Dress Shopping #1

17Jun08

I was in my hometown of Victoria, BC this weekend to visit my parents for Father’s Day, and my mum took me out to begin looking at dresses. It was certainly educational, but I’m also a little disheartened.

The education came from being able to see and touch dresses, rather than just looking at pretty pictures online. I’m starting to get a sense of what I might like, between folding pages in magazines and looking at dresses in the stores, but the stores gave me something even more important – a sense of what I don’t like! Certain fabrics and shapes, necklines and colours just don’t seem like “me”, and I think that’s as important to learn as anything else. One store had mostly dresses with heavy beading, which didn’t grab me visually. The other had much more variety, and I tried on a couple of dresses there to get a sense of how they feel on my body. This is where the trouble began…

I’m a curvy girl – size 16, 38G, at 5’8 and about 200lbs. Most of the samples at both stores were size 8 or 10, which is a street size 6 or 8. This meant that not only would they not close on me (no big deal), many of them wouldn’t even go over my hips or breasts. The plus-size samples available were few and far between, and seemed like “big girl dresses”, rather than larger sizes of other dresses.

Now, I’m not a particularly big girl, so if I can’t even fit into samples, what do women larger than me do? I know stores have space constraints, but wouldn’t it behoove them to have at least some dresses with two samples – an 8 and an 18 or something like that? How should I approach dress shopping when I am actually doing more than just looking?

We did go talk to a seamstress my mum knows, and she had excellent advice about custom-made dresses, so I know that that is an option. Most of the dresses I’ve bookmarked online or in magazines come in a wide range of sizes, but every body is different, and I don’t want to invest in something I haven’t at least tried on in a smaller/larger size!

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3 Responses to “Dress Shopping #1”

  1. Your site offers a lot of unique insights and wisdom. I haven’t really thought about it like that. Please keep updating your site. I will be stopping over every time you do .


  1. 1 Dress Shopping #2(ish) « Inspirations and Ideas
  2. 2 Dress Shopping #3: Third Time’s the Charm « Inspirations and Ideas

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