I used to love shopping. It was a big pastime for my family, and many of my best memories as a kid are centered on the shopping mall.
But even when I loved shopping for clothes, there was always that really terrible moment in the dressing room that would stick with me for months after the incident. That moment when, after trying on many cute-looking things on the rack, none of them looked good on my body. None.
If I couldn’t find clothes that looked good, that fit my body appropriately, I knew what the problem was immediately. It was me.
If only I lost a little weight, if only my belly shrunk some, THEN I would be a perfect size whatever and everything I ever tried on would look awesome and I could find so much great clothing.
It’s really hard to believe that I actually thought this was true until very recently. It took 27 years for me to realize that actually, what might be easier and more realistic would be to change the clothes, rather than my body.
Right. Clothes are easier to tailor than bodies.
But even though I know that this is true, that message almost always creeps in when I go shopping (which is rare these days). Somehow, I’ll be in that dressing room, trying on another pair of pants that are too tight at the waist, or a shirt that doesn’t fit, and I’ll say to myself: you really just need to lose some weight, and the next size down will fit perfectly.
These days because I wear mostly men’s clothing, the assignments are even more absurd: if only my feet could grow one more size. If only I was a few inches taller. Once again, I always turn to changing myself before I think about changing the clothes.
My friend Emily G. has been a tailoring evangelist for a while. I’ve tried to listen to her, I swear. I’ve always felt like I didn’t want to spend extra money on getting clothing fixed after I bought it. I wanted to buy things that fit right the first time.
But still, instead of just investing in making clothing fit me right, I spend months trying to change a body that just doesn’t want to be a perfect size whatever. I’d probably be better off spending the extra money on tailoring, and saving myself the grief. No matter what I do, my feet aren’t going to get any bigger, and my body probably won’t get smaller either. And the truth is, even if I do lose weight, the clothing probably still won’t fit me perfectly–because it wasn’t designed for me. It was designed for some model, based on some math about average sizing, that has no relationship to my body.
Emily posted this article yesterday on facebook. It points out the same thing I’ve come to realize here, but with an added dose of information. Even celebrities, beautiful people with beautiful bodies–get their clothes tailored to fit them.