Sizing up clothing sizes

The New York Times reports the ghastly news that petites sections are disappearing from high-end department stores, and some short, older, mostly wealthy (these stores are expensive) women are upset.
While stores may appear to be “long obsessed with that Seventh Avenue archetype, the tall, thin, leggy lady,” I can say definitively, as a slender woman who’s 6’2″, they don’t actually make clothes to fit us, either. My inseam is 36 inches. which means the average pair of pants is between six and four inches too short for me. Sleeve length is an even bigger issue– I’ve gotten used to bare wrists.
I certainly have nothing against shorter women, but I can’t help but get pissed off when I read articles like this. Women who are shorter than 5’3″ have more clothing options than many of us on other ends of the spectrum. You can always have clothes taken in and shortened, but you can’t magically extend sleeves and pant legs (or expand waistlines or bustlines, for that matter). So some while short women are whining about not being able to find whole sections of clothing tailored to fit them, I have NEVER seen a section of a store devoted to attire for the long-limbed.
But I’ll also say that I’ve never met any woman who doesn’t complain about finding clothes to fit her body. The traditional sizing system is seriously flawed. It doesn’t work for women of a variety of shapes. Stores that have switched to more specific sizing– a variety of cuts, lengths, widths, etc.– have been met with rave reviews.
This is why I learned to sew. I’m much happier for it.

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