roxy earle joe fresh

T.O.’s own Roxy Earle launches a size inclusive swimwear line

You might recognize Roxy Earle from her days as a Real Housewife of Toronto, or from her #MySizeRox online movement dedicated to promoting body positivity and encouraging women to love themselves no matter their shape or size.

Now, Earle — who is also a fashion designer — is launching a limited edition swimwear capsule collection with Joe Fresh, one of Canada’s leading fashion retailers. Co-designed by Earle and the Joe Fresh team, the collection will feature five pieces, including a one-piece swimsuit, two-piece bikini, tunic cover-up and sandals, available in sizes XS to 3X. It will be available online and in select retail stores beginning May 13, 2021.

“In collaborating with Joe Fresh, I was able to create elevated, stylish and luxurious swimwear pieces at an affordable price point,” says Earle. “From my personal shopping experience, if you’re above a size 10, shopping for swimwear can be extremely difficult, expensive and draining. For this collaboration, I wanted to bring a positive shopping experience to customers, designing pieces that were cost-effective, on-trend and, most importantly, pieces that women would feel incredible wearing.”

The pieces are crafted with fabrics and cuts that allow the wearer to move freely, and that highlight their curves. While sketching them out, Earle says she had many open conversations with Joe Fresh, and each design was carefully made with great attention to detail. She also connected with her Instagram followers, many of whom follow the #MySizeRox movement, to gather feedback on what they might want in their swimwear.

This isn’t Earle’s first foray into plus-size fashion. She also served as the collaborating creative director of Roxy Earle x Le Château, a line made in partnership with the retailer in 2018, and for women from size 0 to 22W. In 2019, body positive company Knix launched its swimwear line with four styles, including one in collaboration with Earle.

Her latest line, in particular, comes at a time when the subject of size inclusivity has only grown more contentious, with many brands being criticized for offering limited ranges in sizing, and heightening the discussion on what it actually means to be an inclusive fashion brand.

roxy earle joe fresh

After all, 68 per cent of American women are plus-size and, according to a 2013 report from the NPD Group, two-thirds of plus-size women in Canada reported shopping for clothes that fit their size was stressful due to limited options and greater prices.

“The state of inclusivity has moved forward, however there is room to grow,” says Earle. “When brands do not produce clothing that fit curvy women or charge a premium, we strip women of their confidence and make them feel unworthy and that they don’t belong. These women receive the message that you shouldn’t be going swimming, you’re not worthy of going swimming. When brands become more inclusive, it’s extremely powerful for women. [In my Joe Fresh collection], the extended size piece is the exact same price as their regular sizes and are merchandised in the same section.”

Having built a brand on empowerment, Earle is finding other ways to help women find their confidence, too, and will be soon launching an app called Ana to accomplish just this.

“It’s a digital evolution of my ongoing mission to inspire a generation of women to feel happier and more confident,” says Earle. “The app is as much a positive mindset coach as it is a robust tool for understanding and tracking a woman’s unique gynecological health. For me, I see clothing as a way to make women feel confident, and Ana is a tool that they can use for their mind to feel free – it all goes together.”

Article exclusive to STREETS OF TORONTO