This weekend I am going to visit my mother and among the many other things we have planned, we are going fabric shopping. I am a novice sewer. I started with skirts, moved up to aprons, and now I have my eye on pants. Why not just buy these things, you might ask. Well, as far as skirts and aprons go, you can get way better fabric with cooler patterns when you are making your own stuff than you ever could if you were buying off the rack. As far as pants go....
Any woman can tell you that shopping for pants is like descending to the 7th circle of hell. Actually it's more like the 8th circle of hell, because by the time you've tried on five pairs of pants and none of them fit, you feel like all clothing makers are frauds and pants sizes are lies and what is the problem? I recently tried on five pairs of pants all of them from the same manufacturer and found an 18 to be too big, a 26 to be too small, and a 20 to fit right in the waist and be so big in the legs that I looked like I was wearing a diaper and you want to talk about CRANKY? THAT will make you cranky. It makes no sense. (The irony here is that they were called Right Fit pants.) If I shop in one store, I'm an entirely different size than if I shop in another store.
People chalk this up to vanity sizing. I disagree. Sure, that's an aspect of it (and a ridiculous one. Hey, if we didn't put so much emphasis on being a size two, you wouldn't have to vanity size the clothes. People be a size 12 or 14 without hating themselves. Just a thought.), but it's definitely not the be all end all. Clothing sizes are so inconsistent. Ok. You want to vanity size me? FINE! Just be consistent. Manufacturers should be held to some kind of standard size chart.
And it's not just pants, although pants are the worst. It's underwear and shirts and shoes and it's all RIDICULOUS. I now wear, in shoes, anywhere from a size 8.5 to a size 10! I understand fluctuating a half size, even a full size up. I could accept that. But where does it end? How does it go from telling the person in the shoe store "can you bring me an 8" to "bring me one of each, I have no idea what size I wear." We're making ourselves crazy. We're making people in the service industry crazy. Every time you go to buy a piece of clothing, you have to try it on, probably in three different sizes going in both directions until you find one that works. Then they have to fold and replace everything you don't buy, and sometimes I don't buy anything because I get so tired of trying on clothes that I give up. Even men's sizes don't run true anymore, and those are generally based on measurements! HOW DOES THAT MAKE SENSE?
All I ask for is pants that fit, and if I have, I'll make them myself. And talk about cranky? Wait til you find out how I feel about pattern instructions.