Today’s post is about…clothes!!

I had a shocking and weird experience in a clothing store last week. I was checking out some jeans – I have really never had any “nice” jeans – just big, floppy “casual fit” Levi’s that sort of hung on me. The saleswoman came over and asked if she could help.  I said I probably needed a size 12.

I have worn pretty much a size 14 for the past 5-ish years, and before that, 12.  I have really never worn a size 10 in my adult memory, and NEVER anything in single digits.

She looked at me skeptically and said, “No way are you 12.” I said, “Yes way.” So she gave me a 12 and a 10. I went into the dressing room. The 12 was indeed, way big. The 10 fit pretty well. I was happy. I came out of the room. She appraised me and said, “You need an 8.” I started laughing hysterically. I said no. She shoved an 8 into my hands and thrust me back into the dressing room.  And… THEY FIT.

I didn’t buy them because I was in too much of a state of shock, and I also didn’t like how high the waist felt. They came up wayyy over my navel, which felt weird. So I didn’t get them. But I spent the rest of the day muttering to myself in disbelief, “I wear a size 8?!?!”

But I have remained dubious. My theory (not even a theory, it’s fact) is that clothing sizes have gone down, down, while remaining the same size.

And last night I proved it. I went on a romp through my closet, trying on everything I could. The good and crazy/happy news is that I could not find a SINGLE PIECE of clothing that doesn’t fit me because it’s too small. (several too big now) That was trippy. I mean really hard to even believe.

But I noticed that the OLDER that a piece of clothing was, the larger the size.

Finally, I found an old pair of shorts, maybe 15 years old. Tried them on. They fit me sort of snugly, but fit OK. JUST LIKE THE SIZE 8 JEANS in the store. I looked at the tag on the shorts. SIZE 14. I swear!!!!!!!

Another thing. I got married in a size 12 wedding dress. This was in 1988, 21 years ago. And guess what? I weighed 19 pounds LESS than I do now. There is no way that I could squeeze into that dress today. A size 12.

So, sizes have been shrinking while clothes stay the same. I find this incredibly annoying but of course I understand the marketing concept behind it. Women will be ecstatic to THINK they wear a size 8 when they are actually a 14 from 1988!! Ugh.

I really think they should abolish these arbitrary stupid sizes and just make everything the true number that it is, based on inches. Size 30. Size 35. Whatever.

If the numbers had stayed true to 1988, I would have probably been up to a size 20 or something, which would have alarmed me a lot earlier. But I think I felt like 14 was “bad, but not TOO bad” – ie I could still shop in “regular” instead of “plus sized” stores.

The whole thing is just weird. So while I am mildly excited to be fitting into those size 8 jeans, part of me knows it’s just bogus.

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