ST. CLOUD -- A store with a focus on plus-sized clothing for women is closing their St. Cloud location.

The last day of business for Lane Bryant, located in Crossroads Center, is January 26.

Company spokesperson Caroline Aponte confirmed the closure in an email to WJON. Aponte did not respond to questions about how long the St. Cloud store has existed, or if employees would be offered employment at other locations.

Ariel Kirst moved to St Cloud several years ago and says she “rejoiced” when she found out there was a Lane Bryant in the area.

“There aren't a lot of clothing shops for plus-sized ladies,” Kirst says. “Lane Bryant finally gave me a shopping experience that wasn't embarrassing and awful. Shopping suddenly became a fun experience – not a total train wreck.”

Kirst, who began buying Lane Bryant clothing about 10 years ago, describes the store's options as "beautiful, professional and trendy."

“(Lane Bryant) doesn't make us look like we're wearing potato sacks – which often happens when people design “normal clothes” and then attempt to stretch them into plus sizes," Kirst explains.

Lane Bryant's locations in Maple Grove and Coon Rapids will remain open. Kirst says she doesn't plan to travel to either store, but will probably shop the brand online.

Kirst says she'll miss the experience of shopping in the store.

"The staff are always so ready to help me and give me honest opinions on what looked good on my figure," Kirst says.

"There isn't enough of a market for plus-sized bodies. Losing the big one in town is a blow.”

Lane Bryant sells clothing in sizes 10 and up. The first store opened in 1904 in Ohio, selling maternity clothing. Today, the chain operates stores in 46 states.

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