oddly enough, at the age of 57 and the same height i’ve been since the age of 16 but weighing more, i’m wearing the same size i wore 35 years ago.
something ain’t right.
when i was a kid, stores that carried downscale women’s clothing only went up as high as a size 12 or 14. upscale women’s clothing stopped at size 10 or even smaller. clothing from paris was made to fit adult women who were the size and shape of 10 year old boys. clothing today is made to be put on models who look as much like hangers as they can. someone should invent robotic runway models so no one has to be pressured to eat tissues to become one.
i don’t know what size the kids clothes stopped at when i was a kid because i never got to shop in those regular stores. my only shopping option as a young teenager was lane bryant where they carried only half-sizes. while is sound like a size accommodation – “oh, i’m between a 10 and a 12… i’m a 10 ½”, that’s not what half sizing meant. it meant that you wore fat sizes. kind of like husky in the boys’ department or what “women’s” sizing is now. (for you men out there, women’s clothing refers to all clothing for women, but women’s sizing refers to clothing sizes that are much bigger than regular women’s sizes. regular sized women’s clothing is carried in the “missy” department or the department sometimes labeled as “women”. got it?)
much as i would like to believe that i am the same size i was when i was 22, i know that it’s not true.
it’s called vanity sizing and the stores where you shop are all doing it. over the past 40 years, the actual measurements of women’s clothing have increased by an average of 4 inches, which means that most women’s clothing sizes are a size or two bigger than they used to be. funny, kind of snarky take on this here.
while the clothing measurements are keeping up with us as we get bigger, the labels are scaling down to make us feel better. and to keep us buying. maybe that explains the wall mart photos we all see on line.
there is no standardization in sizing in women’s clothing and that’s not likely to change anytime soon. on the surface it seems to make sense that a size 10 should be a size 10 should be a size 10, but labels sell their customer on an identity and a macy’s size 10 customer is simply not a j. crew size 10 customer.
now, in all fairness, this increase in size is not just about being overweight or obesity, since women are taller too and their bone structure is bigger. some of this larger sizing is due to better nutrition, less smoking, less restrictive corseting and breast implants. yep, implants. i’m guessing a lot of people are not complaining about that one.
you’ve probably all heard the recent flap over abercrombie and fitch’s ceo mike jeffries, who spouted off that a&f only wants to sell to “cool, good looking people”, which begs the question: “why are they selling to mike jeffries?” people expanded jeffries’ cool remark into protesting that a&f doesn’t carry larger sizes for girls (not so sure a lot of grown women shop in a&f). well, they do carry larger sizes, they just vanity label them more aggressively than most other stores and you can tell that because they carry xsmall and xxsmall and double zero. my guess is you can pick up a lot of that tiny a&f merchandise in places like tjmaxx and marshall’s, ‘cuz not a lot of girls are buying it. By the way, if you are seeing a lot of only small sizes on the racks when you go into a store, it’s because the larger sizes are all sold out. And the department buyer is stupid.
you will be witnessing the end of a&f because they are business idiots. when 67% of the apparel purchasing population falls into what’s being called the plus size category, cutting them out of your business model (not to mention insulting them along the way) is just plain stupid. you gotta sell a lot of $150 ripped jeans and $50 t-shirts to make up for those pr mistakes.
every women will tell you that she’s got at least three, maybe four sizes in her closet and if she doesn’t she’s either got a lot of money for custom clothes or she’s lying. and by the way, any woman who insists on sharing her size with you is a jerk.
i have to admit to being hesitant to support the “let’s all be fine with huge sizes” thing, just because we all know that it’s not healthy. it’s just not and you can’t vanity your way out of it. conversely, thin or skinny people are no better humans than anyone else. let’s just get rid of that nonsense too.
you know that you should be fit and healthy and take care of your body. you also know when you feel good physically and have the best idea of what shape your body is. no amount of fashion dictation is going to change that you got your mother’s thighs or your father’s paunch and no amount of reading nonsense in fashion magazines should influence what you know to be the best for yourself.
buy what looks and feels good on you or make your own clothes or get them tailored to fit you properly, cut out the size tags when you get home and forget the rest. look and feel fabulous.