Saturday, October 8, 2011

But does it fit?

Just a warning to my son, this blog is all about body issues, clothing, figures and such things.  You might want to skip it.

Okay, so that's out of the way.  I hate to shop.  Or I guess to be fair, I hate to clothes shop. It is one of my least favorite things to do. Part of it is I am cheap and clothes are not.  But the main reason is nothing ever fits right.  So shopping is a chore.  But a necessary one.  I realized this past summer that I never really replaced my old clothes with new ones as I lost weight.  Or at least with anything more than t-shirts and some casual sweaters.  Basically just enough to get by but not enough to really have any sort of variety.  And definitely no grown up clothes.

I talked about having to buy a dress for my father's funeral because I didn't own one, but this was reaching even worse than that stages.  A wardrobe that had once been filled with slick skirts and suits and dress pants had morphed into a closet full of jeans and t-shirts that had seen better days.  Now I could justify these choices when I was doing more massage.  T-shirts and yoga pants or jeans were my uniform.  But as I have gone farther and farther away from massage I haven't updated my choices.  Part of it is that feeling of why bother?  I am writing for part of the day, cleaning house for part of the day and running errands for part of the day, what does it matter?  And the best answer I have for that is I am vain.  I like to look good.  I like to know that I am looking my best when I leave the house, or when I am home for that matter. So it was time to upgrade. Not going back up to the level I needed to dress when I was dealing with clients and meetings during the day, but a few steps up from schlub were needed.

So on to shopping.  I told Brent I wanted to update the choices with some more grown up clothes.  He was all for it, he has been suggesting I go shopping for awhile.  Though I hadn't said anything I think the standing in front of the closet frowning was a pretty good giveaway that I wasn't happy with what I saw in there.  So shopping we went.  Did I mention how much I hate shopping?  It is one of the times in my life where I can go from happy and loving life to questioning the very existence of mankind in the time it takes to try on three or four items.  I cannot even imagine the level of preparation Brent has to make if he knows I am going to go clothes shopping.  The mood swings in one store alone could flattened someone who wasn't ready!

So why is it so traumatic?  Because finding something that fits is always a chore.  You see the outfit on the mannequin and it looks great, until you look closer and see they have the clothes pinned and tucked into a silhouette that is not at all how the clothes are actually cut.  And here is the part of the blog where I am going to rant about clothing and marketing and sizes.  I am curvy.  There were no straight lines used when I was designed.  Not in the way I think or act or the way I look.  Okay, I am exaggerating, my hair and teeth are straight, but other than that I am a series of curves all hooked together.  Over the years though curvy has been co-opted by marketing people to mean heavy.  If you are looking through a fashion magazine and see the headline, "Dress for your body type!" you can almost guarantee there will be the following body types, straight, apple, pear and curvy.  But curvy is not what curvy used to be,  it's what used to be referred to as full figured.  I guess they think heavy people caught on to full figured meaning heavy so they needed to come up with something else and decided on curvy.  Let me let you in on a little secret, when I was heavy I knew I was heavy and calling myself full figured or curvy didn't change that.

So anyway, if I find something that fits in the chest it is too big through the shoulders and the waist.  If I find a a pair of pants that fit the hips and butt they gap at the waist. If I find something that fits the shoulders I can't smoosh my chest into it.  If I hold it up to my waist and it's the right size the odds of me being able to ease it over my hips to get there are slim to none.  And this doesn't change when I am a size 4 or a size 16 which I have been both and everything in between.  When I lost weight a few years ago and then kept on losing weight to the point where friends started saying things like, "You're done right?  You're not losing anymore?" instead "Hey!  You look great!" I thought I was going to fit everything.  I thought now is my time to be able to just pick things up off the rack and BOOM!  insta fit!  Nope, not even then.  And now that I have put back on enough weight that I am back to "Oh my gosh, you look great!  You had gotten way too thin last time I saw you!" forget about getting most things to fit.

Thinking about this blog this morning as I was getting dressed I decided to take my measurements.  My hips are 3 inches bigger than my bust and my waist is 10 1/2 inches smaller than my bust.  So you see the problem?  I am about as balanced top and bottom as I can be.  I always say that my big butt doesn't bother me because it keeps me from face planting due to my chest.  I am an hourglass.  And clothes are not made for me.  If I wear a wrap dress or belt up whatever I am wearing I can fake it, but to pull something off a rack that is designed for me isn't going to happen.  Now don't get me wrong, I love being va-va-voomy.  It's taken me a few years to get to the point where I truly appreciate my figure, but I am there.  I just wish that there were those out there designing for me.  I am not the only hourglass in the world, and with the preponderance of breast implants out there I am not the only woman in the world whose back are shoulders and narrower than her chest.

Enter Levi's.  I have been seeing the advertising for months for their Curve collection.  Now Levi's and I go way back.  In high school I used to wear men's 501s. Because they were designed to sit a little lower I could get a pair that didn't gap so drastically in the back and still fit my butt.  Yes, I was built this way in high school as well.  And let me tell you guys, don't ever say to a young girl, "They didn't make girls like you when I was in school." you might think you are being flattering but you are being creepy  And they did, they just didn't date guys like you.  Any way back to Levi's...A few years ago they released a  line that they called "curvy"  it was cut a little fuller through the hip and thigh and the waist came up a bit higher in the back than the front.  This kept me covered when I sat down, loved them.  So when they came up with this new line I was dying to try them out and finally they were in the stores.  Or at least 3 out of the 4 selections were.  I tried on the demi curve and the bold curve styles.  The demi made my butt look fabulous with a minimum of gap at the waist.  Any woman with a more substantial rear end will tell you that getting a pair of jeans that doesn't smash and spread your butt halfway down your thighs is a great thing!  Then I tried on the bold curve.  I have never ever put on a pair of jeans that fit me better in the waist.  No gap, no space, no muffin top, nothing but a wonderful fit.  Then I turned around to check out the rear-view....EEP!  I looked like I had a shelf back there!  Umm...nope...not ready to embrace the rear that much!  Going on line and putting in my sizes their website actually suggested the Supreme curve for me...we will see if I try that or not.

But here is my point, Levi's gets it.  Curvy means something more than just being heavier than everyone else.  Women have curves and by having a variety of curve levels in their jeans to choose from you can pick the one that fits your particular set.  Me, I am a bold masquerading as a demi today.  But by having these different cuts in different sizes if you are a size 16 with a flat bottom you can get the slight curve jeans and they will fit as nicely as my size 8 with a bubble butt did!  Can we get more designers to do this?  To give us the options of fit styles?  And please, can we go back to curvy meaning hourglass?

Because I still need to buy some more clothes to round out my wardrobe and I would like them to fit my rounded out figure....

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