Shopping While Fat: It Must Get Better

May 21, 2012  |  

Over the weekend, I checked out Montrelle Green’s post on MN called Phat and Fabulous: Our Top 10 Plus Size Clothing Sites, and I got kind of excited…and a bit depressed at the same time. Excited to finally have some good leads on nice clothing for women over a certain size, but a bit depressed that it seems the only place I can find this clothing is online.

It’s been a while since I’ve been shopping. Since I started my new workout routine and sort of a healthy diet, which includes working out regularly, cutting out all the sodas, juices and other sugar-laden drinks and preparing 90 percent of my meals at home, I am proud to say that I have lost a couple of inches around my waist. Unfortunately, it also means that most of my clothing is a little too big for me. So to celebrate my slimming physique, I decided to splurge and buy a new outfit, or two – or five for the summer.

So this past Saturday, I got in my car and headed straight to the mall, ready and willing to burn through my paycheck and leave with a couple of bags of new gear. My first stop was at H&M. I was sifting through the racks, picking and choosing what items I wanted to try on when I noticed that at this particular H&M, none of the garments had sizes larger than a size 12. Now I know I haven’t been shopping in a while, but I do recall that the store used to have larger sizes. “Maybe this 12 compartmentalizes sizes where a “large” now means 12 and above?” At least that’s what I kept telling myself as I loaded my arms up with all the size 12 garments I could find. Can’t give up hope, right?

So I found a pair of hot pink linen capris and some seafoam green skinny jean pants that I really wanted to fit. Imagining all the color and style options I could have if any or both of these pants were graciously enough to be incorporated into my wardrobe, I kept pulling at the fabric, hoping that the two-percent spandex would be enough to maneuver the pants over this size 14 frame. However, when I got into the dressing room, I was in for a rude awakening. The seafoam green skinny jeans were a complete disaster. I couldn’t even get them up past my thighs. And the hot pink capris? Well, I got them up, but they were so tight that you could see every dimple in my a**, and I was wearing underwear.

Disappointed but not dejected. I left the H&M and headed to a few more stores. Perhaps this was just a fluke. We all know that the average size of women in the US ranges between 12-14, so maybe the other average size ladies got there before I did and bought out the store. It happens. But after the third store, I kept running into the same situation. Most of the department stores I went in had sizes extra small up to large, and while the large was size 12, it actually fit like a size 8 or smaller. Suddenly, I no longer felt actively welcome in the mall. So I took my paycheck and we went home.

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