When I looked at the calendar and realized I hadn't sent out a newsletter in a few months, I was shocked. What happened - didn't we just have Labor Day? Just like we've fallen back out of Daylight Savings Time, and we've been seeing Christmas decorations in the stores since before Halloween, the year is truly slipping away. It brings to mind a quote from one of my favorite authors, Gretchen Rubin:
Individual days sometimes seem to drag by but the years speed by pretty quickly. I must admit I've been pretty caught up in my new venture of designing closets (which I love, by the way) and that has caused the time to fly by in a productive and inspiring way.

But in between appointments and the general running around, I've been thinking a lot lately about size, and not just closet size. What's been in my mind is our obsession with size, especially when it comes to the size of clothing we wear. So that's the topic of this newsletter - does size really matter? I've got a nice cup of coffee and a quiet Saturday morning set aside to share some thoughts that I hope will inspire you. And of course, I'd love to hear anything you'd like to share with me. Happy reading!
Does Size Matter?

As an image professional, I see fresh fashion come into the stores each season. When I get my clients into the dressing room to try on these new styles, I often bring in two or three sizes of the same piece. What I know from experience is that I can’t rely on sizes being equal in every brand.

My goal is to get my client into the best fitting pant, top, dress, or jean. When she goes home with a shopping bag of new clothes, items could be in four or five different sizes. What I know is that she looks great in these new pieces. They fit well, they flatter her figure and that’s what matters.

Yet sizes can be such a stumbling block for women. If they’ve always been a size 10, they are loath to go up a size even if it looks better on them. They reject fit and comfort and want to squeeze into that size 10 no matter the image cost.

Let’s talk about that cost.

When the seams of a garment are straining, this is what people may surmise: "This woman must be out of touch or maybe she doesn’t care how she looks." The same can be said about the woman who wears baggy, ill-fitting clothes.

People size you up in seconds and if you look uncomfortable or out of touch in your clothes then your image as a confident, successful person drops. Doubt comes into the picture. Your reputation takes a blow.

This is too big a price to pay for trying to fit into a garment that matches a number you’re used to instead of fiddling with different sizes to find the piece that most lines up with the shape of your body. For a woman wearing clothes that are too big, she may not trust the new sizes I’m putting her into because she has that same hold about “being” a certain size.

Where do you suppose this obsessive hold on size comes from?

Sometimes it's a husband or mother who was obsessed with a woman being a certain size. And if she wasn’t that size, she spent years and years not accepting herself or loving herself as she was.

Clearly peer pressure still plays a big factor, as young women are obsessed with size and calories before they are even in their teens. This can be a wake-up call to who those of us who have been so hard on ourselves - we can see the pain and pattern of self-criticism the young women around us are starting to develop.

I so remember my high school years and my feelings
surrounding size - I was taller than most of the other girls
and weighed more. This was great when trying out for
the basketball team, but not so great when it
came time for cheerleader tryouts. I still tried out,
but it was always the small, petite girls who won out.
Of course, once I got out in the real world, I learned
that tall wasn't bad at all, but I did struggle
with that number on the scale for a long time,
always trying to get down into the 120's. Now that feels laughable,
since I know that my 5'9" frame just can't exist at that weight.
But try telling me that in my younger years!

This I know: Your body is aching to feel accepted just as it is, today, right now. You can give your body that gift by adorning it in clothes that fit and flatter. It’s a fallacy to think that being a certain size is the only time you’ll be attractive. It’s best to drop any expectation you have about sizing.

One of my favorite tips on dealing with size is this:

On top of it all, the way clothes are sized is continually changing. I see this all the time because I’m in the stores and in dressing rooms with women of all sizes during my workweek.

When you take the focus off of size, you can actually see the beauty in clothes: their design, details, textures, patterns, and lines. Focus on beauty and style first. Don’t give “size” any energy.

What do you think? Have you had any hangups on size that you can share with me? Any great solutions or tips you've found that you can pass on? I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Let's put size in its place!
Deeper Into the Closet

I don't know about you but, with the holidays just around the corner, II always take a much closer look my home and look for ways to spiff it up . This article from Apartment Therapy has some good tips for general decorating faux pas you might not even realize you're doing (a particular pet peeve of mine is the one about hanging art.) Read it here.

As far as closets go, I'll add in my favorite tip here:

*Try to make some room in your guest room closet for guests to hang up their clothing. Since many of us use all of our closets for our own things, it might be difficult, but even making a little hanging space will be thoughtful for your guests. (And how about providing some nice, non-wire hangers while you're at it.)

And here's another idea your guests will benefit from: many of us haven't slept or even laid down on our guest beds. Give it a try before guests come and take an assessment. Is the mattress saggy in the middle, or is it hard as a rock? Most people like a mattress somewhere in between those spectrums. For the extra hard mattress, why not pop a cushioning feather-bed on top for a little extra comfort?

It's the little things that make for a pleasant stay.
A Few More Things to Share...

When it comes to shopping on-line , the size issue gets even murkier. These tips can help you navigate those waters.
Love this little trick for helping your lipstick to stay in place...
Okay - I've been sewing since a young age, but I didn't learn to sew a button this way . But it makes great sense (and now maybe my buttons won't fall off so easily!)
If You're Not Sure...
...about what it is I actually do as an image consultant, please click on the image to the right for a short video that describes my services.
Let's Stay in Touch!
I'd love it if you would connect with me on social media! I'm posting all sorts of additional style and fashion resources that you might like.
A Few Closing Thoughts...

Our weather has truly turned to Fall here in northern California and with that comes lots of good stuff: football...fall leaves...warm soups...and of course, boots! I'm usually ready by now to put away my sandals for a while and enjoy boot-weather. And sweaters too! (Which calls to mind this funny little clip from Saturday Night Live.)

What's your favorite part of Fall?

Thanks for reading. All my best to all of you!

VP Social Media & Marketing, 2014-2017
President 2012-2013
Association of Image Consultants International -
San Francisco Bay Area
Adena DiTonno | adenaDesigns| 415-729-1008 | adena@adenadesigns.net| www.adenadesigns.net