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Old 02-04-2010, 01:53 AM   #1
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Default Clothing Q

Very random, and this says much too much about my childhood, but:

how do you know when your clothes are too big?

Please don't laugh I think I've had so many years of wearing very baggy stuff, or at the other extreme of wearing things that were more figure-hugging than, well, my own figure, that I don't know that happy medium. I have clothes that fit, but I've bought them with the help of friends and it'd be nice to be able to shop on my own and stuff

So when you're trying stuff on in a shop and looking in the mirror, what are the things that tell you that this top/skirt/etc fit you well?
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Old 02-04-2010, 02:09 AM   #2
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A few years ago I discovered fitted clothing with all the darts and seams in the right place. When you lifted your arms, the hem did not fly up, when you crossed your legs the cuff of the pants did not go to your knee. Clothing that fits correctly "moves" as you move. It drapes properly-- meaning when you are still, it will flow back to where it chould be. At 5. pm it looks like you just put it on in the morning. You don't need to pick at it, or bully it into place, it just goes there: You can wear it all day and it will have minimal wrinkles and will not bind or look bad. I do not think that anyone is so lucky that off-the-shelf clothing that is not tailored in some way actually "fits" properly. Also finding fabrics that drape properly. They are slightly heavy, sort of stiff-- microsued? Shantung silk? Certain Cotton blends? Over the years, I have discovered what works with me instead of against me.

Even at overweight, I look much better in fitted clothing. I look for "princess" darts in shirts and dresses. In fact, I like "structured" rather than "unstructured" for business wear. When hanging out around the house, it is baggy jersey and fleece, like everyone else.

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Old 02-04-2010, 02:11 AM   #3
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Definitely not a silly question since I'm having a lot of trouble finding the right fit these days too. After way too many years of wearing baggy clothes to 'hide' my weight (as if that really fooled anyone), now whenever I try on clothes are fitted properly they feel way too tight!!!! Since I'm still shrinking and my size is constantly changing getting the right fit is sort of impossible, but when I'm shopping I bring along a friend to help me out (because everything I pick out is too big).

My test for when pants are too big: I can easily put my hand down my pants (that sounds a lot creepier than I mean) and/or I can pull them off without unbuttoning. Shirts are a lot harder for me to judge (I still feel more comfortable in an XL even though I can squeeze into a medium and not look like a sausage)...so for shirts I judge by the fit in my bust (whether it's stretched or loose) and my waist (if I can grab more than a handful of fabric it's too big). If I'm home and unable to tell if an outfit fits well or not I take a picture with my cell phone since I can't really judge what I look like by looking in the mirror.
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Old 02-04-2010, 06:42 AM   #4
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You are on the right track with this, Salsa. Wearing clothes that follow the lines of the body more closely usually give a slimmer appearance. In general, draping is nice, but clinging or baggy is a no no... BUT... a baggy shirt can look great, if you pair it with some very sleek jeans, or a body hugging top works well with ease and a bit of fullness on the bottom. Also, some styles look good on some body types, but not on others....for instance... I can't do empire well because my "girls" are already a prominant feature, so contouring there, makes me look wider. On the other hand, a few well placed darts can accentuate my waist, and I look less ...shall I say...dumplingesque...You're tall and that helps...don't be afraid to show off your curves.
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Old 02-04-2010, 08:14 AM   #5
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ha, dumplingesque! hehehe that should SO be a word!

I think it all depends on your shape, Salsa. A baggy shirt and skinny jeans looks fabulous on some, but alas, on others they can look like a potato on toothpicks LOL don't be afraid to drag someone into the change room with you to give an honest opinion; someone elses eyes that you trust can be a real eye opener!
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Old 02-04-2010, 08:16 AM   #6
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I think it comes down to visually training/retraining your eyes. If you have a few items that others tell you fit well and are flattering, spend a while looking at yourself in those clothes. What do you see? Where is it tighter on your body, where is there some extra fabric or give to the item?

Wear these clothes when you go shopping for something new. When you go into the dressing room, take a minute to look at yourself in the mirror in your good clothes, before you try anything new on. Then when you try something new on, compare how you look in it to how you looked in your own stuff. Don't try on too many things at one, or you'll lose that vision in your head.

Don't be afraid to pull, move the clothes around a bit. If you pinch in some of the fabric, does what you are wearing look better on you? If so, it's too big.

Depending on where you are shopping, the salesperson may be helpful too. But don't be afraid to ask your friends to keep going shopping with you, most people enjoy spending other people's money and they won't feel like it's an imposition - I think they'll be thrilled to help you keep finding flattering clothes for your new figure. And when you do shop with them, ask them to point out exactly why they feel one garment works for you and is flattering, and something else isn't. See if they can tell you specific shapes to do and don't work on your body.

Just keep practicing and at some point, your eye will start to be able to see this too.
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Old 02-04-2010, 08:28 AM   #7
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SO not a dumb question!!! in fact, the only dumb questions are those not asked

i have a similar problem as you. finding things that fit me right is nearly impossible for me!!!
for shirts to fit right around my stomach fat (ya know, not showing off the rolls by wearing something tight on the tummy!) the top part over my breasts is way too big! (i'm only a C cup, but the shirts i used to buy that weren't so tight on my tummy were made for much larger busts!)

jeans/pants are another problem. my hips and thighs just don't match. in order to find jeans that i can get over my thighs, they're a little big on my hips.

i've been fighting with this problem ever since i can remember!! but i've finally found some clothing that fits better. i usually try to get wide leg jeans and pants so they fit better on my thighs, but aren't so baggy on the hips. and i try to get a lot of princess or baby doll type tops that fit nicely on the chest and are a little looser on the tummy.

finding the right clothes for your body is all trial and error. next time you go clothes shopping, pick out a few items you like, and then also pick out a few that you think would fit your body type better...then spend 20 mins in the changing room trying them all on. take pics if you'd like, so that you can get a better look at them, at home. see which items of clothing you tried on fit best and which types you just didnt like the way they looked at all. then just buy the items that you think fit your body the best.
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Old 02-04-2010, 08:28 AM   #8
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My rule of thumb for pants I learned on What Not to Wear: If they're pulling or doing that wrinkling thing in the back of the legs when you move, they're too tight. If you're constantly tugging the waist up, they're too big. The problem, of course, is your shape. I'm an hourglass, so when the thighs of my jeans fit perfectly, the waist is getting too loose. (Having second-hand jeans tailored is not in my budget -- pants that cost more than $10 are not in my budget right now! -- but it's the solution they suggest on the show.)

Like the others, I buy more fitted shirts, with princess seams or a waist that goes in. The definition in the waist helps all of us look smaller, no matter what our current size. It's more flattering and that's always a plus. We have worked really hard, so we deserve to show it off, you know?
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Old 02-04-2010, 02:04 PM   #9
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Do you know I've thought about asking the same question!

I was at a party and had on a new pair of pants that I felt good about. I thought they fit right and certainly fit closer to my body than what I had been wearing. My friend's friend is really outspoken and was standing behind me and shouted across the room in front of everyone, "Hey, C.C., you've lost a lot of weight! I can really tell with those baggy a$$ed pants!" (Notice how I didn't say she was my friend )

Clearly I don't know how to buy pants that fit right! I really thought they fit. I guess off the rack is not going to look right in pants for me until there is less of a stark contrast between my big old waist and my non-existent hips/rear. And it doesn't makes sense to me to alter anything since I'm still losing. So I make due with my baggy a$$ed pants...
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