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Old 03-05-2008, 04:59 PM   #1
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Default Have sizes changed?

Back in the late 80's, I was 5'6 and weighed 140-145 pounds. I always wore a size 10 jeans. On very rare occasion I could fit into an 8.

It seems to me that what used to be a size 10 is now like, a size 8. All the sizes seem to have gogtten bigger!I just can't see how anyone who is 170-180 pounds can wear size 10 jeans. Am I nuts? Anyone else notice this? When did sizes change?
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Old 03-05-2008, 05:02 PM   #2
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Yes they changed a few years back. I think if you do a search on vanity sizing, you might find more info about it.

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Old 03-05-2008, 05:04 PM   #3
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I think it depends on the brand. I'm 207 and wear a size 13/14 (and my pants are getting too big). Of course, I wear a 13 in juniors, sometimes in womens a 14 is WAY too big and sometimes it's WAY too small. My sister wears a size 8/10 and always has... I really don't know.
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Old 03-05-2008, 05:18 PM   #4
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I definately notice that clothing sizes are way off today... When I try on my mom or grandma's clothes from when they were my age I can't squeeze into a 12 at all... but that is the size I currently wear. It also seems that some brands just make their clothes whatever size they want b/c I can wear from a 10 to a 14 depending on the brand...
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Old 03-05-2008, 05:21 PM   #5
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I've heard that like every 5 years or something they change the dimensions for jeans and in general clothing.
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Old 03-05-2008, 05:22 PM   #6
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Also, don't forget that people as a WHOLE are getting bigger! People are a ton taller these days--- I mean, my cousins who are in their early teens (including a girl) are all over 5'11" tall!!!!

The taller we are, the wider we are so that our stature can handle the extra height...

Speaking of which--- I remember last summer there was an article in our paper about how a local Theodore Roosevelt Historical Society was putting on a fashion show of Wedding Dresses worn around that time in history. WEDDING dresses. And they said the only females who could model them were 10 year old girls. Amazing, huh???

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Old 03-05-2008, 05:42 PM   #7
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According to some studies, Americans don't seem to be getting any taller anymore.

Vanity sizing definitely exists. Around 10 years ago, I weighed 140 lbs for around a year. I kept most of my size 10 clothes and now I weigh 127 lbs. A gorgeous pair of wool, lined size 10 pants from Ann Taylor circa 1995 fits almost perfectly. I also have a lovely size 10 black silk dress from the same timeframe which fits perfectly.

I now wear a size 6 (sometimes a FOUR) at Ann Taylor (I find them one of the most egregious in the vanity-sizing department). I have to admit, it's effective, I bought the first pair of size 4 pants that ever fit.
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Old 03-05-2008, 05:45 PM   #8
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sizes changed in the last 4 or 5 years at the stores I shop at in Canada... I went from being a clothing crazed teen.. to a broke university student.. and stayed in denial so much longer because the number 'stayed the same' for the few times I shopped through my undergrad. nah uh!

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Old 03-05-2008, 05:50 PM   #9
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I'm 159, 5'7" and I'm currently wearing 13s. They're even a little snug (I HATE muffin top with a burning passion--so something that one person might not notice on me as muffin top, I see and I hate it). My goal's about 135--145, depending on how I look/feel at those weights--I'm not sure if I'll ever make it below a 9/10. We'll see. I guess it depends on how your body's shaped, your body fat % vs your muscle mass %...all that jazz.
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Old 03-05-2008, 07:17 PM   #10
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I kept a dress I loved from the 70s. It was a size 10. The measurements I had then are now a size 0 or 2. Which is really really depressing cause that makes the 20s I'm wearing now, what, about ten times worse? Gotta keep trying though
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Old 03-05-2008, 07:51 PM   #11
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Vanity sizing proliferates partially because if you had an item in size 8 and an item in size 12 and they both fit, which would you buy? Often women are more likely to buy the smaller size.

Although it would be nice if sizing would be consistent. I have size 16 pants that are baggy on me. I have some size 14s that fit me but I needed to find some clothes a size down so I went shopping this weekend. Many 14s fit me perfectly, some were a bit snug, size 12 was way snug. I then tried on a size 16 and they were as snug as the size 12s.
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Old 03-05-2008, 09:24 PM   #12
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I recently read an excerpt of the first chapter of Meg Cabot's novel, "Size 12 is Not Fat." I plan to read the whole thing as time permits, but the excerpt is a hysterical take on vanity sizing. Luckily, it's up on her website. It's pretty short, and definitely worth the read. Enjoy



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Old 03-05-2008, 09:43 PM   #13
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I recently read an article online about the history of standardize sizing, and apparently, except for a couple of decades, it's pretty much been a myth. And attempts to standardize sizing is a bit of a failed experiment. It was first envisioned in the late 30's, implemented in the 40's and pretty much abandoned by the 80's.

Before the computer age, pretty much every clothing manufacturer determined their own sizing, and there was no consistency whatsoever (kind of like today). Then with the advent of computers, a big study was done to determine the "average" size of women to design and mandate a standard - with the size of 10 being assigned to the completely average woman. From the start it was assumed that every few years the standards would be revised (thus a 10 would always reflect the average woman, even if the average changed). The problem of course is that while you can average measurements, women are not all going to fit neatly into each size category, no matter how you determine and divide them. Many women will be one size in the bust and one size in the hips, so finding clothing that fits "perfectly" is still going to vary by size, cut, style and manufacturer.

As a result, the attempt to force manufacturer's to adhere to standard sizing was pretty much abandoned (except in sewing patterns, where sizing standards are still mandated).
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Old 03-06-2008, 02:43 AM   #14
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Vanity sizing proliferates partially because if you had an item in size 8 and an item in size 12 and they both fit, which would you buy? Often women are more likely to buy the smaller size.
Totally. This really, really annoys me because I'd like to think women are smarter than that, but I can't exactly claim to be immune. I like to wear a UK 8, and if I need the 10 I get sad, even though I have 8s that are manifestly bigger than some 10s! And my mum has some 10s from when she was in her twenties and lemme tell you - I can *just about* squeeze into them...if I don't breathe too much!
Another thing shops do is put 'thin' mirrors in changing rooms. So you think you look better in their clothes than you really do, and buy them. I'm a sucker for that one, too
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Old 03-06-2008, 04:55 AM   #15
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Sizing has changed but it is also about your exercise program.
In sept. at about 165 lbs I wore a size 14, now after all these months of weight lifting I still weigh between 165 and 170 and I wear a size 10 of the same brand pants.
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