It’s raining confident men! The men have taken noticed and begun to let their presence be known now more than ever. Daniel Grimsley–a.k.a. Frank N’ the City–is breaking barriers as a male plus-size blogger! He is on the rise and we wanted to spotlight him this month.
Tell us why you started “The Frank N the City” blog?
Franknthecity has become more than I ever dreamed of or ever imagined. Growing up in a small town where fashion was never highlighted, I found comfort in not only clothing, but making a statement in my clothing. When Instagram first made its appearance as a social media platform, I began to post pictures of myself, my accessories, or my shoes–and people loved it! There was a stigma around people in the plus-size community not being confident and only taking pictures of their faces and never doing full profile pictures. One day, I decided to begin posting my outfits and that has propelled me to the Franknthecity I am today. In April of 2017, I changed my social media handles to “Franknthecity,” a blog created to highlight my journey in the DMV-breaking society’s standard for plus-size men–one standard at a time.
What motivated you to launch your “B Positive Campaign?”
The “B Positive Campaign” was launched to remind people to always remain positive in a society that constantly attempted to break them down. Being positive in the plus-size community has been a slow building process, but every day it gets easier. Society is becoming more accepting of what it means to be body positive and beginning to help us embrace who we are, regardless of our body type. The “B Positive Campaign” is set to relaunch in November with all new content, possible features with other bloggers, and a whole new look.
What makes your blog different from the rest?
Franknthecity is somewhat my alter ego. I spent so many years hiding who I truly was and letting society define what I “should” wear or what looked better on my body type. My blog is different because I am daring. As a men’s plus-sized blogger, it is sometimes hard to set yourself apart from other men because there is a lack of stylish, affordable clothing in this community, and with their being such a lack it is hard to stand out. I am not afraid to grab those statement pieces…those pieces that will make a room go silent when you walk in the room. For me, it has always been more than just finding garments that look good, I want to look good and stand out while doing it.
In 2017 we are now seeing more “Big and Tall” men being proud of who they are in the industry. Why do think that is?
It has never been a more perfect time to be plus size or big and tall. Embracing your curves and being body positive is on trend right now. Society is becoming more accepting of the big and tall man because you see us being fashionable, you see us with no shirt on at the pool, and you see us in major ad campaigns with large industry brands. We’ve not been accepted for so long by major brands that brands were created specifically for us to be confident in our bodies. The “Big and Tall” man is confident, daring, and not afraid to show the world that we are unstoppable.
Yes. This issue often goes unnoticed because there is a lack of understanding of what it truly means to be “body positive.” For me, I have always known I was not the size as a lot of people around me. I was one of the largest black boys in my class, but being called “fat” never bothered me. It was never enough to make me go cry, because I was already self-aware that I was indeed a fat boy. So being comfortable in your skin starts from a young age and it takes time to get your confidence to a level where it cannot be touched or tainted. In the black community, we are not always so vocal about men voicing their insecurities because they will seem “weak” or less of a man. We have to remove this stigma and remember that men are still men, even if they are not completely comfortable with who they are. So, we must embrace our little black boys and instill confidence in them, so they, too, will know that they can change the world. We must teach our little black boys that being different is okay, as long as you own that difference as a strength and not a weakness.
What was your most successful/happiest moment as a blogger?
My happiest moments of being a blogger was me being afforded the opportunity to sit on a panel at Full Figured Fashion Week. The State of the Plus Size Community was a panel discussion that was curated to focus on the society’s current views on the plus-size community, some of the issues in the community, and how the industry viewed people of size. It was just such an amazing event to be a part of with individuals that instilled so much into me in just that moment. I consider myself a fairly new blogger and just being asked to be on a panel such as this was so inspiring. It reminded me that dreams can come true when divine opportunities meet passion and purpose.
What would you say or what type of advice would you give to an aspiring blogger?
“Just do it” is the best advice any blogger could give to the next. Being a blogger is NOT easy and sometimes not always fun. You spend lots of money on clothing, spend hours doing photoshoots, and editing photos is not always fun. When you curate an audience, they look for you to post and it’s so vital that you actively engage with your followers. Talk back to them, comment under their pictures or even spam their pages. Blogging is not just about taking pictures for likes, it is all about inspiring others through fashion and media. As a blogger, you would be nowhere without your followers and people sometimes forget that. Always be humble, work harder than hard and you will see success.
What are your views on the plus size industry?
The plus size industry is one that is growing. Every day it is a fight to be included and it as definitely gotten better. People are starting to hear us and accept that we are not going anywhere. Large brands are creating things for us and so are smaller indie brands. Society is starting to wake up and see that plus size is not a trend and it is not going away. There is a plethora of acceptance when it comes to women in the industry, but my hope is that in the future there is more inclusion in the “big and tall” industry. My hope is to see more brands include men of size on their websites and in their stores. I would love the day where I could one day go into a Zara or H&M and find a pair of pants my size. That would be the day that the industry has shifted for me.
What is your take on men embracing their body?
There has been a lack of men embracing their body for years. We see men who are in shape on covers of magazines and in campaign ads every day. You never see men of size on TV, in commercials, or anywhere for that matter truly embracing their body. Social media has given us the opportunity to shape society’s views on men of size and how we, too, can embrace our bodies as well. It took me years to go to pools shirtless, and after doing it for the first time over the summer I felt so free and empowered. I felt this feeling because I did not do it to be accepted or to be seen, I did it because I wanted to do it and it was comfortable. As men, we have to allow ourselves to be vulnerable and gain a sense of self-awareness so that we can embrace not only our body, but ourselves as individuals in this society.
Why do you like the “LUXE KURVES BRAND?”
The Luxe Kurves brand is different because it cannot be put into a box. I am always so inspired by platforms that not only highlight people that are already established, but people that are on their way as well. I think Luxe Kurves is relatable for every kind of person and not just marketed toward one particular type of woman or man. I think this is so important because there is such a need for media to embrace every type of person regardless of race, sex, or size.
What is next for “Frank n the City”?
I will be releasing my own personal lifestyle and fashion blog site very soon. I will, of course, be uploading new content to YouTube and continue to spread awareness in the community. I will be on some great panels in 2018 and I will be hosting some events before the close out of this year. Hosting events has always been something I have wanted to do, so I am so grateful that I am afforded the wonderful opportunities. I will also be relaunching the “B Positive Campaign” later this year as well in a special way. I have already begin planning 2018 and although I cannot yet share all of my upcoming projects, I advise you to stay tuned because 2018 is going to be something miraculous.