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Right fit, wrong time

Hey, PastaQueen. Can you tell me what irony is?

Why yes, self. It’s when you have too much iron. It’s like reverse anemia.

Um, I don’t think that’s what it means.

Oh, really. Are you a doctor?

No, but I did take a creative writing class once. That’s not what “irony” means.

If you already know what it means, then why are you asking me?

Well, I thought it would be a cute way to set up a blog entry. I was just playing dumb.

Oh, okay then. Irony is “incongruity between the actual result of a sequence of events and the normal or expected result.” For example, say someone has worked two and half years so they would no longer have to shop at Lane Bryant. Then say that the very month that person can finally squeeze into the largest size not sold at Lane Bryant (size 12) and she runs around shopping all weekend looking for jeans is also the very same month Lane Bryant introduces a line of jeans that evidently fit everyone’s body shape. But only if they’re plus-sized. That would be irony.

Uno!The big LB introduced Right Fit jeans this month which come in three cuts – straight, curvy and extra curvy. They have a new sizing system which I suspect was brainstormed over a late night Uno card game. Once you get measured you’ll get a new size like Blue 4 or a Red 7 or Yellow 5. Or you can just grab a card out of the Uno deck and hope the matching pants fit. Since women’s sizing makes no sense anyway, I have no problem with LB making up their own system. The early reviews from The Pretty Pear are very positive. Now if only LB would make them in my size…

I did venture out of my apartment in search of the perfect jeans this weekend, and like my search for the perfect man it is still ongoing. I can now say that I have set foot in all of the following stores: The Gap, Banana Republic, Anne Taylor, Anne Taylor Loft, Marshalls, TJ Maxx and Macy’s. I’d already been to Macy’s and TJ Maxx before, but I was able to try on a lot more pants this time. And no one kicked me out of the store! They didn’t even make me spit out my gum. I was surprised to discover there actually were some size 14’s and 16’s at places like The Gap and Banana Republic, but only a couple. It’s nice that they were there, but if I were still a bit bigger it wouldn’t seem worth all the trouble to come out to the mall to try on the four items they had in my size. Also, I think the sales guy at The Gap might have been flirting with me. Either that or he really wanted to sell me a pair of low rise jeans. I can never tell with salespeople. Flirting might just be the way they make commission.

My shopping expedition also made me very class conscious. The mall that has The Gap and Banana Republic and Anne Taylor has as its anchor stores Fifth Avenue Saks and Parisian. I passed a valet parking stand on the way into the mall. Lots of people were wearing their sunglasses as they walked to the door, probably because the floors are so shiny they may temporarily blind you like a vision of the Madonna. While there were certainly a fair share of people in capris and tanks and sweats, there were also people who could have gone to a country club party after purchasing their uniquely shaped glassware at Crate and Barrel. Then I’d head off to places like Marshalls and TJ Maxx which sell off-price, discounted merchandise. I could not see my reflection in the floor and the dressing rooms felt more like a cattle call. The look in some of my fellow shoppers eyes was predatory, like if I were to get in the way between them and the 80% off Elliott Lucca handbag they’d slit my throat with their acrylic nails and leave me to stain the luggage section in blood. Which would then be reduced and marked “as is.” At both places I felt a little out of place.

After I was done shopping for clothes, I went to Target to get kitty litter and realized that the red store is the place I feel most class unconscious. The prices are affordable, but the décor is a little cleaner and prettier than places like Wal-Mart. Whenever I shop at Wal-Mart I feel like I’ve entered communist Russia. The check-out lines are sometimes as long as food ration queues. I feel like part of the down-trodden underclass, a 21st century peasant. I don’t mean to disrespect the existence of Wal-Mart or places like it, at least not on the basis of price and atmosphere. Their business practices and the way they treat employees are up for grabs. I know many people depend on their low prices simply to survive in life. I just know that I’m willing to pay a little extra for the nicer atmosphere at Target. Call me a snob, maybe I am.

Either way, it’s nice to have so many choices now and I look forward to completing further reconnaissance at similar stores. I’ll report back my findings hidden in microdots in the third “i” of my blog entries. Be on alert!

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20 Comments

Amy • July 23, 2007 at 9:48 am

whenever i’m at the gap i’m surrounded by 16’s, 18’s and 20’s. never a damn 12 to be found. you should their online clearance, v. cheap.

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deanna • July 23, 2007 at 10:32 am

this entry is so on-point, i couldn’t agree with you more in regard to the up-scale malls, walmart and target! good luck on the search for the perfect jeans, i am told that using this site’s “jeanfinder” is a pretty good tool for finding a great pair of jeans – maybe it will help :

http://www.levisstore.com/home/index.jsp

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barbara • July 23, 2007 at 10:57 am

There’s nothing quite like the experience of walking through New York City’s garment district on any given weekday morning and seeing huge racks of clothes being pushed up and down the street (to where? I have no clue) – It really makes me see that all this stuff, no matter where it’s sold and how it’s priced and packaged and marketed, is PRODUCT, and it all comes from the same big MAW. My favorite image is seeing racks of really expensive fur coats being lugged along the streets just the same Way that a rack full of, say, plus-size polyester tops headed for Lane Bryant is. It’s all PRODUCT. STUFF. The rest is artifice.

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kar_kar • July 23, 2007 at 11:34 am

LOL! Love your Wal-Mart comments! I’m a lurker but had to say something, that was just too funny.

I love your blog btw…congratulations on all of your hard work paying off, you look fabulous!

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Jenny • July 23, 2007 at 1:10 pm

The Walmart comment made me spit my coffee out. I’m STILL looking for the perfect pair of jeans…. it’s been 2 years. I think I’m waiting for STRETCH fabric to go away.

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wendy • July 23, 2007 at 1:14 pm

lucky brand jeans, though not cheap, seem to fit people I know pretty well – they come in a bunch of different styles, wear and wash well…

something about the lighting or the crowds in walmart gives me a headache.

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mrs darling • July 23, 2007 at 1:26 pm

I havent worn jeans in five years because I cant find a good fit. Now I think I will try Lane bryant and see if maybe I can finally wear jeans again.

You know I dont mean to knock the good people of Walmart but I have to say that they do seem to attract some of the worst people. Having said that I must admit I do still shop there sometimes, but it always feels so dirty to me. Somethings just a little off about it. When my mother came home from Walmart with a cockroach in her shopping bag I decided Walmart and I are parting ways….that is until they have a sale too good for me to pass up.

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Lindsey • July 23, 2007 at 4:08 pm

The search for the perfect jean–much like it’s elusive cousin, the swimsuit. For what it’s worth, on the more affordable side, I’ve liked both Gap and Old Navy jeans (not shocking as with Banana Republic, they’re owned by the same parent company). They tend to have similar sizing variety as the LB versions you mentioned. Though, like another commenter pointed out, finding a 10 or 12 can be absolutely impossible sometimes. If you figure out the right fit, you can ask the folks with headsets on and they oftentimes have the size in the back somewhere. The only difference I noticed was that the Gap jeans appear to be made a little more sturdily with better quality materials so they look like they’d last longer (I imagine the same would be even more true for those from Banana Republic).

I haven’t really ventured into the uber expensive jeans department yet as I’m still waiting to lose more weight until I even think about dropping $100+ on some jeans, but in the in-between category, I’ve found some Calvin Kleins at Macy’s that were pretty good (only $70 or so). I found CK had quite a variety of cuts as well, it was just a lot harder to differentiate those nuances, especially with the way Macy’s had it set up.

Also, sometimes depending on the cut, you may have to go up a size or two. I’ve had some 10s that were great but in a different brand, I’d buy 14s. The temptation to buy the 10s even though the cut isn’t as flattering is so strong…but be strong, go with the cut and size that looks best on you regardless of the objective number. After all, no one is going to see the size, but they’ll definitely notice if your butt looks better/worse in a certain pair.

Sidenote: I actually got catcalled this weekend after leaving a bar by some disembodied voice in an apartment building where I was told to “go on ahead and walk that a** off…mmmm….mmmm”. Being a typical white chick, this is not a comment I get often. After looking around the rest of the block for the obvious intended target, I came to the shocking realizatio that the guy was actually catcalling me. I can’t say that I completely understand the comment, but I’m pretty sure it was meant to be complimentary.

So go ahead and get the pair that looks best on you regardless of the size and go ahead, PastaQueen, and walk your own a** off.

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Fredericka • July 23, 2007 at 6:02 pm

After years of frustration at Gap, Banana Republic, LL Bean, and many points in-between, I found my denim soul-mates in the men’s section at Abercrombie and Fitch. I am not male, nor am I an A and F fan, but their men’s jeans fit me just right…that’s the first time I’ve found jeans that fit me well in ten years or more.

I guess you just never know where you’ll find the right ones (just like finding the right man, by the way)!

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MizAngie • July 23, 2007 at 10:46 pm

You’re always dead-on with your comments and observations! Love it!!!! I’ve noticed that at Target people push the buggies to the little things in the parking lot designed to hold them so they don’t roll into the cars. At WalMart they’re left to roll to their destinations by themselves. I guess it matters less to people who drive dented pickup trucks to WalMart that a buggy might roll into them, where the nicer vehicles at Target don’t want to have the buggy bang into their expensive paint jobs.

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Mary Jean • July 23, 2007 at 11:26 pm

Hi, Pasta Queen! Have I got a pair of jeans for you! I am short and fat, my friend is tall and thin and we both wear these jeans comfortably!! I just wear the women’s size and she wears the misses.

http://fashionbug.charmingshoppes.com/pagebuilder/fashion_bug_product_page?nav=Misses&item=7916323&pagesize=3

A lot of people don’t like fashionbug, but I do. And, these jeans rock!!

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Scarlet • July 24, 2007 at 12:15 am

try american eagle for jeans. just bought the “boyfriend.” gives me a great ass. buy em a little tight-they stretch quite a bit.

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Poppy • July 25, 2007 at 1:52 pm

Hey – I love the jeans at Chico’s, which is surprising considering that I hate most of their other clothes and absolutley hate their fugly accessories. But the jeans are great and they cone in a number of styles.

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Toby • July 27, 2007 at 1:32 pm

Check out Lord & Taylor for jeans. They have a great selection! Anyone else have any luck there with jeans? They can be so hard to shop for!

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K • July 27, 2007 at 5:39 pm

Yeah, just like Fredericka, I go for the boys’ jeans these days despite being extremely female-shaped. My jeans come off the GAP sale rack, though.

See, the thing is that there can’t be many men who actually wear the size I do (36 waist – actually fits my hips – and 30 leg). So since GAP make this size, there are usually plenty on sale… and they’re dead cheap.

They generally fit fine. I have had the odd pair I really need a belt with, but I can’t wear low-rise at all, so boys’ jeans seem to be my only option.

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Chubby Mommy • July 29, 2007 at 4:31 pm

Love the comment about LB’s sizing being born over a late-night UNO game. I just checked out their sizing, thinking maybe I’d find something that actually fit. But all I found was a headache, and yet another pair of jeans I won’t be trying on.

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Laurie • July 30, 2007 at 12:15 pm

Pasta Queen–try Eddie Bauer. I lost 3-4 sizes a couple years ago and STILL hated shopping for pants. EB has different cuts for different figures. Because I’m old enough to be your mom, I didn’t feel real comfy in those waaaaay below the belly button pants … but I also didn’t want old lady “up to your armpits” waistbands, either. Eddie Bauer has a perfect fit for me (always be a bit hippy)–Mercer. Try them out.

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Annie • August 2, 2007 at 8:09 am

Woman you are hot so I am sure he was flirting. I never really thought about those stores in the way you brought up but I can see it now that you did. I like Target much better too…I have to drive 30 minutes to get to one at the moment but they are building a brand new one in my town and I can’t wait till it opens.

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Nells • August 8, 2007 at 4:33 pm

You should still try the Lane Bryant Jeans!! you will probably fit into the 0’s which let me tell you wearing a size 5 for the first time in my life is pretty cool. The reason for the UNO sizing is that with the different fits(yellow, red, blue) the sizing doesn’t match up. Honestly they do make the but look great!! Try a pair!!

Nells, one of the reasons I am losing weight is so I would never, EVER, have to shop at Lane Bryant again. I even made a new year’s resolution about it. I ain’t going back now, size 0’s or not. I wouldn’t go back if they gave them to me for free! – PQ

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SteveD • May 1, 2008 at 9:37 am

Uno remark is Brillant! Your writing style is funny and nice read. Catherine’s also has Right Fit Jeans (straight leg).

They do fit well (Size 5 Yellow). Front pockets a little shallow. I got 2 pair and they stay up without having to tug em up and tighten the belt thru the day.

Oh well if there Womens’s. Wife like them too.

SteveD

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Comments are now closed on all PastaQueen entries. The blog is an archive only so I don't have to deal with spammers. For fresh discussions please visit my new blog JenFul.

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Jennette Fulda tells stories to the Internet about her life as a smartass, writer, weight-loss inspiration, chronic headache sufferer, and overall nice person (who is silently judging you). She does this at JenFul now, but you can still have fun perusing her past here.

Disclaimer: I am not responsible for keyboards ruined by coffee spit-takes or forehead wrinkles caused by deep thought.

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