It was sometime around 2008, just before the first credit crunch began to bite, that the UK high street began to seriously rock. Chains like River Island, Warehouse, Oasis, H&M with their guest collections, and Debenhams with their "Designers For..." collections, all began to up their game in response, some would argue, to the challenge of Primark.
It was revealing that, in the course of researching this feature to determine which of the high street stores currently offer size 18 and over, the sizes most frequently sold out on the stores' websites - and we are talking brand new spring merchandise here - were the 18s, 20s and 22s.
For those women who hover around the average UK height - a somewhat petite 5 foot 4 ins - the idea of being model-tall can seem achingly desirable. The reality for those women who actually are significantly above average height, is not quite so appealing.
It may be icy outside, but in Hampstead and Hale, Stanmore and Shadwell, women's thoughts are turning to bikinis, espadrilles and assignations with a St Tropezmitt in preparation for a winter sun trip.
It's mid-December, so you have already purchased (or very sensibly unearthed from your wardrobe), the LBD/tuxedo jacket-and-trousers combo you plan to wear for any festive do's that may crop up over Chanucah or New Year. So this is the moment to think about how to ramp up the glamour.