Sunday, November 14, 2010

Dressing Rooms, No Spanx, and Size 12s...Oh My!

I did something super scary on Halloween.

Frightening, really.

I stood in my underwear in a dressing room.

Yup. I went there. Clothes shopping, to be exact.

I hadn't lost those damn 20 pounds and yet, I. went. clothes shopping.

What the hell was I thinking??

Well, I'll tell you what I wasn't thinking. I wasn't thinking my usual, "I don't deserve to have cute clothes because I'm not the size I used to be."

And I wasn't thinking, "I'm not going to look good no matter what I wear until I've lost 20 pounds because looking good is directly related to what size I am."

Ok, that last one I was thinking a little bit.  It's hard not to when you look in the mirror and see stomach flab that resembles a kangaroo pouch.  But that's what spanx are for, right?

The only problem was, I wasn't wearing spanx when I went clothes shopping on Halloween. And that's actually lesson number one I learned that day.

10 Tips to feel good about yourself when fashion shopping

But, I'm getting ahead of myself.  I wanted to start this post by saying I've decided it's ok to look good and feel good while I'm trying to lose weight.  I don't have to put off looking and feeling fabulous until I reach my goal weight.  Because life is short.  And why does a size get to dictate my mental frame of mind?  It shouldn't . And on that Halloween day, for me, it didn't.

I bought size 12s and it was ok.

I had a little help though.  My cousin - my decorator, fashion consultant, fun, fashionista cousin - went with me. Her motto in life is, "If it's worth doing, it's worth over-doing," and that's why I get into trouble when I hang out with her love hanging out with her.

We have different fashion senses, she and I.  I stand on the shoreline of fashion's ocean and dip my toe in to test the waters while she wades courageously in, arms outstretched, ready to confidently embrace her fashion choices.  She knows who she is on the inside and isn't afraid to portray it on the outside, size be damned.

Case in point - she tried on a pair of  black velour sweats with the words "Fabulous" scrawled down one leg (size Large, thank you very much), and upon seeing the price tag of $5.99, said, "I can have 'Fabulous' for $5.99?  I'll take it!"  And you know what?  Her ass looked fabulous in those sweats.  It was larger than she would have liked, but it was fabulous, and she knew it.

Of course, while she was trying on fabulous, I was stuck in a size 10 pencil straight black skirt. Literally stuck.  When I couldn't fit it over my hips, I shimmied out of it and actually tried putting it on over my head. Big mistake.  It got stuck over my boobs and I couldn't lift it up or down and thought I was gonna have to shoplift it and cut it off later.

Fortunately, my fabulous cousin was able to yank it off  me.  So much for "it looks like it runs big."  Don't fall for that, by the way.  Try on the size you are, then trade down from there if you are lucky enough to need a smaller size.  Going the other way is just depressing.

After the skirt incident, we went to the Mexican place down the street and had  margaritas, chips, and salsa. We were invigorated for round two of our Halloween shopping adventure.

Perhaps it was the margarita, but round two was definitely more fun than round one.  I didn't mess around and went straight for the size 12's.  And you know what?  They fit great.  I found two pairs of pants and a skirt for work - at Target, of all places.

So here's what I learned from my scary shopping trip:

1.  Wear your spanx when you are going to try on clothes. Everything you try on will look better. Trust me.

2.  You absolutely must shop with someone who says things like, "We're gonna rock that skirt with some lace tights."

3.  Have a margarita before you try anything on. Again...everything will look better.

4.  Stand tall and throw your shoulders back in the mirror - you'd be surprised what a difference it makes.  You look taller, thinner, and more confident.

5.  Layer things.  A super cute sleeveless top that may not be appropriate alone for work can look awesome as a vest over a long sleeved top.  It can always do double duty as nighttime or summer wear.

6.  Cuff your pants.  I never would have thought of this, but try rolling up your pants to about mid calf and wear them with tall boots.  Experiment with a wide or narrow cuff, depending on the pant style.  According to my cousin, cuffing is in.  Of course, knowing my cousin, she may have been talking about the bedroom...

7.  Brown and grey look good together.

8.  Add some color to a neutral outfit with a scarf.  Hang it loose around your neck, or tie it, or wrap it, but it really adds some punch to an outfit.

9.  Don't fall for that "It looks like it runs big" BS. Most of the time, if it's smaller than your normal ain't gonna fit.

And finally, the most important lesson of all:

10.  You can be sexy and stylish while you're at the size you don't want to be, while you're trying to become the size you really want to be, because it's who you are right now.  And you should always, always, love who you are.

Linking this post up over at Natasha's blog, Epic Mommy Adventures, for her Turn It Up Tuesday Link Up. The theme is Halloween posts and although this seems a bit off topic, it really did happen on Halloween. And let's face it girls...dressing room lighting is scary, is it not?


Anonymous said...

I hate shopping on "fat" days! I still have 10 pounds that are clinging for dear life on me and about 2 sizes to go and no end in sight! I think I will have margaritas and lunch with a friend and then see where my shopping takes me. It is a down hill slide for now with Thanksgiving coming up. I better go for elastic waist everything! Ha Ha! Have a good one!

JourneyBeyondSurvival said...

This is an AWESOME post! Good writing. I have to find someone to tell me about lace tights while shopping.

Tree said...

I have missed you!! LOL Hope work is going well, and I'm with ya on #3! ;)

normaleverydaylife said...

Good for you! Sounds like you had a great shopping partner! I hate dressing rooms. I always end up feeling like I look worse there than anywhere else! #turnituptuesday

Lana said...

So glad you ran this again! Ugh...dressing rooms. They definitely need better lighting in there. Love, love, love number 10!

Kimberly said...

So let's talk about that one time I tried on a pair of skinny jeans and I couldn't get them off and I sounded like a panda bear that was getting mauled by a T-Rex.
I have the cankles.
I agree that you shouldn't let a size dictate your mental state because that is who you are NOW. Size doesn't change who you are on your shoulders...but margaritas do and push up bras. Don't question that. OK do, because sometimes when you don't have boobs and you go for the big guns stuffies, your boob practically shoot into your nostrils.

Lori said...

Skinny jeans are dangerous! And I can totally picture the boob up the nostrils thing - not pretty.