatPlus | icon2 BlackCatPlus News | icon4 July 24, 2009| icon32 Comments »

Plusshe has picked a winner of our Black Cat Plus Give-a-way. It’s our first Anniversary and we are so excited!   Have you check out Plusshe’s five favorite things yet? No? Go do it right after you sign up for our next give-a-way!

Congratulations to Madonna C. from Oklahoma! Madonna chose the Svoboda Annie Back Flap Pocket Jeans and the Center Gathered Top from Kiyonna in Kelly Green with her $100 gift Certificate!   Madonna said in her email to us, Thank you for the great $100 gift certificate to Black Cat Plus! I appreciate the opportunity to purchase some beautiful clothes. Thank you to Madonna and to all of our participants!  Stay tuned for more give-a-ways!

Want a chance to win something from Black Cat Plus?   Go to our promo page on Facebook.  You can win one of our Pure & Co wraps! That’s a $79 value.  They come in regular and plus size.

Wait! That’s not all!  You can enter both contests. We said! For a chance at the $25  Gift Certificate,m all you have to do:

1.  Follow Jodell Raymond CEO of Black Cat Plus on twitter for instant updates OR become a fan of Black Cat Plus on facebook.

2.  Comment on this blog post or one of our other blog posts.

3. Hey—Do all three: facebook, twitter, and comment on a blog post,  and we’ll enter your name twice.

Happy Anniversary Black Cat Plus! Stay tuned for more give-a-ways.

Jul 24

Fashion for the Majority! You bet!

The only independent print magazine devoted to plus size fashion, I know you will want to subscribe to this magazine.  Skorch will be available on line until the end of the year with its inaugural issue coming in September and then goes to print beginning in 2010! Subscriptions are $15 and $25. That’s it!  Isn’t that a deal?

Want to see what some Skorch history?

Skorch Magazine looks to be spot on with its feature articles on national and international plus size fashion for juniors and women, beauty, health and wellness, travel, new ideas and gadgets.  You will be so pleased and so proud to see the photos of their beautiful plus size models.  And are you an aspiring model, check out details for Skorch's nation wide model search?

Oh and---Here's another reason why we are so excited...

Black Cat Plus is really over-the-moon excited to be a part of the re-launch and the inaugural issue of Skorch Magazine.  Why do you ask?

O.k. we'll tell you! But shhhh It's a secret.

We'll be featured in an editorial piece. Woo hoo!

Congratulations to Jessica Kane and the team at Skorch! We are so proud of you and cannot wait to see what you have in store for us!

Jul 22

We’re Turning One and Giving You $25!

Black Cat Plus Celebrates its 1 year anniversary with a contest!

  1. Comment on this post or one of our other blog posts and leave your email address
  2. Become a fan of ours on Facebook OR Follow us on Twitter
  3. Do all three and you’ll be entered twice!

See? It’s easy! And, You’ll be entered for a chance to win a $25 gift certificate to Black Cat Plus. Woo hoo!

Legal Stuff: Void where prohibited. No purchase necessary. We mean it! And, check out our site to see what items you would choose as your fave plus size items! Ends 12:00 midnight est on Friday, july 31, 2009.   No, our families, cannot enter!

Jul 21
Drop Dead Diva? Hit or Miss?
icon1 BlackCatPlus | icon2 Uncategorized | icon4 July 21, 2009| icon35 Comments »

Plus size woman is a fabulous, professional, sexy, successful attorney. She can get anyone she wants and knows that her destiny is in her own hands. She recognizes that she is fabulous and goes about having all the things that— Wait. That’s not the plot.
Ugh. I reaaaally wanted to like this show. I really did. I have held off reviewing it because other’s reviews have been favorable and it looks as though Lifetime has hit the jackpot with the record setting ratings for this show. The Executive Producers have resumes that read like a Who’s Who in American Television. I keep going back to this show. And I keep thinking, “Well, maybe you are not getting it. Watch it again.” It is getting to the point where one of the characters can say one line and I say the next I have watched it so many times. And I am still not enthralled.

The other night before bed, I was watching Diva and tsk tsking and rolling my eyes. My husband was like, “Now what?” I said, “I just can’t put my finger on it and I wish I could. But I just can’t.” While on one hand, I am happy that Lifetime picked up the show (Fox was supposed to pick it up), on the other hand, I just so wish that they had:
#1: Altered the plot premise. Why? Just once can we see a plus size woman who has it all and knows what to do with it! Maybe that is why I am not in a happy mood about this show? When is that going to happen—when we see the person and not the size?
#2: Female executive producers, preferably a few of size, would be a good idea. Imagine that interview? If there are women Exec. Producers where are they?

I must admit that it is good that the show addresses prejudice and preconceived notions on weight and appearance. Maybe two or ten or twenty years from now we’ll look back at this show and say, “Yup, that started the discussion.”

The debut of Drop Dead Diva introduced the story of a fashion model with an at-ti-tude, The model, Deb, played by Brooke D’Orsay, has a fatal car accident and finds herself in front of the gatekeeper to Heaven, played by Ben Feldman. The gatekeeper believes that she is a self centered size 00 individual, who has never done anything bad or good. So as part of her journey to her real self, Deb is returned to life, but in a different body. Much to Deb’s chagrin, she finds herself in the body of a size 16 lawyer, Jane Bingum, played by Brooke Elliott.

And, thus, Deb takes over the body of Jane, a donut and chocolate loving, brilliant, shy, frumpy lawyer. And, we see glimpses of the two personalities as they converge into one personality with the best traits of each.

Since we have the plot that we have, what I am hoping for is that we can see some kind of true progression with Jane, played by actress Brooke Elliott. (If anything, I think Brooke will be a breakout star!) What I am hoping for is that the writers and producers avoid the obvious and dig deeper as we see a transformation in Jane’s character. And as she transforms, we all proceed in kind. And, we can all benefit.

More as it happens. Jodell

Jul 20

Yes, we are a plus size e-commerce site. Yes, our livelihood depends upon plus size women who see our clothes and decide that they cannot live without what we have to offer and they want to purchase and do so.

I am always on a quest for good health and fitness and those two topics are not size specific. Some days are better than others and I have a plan and do my best to stick to that plan. Sound familiar?

I am motivated, energized, and inspired by others’ success and willingness to take charge! Talking about plus size fashions and working with our customers always reminds me that It is up to each one of us to put our best foot forward and strive to be our best selves. I just hate seeing low self-esteem and low confidence when it comes to size. Sometimes one thing makes a difference: It can be real simple: A new outfit and dressin’ up! Or more of a challenge: workin’ thru some things with a professional or losing weight to feel better.

I have a saying, “Fix it or forget it.” That phrase has gotten me out of a lot of negative self-talk, reminded me that I am in charge, reminded me that it is about my health and well-being and that of my family and that today, “it” is whatever “it” is “and I have the power to change it.  If I need help, I ask,  because that is part of my job –to–fix it or forget it.

So, when Sommer Johnson, Publisher of Gemini Magazine, emailed me and told me about her goal to get healthy I was intrigued.  She is part of a really cool project called Mamavation
where a fabulous team of trainers, nutritionists, and cheerleading moms help one mom lose weight to
become the healthier version of herself.

And so we can all learn from her experience, Sommer will blog, vlog, and tweet her progress every step of the way.

As Sommer said in her email to me, “There are several reasons for me wanting to do the project.  One of the main reasons is that I’m currently at 295 lbs and I feel awful.  I will NEVER be a size 2, and between you & me, I don’t want to be (size 14/16 would be great!).  What I do want is to be a healthy, curvy, more active woman, wife, & mom.”  She is committed to helping herself and to inspire others to get motivated to get healthier than they are right now.  In order for her to win, we need to vote for her so that the mamavation team will choose Sommer as their Mamavation Mom.

OH–AND—If you have not done so, Check out Gemini Magazine. It’s a go-to, must have resource for Fashion, Beauty, Health, Lifestyle, and Celeb Features. Well organized and easy to read, Gemini Magazine’s message to, open minds, one cover, one article, one beautiful, sophisticated, professional, curvy, woman at a time” is right on!

And, so I don’t forget. Go Vote! Go Sommer–Cheers to your quest to Fix it! And remember, How it is is how YOU decide it is going to be!

We’ll be cheering you on!

More as it happens, Jodell

Jul 18

In just a few hours, we will be debuting our new A People United line. Taken from a Chilean folk song whose lyrics proclaim that “A People United Can Never Be Defeated” this company has provided over 1,000 scholarships for Nepali children to attend private schools. We are pleased to bring you items from a socially conscious company that provides a superior product.

The Tribe Collection which we feature in our show room and on our site, offers great pieces for plus size.  Each piece offers an up-to-date style,  a comfortable, relaxed fit, without compromising style, and features breath-able cotton fabric in generous cuts.  The tag on each garment reads:  Tribe is handcrafted by village weavers in Nepal.  Spun into thread and interwoven in the cloth, you may find natural imperfections such as those inherent in our lives, our minds and our bodies.  Please appreciate the unique quality each purchase offers as you contribute to the education of 160 of our Nepalese workers children and the future they will influence.

Any question in your mind now as to why we added A People United to our collections?  Founded almost 20 years ago, by Robert Gruber, a practicing attorney who went back to school to obtain a Master’s in Public Health.  While working for the Federal Government in the Public Health field, Robert came up with the idea for A People United.  Now a family affair, Robert’s wife, Laura Emberson, is the talented in-house artist and the creator of the line’s unique prints.  Both Robert and Laura and their children are often featured in promotional pieces wearing the clothing. Robert contacted us about a year ago and we were very impressed with the story of A People United.  And, we were ecstatic when we actually saw the line in person! We know you will be delighted to wear these pieces.

We have more items shipping for Fall ’09 and cannot wait until you see how all of the pieces can mix and match.  You’ll want to get them all!

A People United’s corporate strategy depends on the partnership with their boutiques and through you, our customers, to value the workmanship inherent in each garment and the knowledge that the line is not only beautiful and value-priced, but is also helping to create a better world.

We began with the Contour Jacket as the center-piece of the line and will add several tops and jackets, including the Contour jacket in different colors, this Fall.

Join me in welcoming A People United to Black Cat Plus: A unique story, a signature collection and a company for our time.

Jul 12

Well, we are past the July 4 holiday and the Summer Season ’09 is underway.  Trends that we thought were going to be strong have proved us correct.  While some reports in the media make you believe that shopping is a scandalous activity and splurging is an unspeakable crime, we believe that shopping is a necessity and material treat. And, in these times, I don’t know about you, but a little shopping therapy can do ya’ good!

The hottest looks of the summer: Plus size fashionistas are goin’ back to basics.  Roll up your straight leg jeans and wear them in a boyfriend jean style or as a new length for a capri pant.  Check out our NYDJ Stone Rivet Capris in Black. Are you in the 89% of those women who see jeans in their future?  The Stone Rivet Capris are chic and for many, can be worn from work to play.

Rolled up capris with cuts stone rivets at cuff

These jeans are perfect as they offer uniqueness with cute detailing.  Pair your jeans with our second summer trend: Cute tops. From patterns to solids we have the tops to pair with your going back to basics summer style.    We cannot sing the praises enough about our tops from Sienna Rose. We are proud to offer these fabulous patterns and styles.  Try Sweet Tea from Sienna Rose. Great colors and styles with a hint of lace and a great topper for your capris.

Feminine and flirty details are in this season. Small ruffles that follow the lines of the garment elongates the body and gives a slim-fitting silhouette, like this Vivienne Cinch Dress from Kiyonna are perfect for plus size women.

How about  trendy plus size active wear that you can take from yoga to running errands to travel? Pick pieces that are made of out of a breathable, stretch, loose-fitting fabrics like cotton and lycra blends and are not too tight or bulky.  Check out our offerings from Neon Buddha.  We adore their pullovers, jackets tees, and pants. Check out this Neon Buddha Passport pullover in dry chili.

Love the styles and colors that can take us right into Fall ’09  Have a great summer. Here’s to the red, white and blue!  More as it happens,  Jodell

Jul 7

Well, I’m a goin’ back to my roots!

When I told my family that BCP was going to host its own radio show, my father said, “Finally, that degree paid off!” (I worked in radio, cable television and advertising waaaaaay back in the beginning of my career)  Funny.  It is amazing how life comes full circle.

Listen to Blackcatplusradio on Blog Talk Radio

We are in the process of putting together our monthly radio show on blogtalkradio scheduled for the second Wed. of every month at 3pm. EST. (We hope to go to bi-monthly after the first few months)

We will have featured guests and experts from designers featured on Black Cat Plus as well as the latest news.  We’ll be talking about issues relevant to our lives including career, self-esteem, fashion, fitness, health, attitude and of course, style and fashion! You’ll be able to call in and talk live with our featured guests!

And, you will want to tune in for special product give-a-ways, offers and promotions!  Also, shows will be archived on our site for easy access if you are unable to tune for the live event!

We look forward to “seeing you” on the radio!  Stay tuned for details of our premiere show! You don’t want to miss it!  Got questions, feedback or suggestions? Email us at bcpradio@blackcatplus.com.

In the meantime, are you following us on Twitter?  And our Facebook Fan Page?

From the Catwalk,


Jul 6

I have either been singing the lyrics to Never Can Say Goodbye or Man in the Mirror over the past few weeks. Michael Jackson's untimely death forced me to reflect upon just how short and precious life really is for all of us, and how we must take action on things on our Action Item Lists and not make excuses.  I catch myself and I hear it all of the time from others--"I am not this" or "I am too much of that" or "It is not the right time." Stop. Now. So, I believe that two days after our nation's 233rd Independence Day is a perfect time to make a pact with yourself to assert your own independence and change things that you want to change in your life. Oh, I am not really talkin' about fashion, here! But if that is one of the things you need to change, go for it! I am talking about life! What is it that you want to change? To assert your independence over? Do it! NOW!

So, for each of us, the time is now to take a look in the mirror, and make a change. As I have said many times, "If it needs fixin' fix it or forget it!"

Embrace change, embrace independence, be thankful that you are an American woman living in a country that allows you to be whoever you choose, say whatever you want, wear what you want and have the freedom to be who you want to be! Make a pact with yourself not to worry about things that do not matter and focus---really focus on things and the people that do. In doing so, you will change yourself and in turn, change the world!  Agreed? Share your thoughts!~ Here's to the only constant in life--Change! Jodell