Tuesday, January 15, 2008

What size are you - Really?

This sounds like a really good idea. Now, if they would just add all the plus sizes to it so we could tell if a Lane Bryant 4X is the same as a Liz & Me 4X is the same as a Cathy Daniels 4X (from experience, they aren't all the same). It's one of the main reasons I don't like shopping online, unless I've actually tried on the particular brand and know how it fits. I know I can wear a 4X in Liz & Me from Catherine's, I have a lot of them in my closet (bought in the store and online). But most Cathy Daniels tops are too short (for my taste, anyway) and the proportions are off on me. Lane Bryant, well, nothing in the stores I like, and the catalog, I haven't ordered from them because what's in their catalog isn't in their store, so I can't try before I buy. I'm not about to pay shipping and handling for something I can't wear and then have to pay shipping to exchange it for another size that may or may not fit.
And when it comes to jeans/slacks, forget it. Most of them, I need talls for the legs to be long enough, but when I buy talls, the waist in front hits me just under my bra band. Average length is too short in the legs, but the waist in front is still too high (I must have more ass than belly, because I can tell you the only way the waistband would hit me at my waist is if I was nine months preggers). Depending on brand, I wear anything from a size 26 to a 32, and going by the measurements on their charts doesn't do a whole lot of good (RightFit is a prime example of this, the chart says I'm a blue 10, but I ended up buying a blue 8 in average length since the talls were about 8 inches too long).
What I really wish would happen: Clothing designers/manufacturers would get together and say ok, a size 0 is this set of measurements, size 2 is this set, size 4 is this set, etc all the way up to whatever the largest size is (60 or however high they want to go) and these are going to be the measurements for every garment made from now on. And then the manufacturers need to get on QA's asses to make sure that the people who are doing the actual sewing aren't making the seams larger or smaller than designed (and this happens, I worked in a garment factory and saw it every time we were pushed to do more faster, quality goes down the drain when it's quantity that's demanded). But that's a dream world, sad to say.


  1. I agree - even the sizes within clothing lines are not standard. LB is a prime example. Sometimes I wear a 22/24, mostly a 26/28. And their pants are all over the map. I think I have pants in three different sizes from there that all fit pretty much the same.

    Old Navy is another pet peeve...MOST of their stuff runs big. I recently ordered a pair of jeans (26 reg), a dress (4x) and two tops (4x). The dress fit perfectly, the shirts were both too big (but I didn't bother returning them because it would have cost more to ship them back than they cost) and the jeans fit really well right out of the dryer..or with leggings underneath when it's cold. I've sent them so much hate mail about carrying plus in the stores again...

    Avenue - I hate their pants. I can't find a size that fits right. Averages are too short, talls are obscenely long, and they're cut really straight up and down. Their dresses are all a weird length on me.

    I wish I had the patience to learn to sew....

  2. goingloopy - It's funny, but when I took home ec in high school, I wasn't very good at sewing (and this was despite learning to sew on a treadle machine at the age of 10, but mostly it was all straight seams, so that could have been it). Where I really learned to sew was when I got my first real full-time job after I graduated. I worked in a garment factory and learned all kinds of short-cuts that made sewing really easy. No patience needed. Two weeks of classes to learn how to run an industrial machine (damn, I wish I had one of those, they run about 10 times as fast as my Singer) and learn what needed to be done with the bundle of garment parts they brought you to work on. I did a lot of shoulders, sleeves, and side seams so I'm really really quick at making blouses/t-shirts. I also did a lot of crotch seams and side seams on pants, so those are easy too. It also probably helps that sewing talent runs on both sides of our family. My mother sews, her mother sewed, and my dad's mother worked in a garment factory too, and did a lot of sewing at home. I didn't learn much from any of them, but I must have inherited my sewing ability from them.

  3. On the LB thing, the catalog and the store are two different companies http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lane_Bryant
    I know that makes me feel a *little* better!

    Thanks for a great blog!

  4. morte - yeah, I know they are two different companies, and to me, that's stupid. I thought that was why they came out with the Woman Within catalog, because a lot of people were confusing the store with the catalog. Now we have the LB store, the LB catalog, and Woman Within catalog. I found out the hard way several years ago that the LB store and catalog weren't the same. I went into a LB store looking for some slacks that I liked in the LB catalog, but wanted to try them on before I bought them so I'd get the right size. The salesclerk was really snotty when she informed me that they most definitely were not affiliated with the LB catalog, like I was a moron for not knowing that, even though they share the same name. I just thought "fuck you bitch" and walked out with a resolution not to ever shop there again. Too bad they are the only place I can get the RightFit jeans with flares.


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