Clothing sizes – This blew my mind!

by Christine on December 13th, 2011

filed under Christine's Life Updates, General Information

I’ve had something bother me all week.

We do trivia at a local bar every week. And one of the trivia questions last week was something to the effect of, “A US Size 10 in women’s clothing equates to how big of a waist, in inches?”

I thought, man, that’s an easy question! I had JUST measured my waist the night before! I have a measuring tape hanging on my bathroom door, which I used once a week during my journey to skinny. It had been a while since I measured, so I busted that baby out.

  • I have a 28 inch waist.
  • I’m 5’2. So I’m a petite.
  • I wear a size 4 pant comfortably. (Sometimes a size 2, depending on the brand.)

(sidenote: That’s approx. 2 inches more than reaching my “low/goal weight” a year ago, when I measured in at 26.5 inches. Same weight, bigger waist = clear indication that I’m not exercising.)

So keeping that in mind, and the fact that women’s clothing sizes go up every 2 sizes, I figured that a Size 10 would be something like a 34 or 36 inch waist, right? I guessed 36 inches.

Got the answer wrong.

WRONG! 

Guess how big of a waist is a US Size 10? 28 inches!!

But wait! That’s what size MY waist is, and I wear a Size 4!!

According to the charts, a Size 4 should have about a 24 inch waist.  24 inches? Seriously? Who is that teeny? (According to some reports, Megan Fox and Kelly Ripa…)

So either this information is totally F-ed up, or my body is totally out of wack. I don’t know. How does that logic work on you ladies?

Here’s some stats to back up the trivia leader’s answer.

https://www.wmsclothing.com/sizing.html

http://www.rodcollins.com/wordpress/what-dress-size-or-waist-size-am-i-really

http://www.orvis.com/intro.aspx?subject=850#women_size

http://www.overstock.com/sizing.html

 

That’s F-ed up. No wonder women go insane when they shop for clothes. The shit doesn’t make a single bit of sense!

Just for some other fun celebrity info….Marilyn Monroe had a 22 inch waist, Audrey Hepburn had a 20 inch waist, Princess Di had a 27 inch waist at the highest, Kate Winslet has a 29 inch waist…  This is a fun website to check out….

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Trying on my wedding dress

by Christine on December 22nd, 2010

filed under Christine's Life Updates

One of the things I have been looking forward to is trying on my wedding dress to see how it feels on a much-thinner body.

Buying a wedding dress was an absolutely horrible experience for me. I went to every single wedding dress shop in the entire Upstate New York area and never found a dress that looked okay on me. Part of the problem is that most of the try-on dresses are only in a Size 6, and I was a Size 18 at the time, which means that the dresses wouldn’t even get past my boobs or hips. It was impossible to see if the dress would work for me or not.  David’s Bridal had dresses on the rack in a Size 18, but they all looked hideous on me. I ended up buying an okay dress at a consignment shop (for $150), but every time  I took self-pictures of me in the dress, all I saw was how fat I was. I bought a total of three wedding dresses (all very cheap, don’t worry), and hated every single one of them. I reached the point where I was more than willing to spend THOUSANDS of dollars on a dress, just so long as I loved it and loved how I felt in it. I started going to really expensive wedding dress stores, but since I couldn’t even get the dresses over my head, it was impossible to see if the dress was nice on my body or not.

It didn’t help that I did all my wedding dress shopping alone. Every single one of those 10,000 stores I went to, I went to alone. I didn’t have anyone there with me to hold my hand, be a voice of reason, to tell me that “well, that wedding dress might work for you.” I was all alone, and I think that compounded the sadness of the wedding dress shopping experience.

In short, wedding dress shopping was an utterly miserable experience. I cried more in those few months than I have in my whole life. I put off the wedding for as long as I could. I thought about canceling our wedding plans. I talked to my soon-to-be husband about the idea of eloping in Vegas so we could wear Jeans and T-Shirts, anything to prevent the horrible wedding dress thing from happening.

We got married on a cruise ship, so it was a very low-key ceremony. I eventually found a dress that I thought looked tolerably okay on me. It was a prom dress from JC Penny ($60). When I see photos of our wedding, all I can remember is that horrible wedding dress experience, and how terribly unhappy I was with my body.

There are two things I couldn’t wait to do when I lost all this weight. The first thing was to try on that Size 18 JC Penny dress again and see how it looks on me now!

The second thing is…for our 10th wedding anniversary, I want to renew our vows, but I want to buy a real wedding dress to wear, and I want to feel pretty and sexy in it!

We got married less than 3 years ago, just a few months before my gastric banding surgery. 102 pounds later…what a difference it has made! Here are some pictures from yesterday!

(That picture above is me trying to bunch the dress up so it seems to fit a little better!)

Man, that felt REALLY good. I think I finally won the war with the wedding dress. Sure, a bit belated, but I finally did it. Take that, evil wedding dress!

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Magic numbers!

by Christine on May 27th, 2010

filed under Christine's Life Updates, Diet, Food, Nutrition, General Information

Pencil Skirt from Ann TaylorYesterday after work I went to Ann Taylor loft (a clothing store) to do some quick shopping. I haven’t been to Ann Taylor in years….many years! I was too fat to fit into the clothes. Most clothing stores only carry clothes from size 0-14, and at my highest I was in a size 22/24!  Ann Taylor clothes are good quality and are work-appropriate (and high-priced). I thought, “What the hell, I haven’t been there in a while! Let me give it a shot.”

I found an adorable pencil skirt on the sale rack, so I brought it and a pretty blouse into the dressing room. Now, a pencil skirt is not a style I would normally wear. After all, skinny girls wear pencil skirts. Big girls with thunder thighs like me wear A-shaped skirts. This choice was definitely out of my element. I was tempting the Fates and playing with Fire. I held my breath trepidatiously and grabbed a Size 8 skirt and a Petite Medium shirt.

First I tried on the shirt. I giggled like a drunken schoolgirl! It was SO BIG — it was like a tent on me!  A medium!  The poor girl in the fitting room next to mine must have thought I was a nutcase.  Then I tried on the size 8 skirt.  It fit, but it was a little too big!  I couldn’t believe it! I rushed out of the dressing room, tags flying out, my skirt half-unzipped, all bug-eyed and drooling on myself. A size 8 too big? Surely that cannot be true! I ran to the rack and…YES! There was a size 6!! I rushed back to the fitting room to try it on.

IT FIT!! THE SIZE SIX FIT ME!!!  I shrieked out loud and even started to cry! The girl in the stall next door said, “Yikes, are you okay?” and I stammered out something unintelligible in reply and spun around-and-around in front of the mirror, looking at my body. I felt like I was looking at a stranger.

I’ve never been a size six in my whole life. Not since…5th grade? I’m not even sure when. I should have taken a photo of the label or something, just for the fun of it.

I ended up putting both skirts back. The six didn’t fit perfectly well, and the eight would have been okay if my body was to stay this size, except I would have quickly grown out of it in a few weeks.  At $70 (on sale) it would have been a waste of money. I did end up buying the blouse, but in a Petite Small! ($35 on sale! Yikes!)

This experience brings up two issues to me: First, I absolutely hate that my brain allows the number on a piece of clothing define who I am, what I look like, and how I feel about myself. I realize this is incredibly superficial, and my elation goes against everything I believe inside. I feel like a freaking hypocrite, allowing a piece of clothing to determine if I have a good day or bad day.  I suppose it’s okay this time, because I was having a good day, but what would happen if I tried on a size 10 and it fit snugly? Would I let that ruin my day? (probably!) It’s absolutely ridiculous. However, at the same time, the numbers on a piece of clothing are one of numerous methods to evaluate your progress losing weight.  Sure, there’s the number on the scale (and we all know how ridiculous it is to allow a silly number on a scale to have such control over our mental health), body measurements, body fat % numbers, BMI numbers, metabolic numbers, and a thousand other ways.   But let’s face it, we girls are taught at a young age that clothing sizes are the ultimate determiner of whether we are fat, skinny, have a good day, have a bad day, or need to be shot and buried altogether.

Yesterday was a victory for me, in a sense, but it was also a bittersweet reminder that I still need to do some mental work as I continue to lose weight. When I set out to lose weight, my goal was NOT, “I want to be a size six or a size four” or anything like that. My goal was, “I want to be happy. I want to be confident. I want to feel beautiful. I want to prove to myself that I can achieve anything I set my mind to.”  If I’m happy, confident, and successful at a size 10 or a size 12, then shouldn’t that be good enough?  Clothing numbers have nothing to do with it.

Hurry up and evolve, Miss Brain.  You’ve got some catching up to do.

The second thing this experience brought up to me was the idea of spending money on myself, on clothing.  I have spent hundreds, no thousands of dollars on clothing in the past. It happens when you go up 14 clothing sizes and need to buy a whole new wardrobe in each size (a work-appropriate wardrobe, a “casual” wardrobe, a “working out” wardrobe, a “nice-occasion” wardrobe.) Consequently, I shop the sale racks ONLY, and I can’t remember the time that I spent more than $20 or $30 on a single item of clothing for myself.  Part of that is frugality: Constantly buying new clothes is expensive.  But part of that is a self-worth issue too: I am fat and ugly, so I don’t deserve nice clothes.  I would rather have a small number of nice, quality, expensive clothes in my closet than 100 items of $4 crappy clothes.  To me, when I put on something that’s quality-made, it makes me feel important, like “I deserve to wear this nice item of clothing.”  I have few items that I could qualify like that, and perhaps I need to change that. (Eventually…when I reach a “final clothing size.”)

So what’s your opinion of clothing sizes and using them as a way to evaluate yourself, your progress, your happy-level? What is your opinion of spending money on expensive clothes?

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