Skip to main content

Meet one of the leading plus-size fashion advocates in MN

Cake Plus-Size Resale and Arc's Value Village are hosting a pop-up shop and panel discussion centered around plus-size clothing and body positivity.

The plus-size clothing market in the Twin Cities is seeing an upswing due to body positive advocates like Cat Polivoda.

For women who wear sizes 14 and up, the clothing selection at most retail stores isn't that extensive – especially fashionable attire. 

Three years ago, Polivoda took it upon herself to do the digging and locating of on-trend, plus-size clothing. Starting from her own closet and sifting through secondhand clothing stores, Polivoda collected pieces to resell online and at pop-up shops. 

From virtuality to reality

Now, Polivoda is ironing out the final details for a brick-and-mortar shop. After overachieving her crowdfunding goal on Indiegogo and landing "InDemand status," it became clear that the local plus-size fashion community is more than ready for a permanent, one-stop shop for affordable threads in sizes that fit them.

Polivoda's summer campaign raised the base funds to make the switch from a virtual space called Cat's Closet to a physical store that will be called Cake Plus-Size Resale. Polivoda said she decided on the name Cake, because "it speaks to anti-diet-culture in the best kind of 'life is short, eat the cake' type of way!"

Polivoda added that the physical store will lead to a larger online shop. The clothing selection will expand to include masculine and androgynous styles. Plus customers can expect frequent-shoppping rewards, plus-size accessories, body-positive merchandise, and events. A clothing rental subscription program is coming in the spring. This spring, Polivoda also plans to hire a staff. 

New buy-sell model

One major detail that will remain the same is the resale concept. "The nature of my shop allows clothing prices to be really accessible for many people," Polivoda said. However, to make use of her new space and offer a wider variety of clothing, she'll be "moving to an outright buying model where customers can bring their gently used, plus-size clothing in to sell to the shop for cash or store credit. "I adore giving people shopping experiences full of options and possibilities, instead of the scarcity that comes with only being able to choose from one plus-size rack in the back," Polivoda added.

Bringing body positivity to FWMN

Before Cake opens its doors on October 6, Polivoda will set up her portable racks once again tonight (September 12) at the Plus Size Pop-Up Shop and Panel Discussion. Polivoda will co-host the event alongside Michelle Raven of Arc's Value Village. 

The two women had been thinking of organizing a plus-size fashion event for a while, so Raven suggested hosting it during Fashion Week MN. "I haven’t really been as active with Fashion Week MN previously, because I haven’t seen a lot of plus-size representation, Polivoda said. "It’s been a great experience so far, and I’m happy we can add an important voice to the programming taking place this week."

Polivoda said she plugs her core values of body positivity, fat liberation, intersectional feminism, and social justice into her shop. Although she loves fashion and styling, she added that there is more to her daily work in the plus-size fashion world. "What’s really important to me is helping people feel comfortable and confident in their bodies," Polivoda explained. "Clothing can sometimes play a large part in that." 

Plus-size panel event

At tonight's event, panelists will engage in a guided discussion on being a fashion-conscious, plus-size clothing customer. They plan to address underrepresentation in the market and celebrating body positivity. The thought leaders and tastemakers that will guide the conversation include Project Runway Season 16 contestant Samantha Rei, Jessica Barrett of Machine Shop, Char Dobbs of Char Style & Image, Ryan Kroening of Events by Lady K, and Molly May of Six Peaks.

This mid-FWMN gathering will take place at Surly Brewing and is free to with an RSVP

Next Up

MNBCA - Balsimo 1

Woman admits to role in St. Paul man's gruesome murder

A 32-year-old Duluth woman has taken a plea deal in the case of a 34-year-old St. Paul man's murder.

Screen Shot 2022-06-30 at 11.18.35 AM

'Living nightmare’ alleged at Savage, Minn. rabbit sanctuary

"Peacebunny Cottage" is now the subject of an animal cruelty investigation.


Tractor tips on embankment, killing man in Kandiyohi County

The tractor reportedly tipped and fell on top of the man, pinning him underneath.

Sloane Martin

Sloane Martin teams with Mike Golic Jr. for college football broadcasts

Martin, 33, lives in Minnesota and continues to climb the sports broadcasting ladder.

Melvin Carter

St. Paul plans to extend $500 payments to low-income families

The expansion would give more than 300 families a monthly payment of $500.

16362 County Rd 81, Maple Grove, Minnesota - October 2021 (4)

Use of car seat in crash that killed child still under investigation

The mother of the child was treated for injuries not considered to be life-threatening.

Screen Shot 2022-06-29 at 4.53.56 PM

Abortion-rights protestors clash with driver in downtown Duluth

Police say they've cleared the driver of any wrong-doing.


Report: Hundreds of Delta flights for holiday weekend don't have pilots

It could be a brutal travel weekend due to major staffing issues at Delta.


Animal Humane Society plans trailblazing new campus

Take a look inside the plans for a first-of-its-kind adoption center and animal care campus.


Minnesota reports 'concerning level' of syphilis cases

The Minnesota Department of Health says most of the cases are being discovered in the northern part of the state.


5 stylish looks from Fashion Week MN's kickoff event

Fashion Week MN (FWMN) commenced Thursday with a high-energy, social media-inspired event.

MN-made gift idea: Makwa Studio scarves and hats

Minneapolis textile artist and designer Maggie Thompson makes clothing inspired by her Ojibwe heritage and the great outdoors.

MN-made gift idea: AK Collective vintage apparel and handmade cards

Aimee Kriegl carefully curates vintage items to sell at her northeast Minneapolis studio.

Fashion Week MN: Harlem Renaissance vibes hit Minneapolis

This fashion week runway event featured an all-POC model lineup and a celebration of Nubian heritage.

MN-made gift idea: Angela Valentine Handbags

Longtime graphic designer Angela Olson's attention to detail is all over her hand-crafted, colorful handbags.

This St. Paul thrift shop is on-trend, affordable too

TEN provides a judgement-free space featuring personal shopping, by appointment.

MN-made gift idea: Cedar & Stone canvas and leather goods

Luke Borkenhagen creates durable bags and backpacks for both city life and outdoor adventures.

MN-made gift idea: Koonyai Studio jewelry

Beau Sinchai creates modern earrings and necklaces out of concrete and mixed metals.