ack, my pants!

tunage: moonsung by sheila chandra

i belong to that group of women who happen to be rather more than less substantial of figure. because of this it’s sometimes hard to find pants that fit flatteringly. add to that the fact that i wear jeans a lot and am rather hard on them (i split a pair up the back playing ultimate frisbee in june), i am often on the hunt for a new pair. i used to wear tommy hilfiger’s boyfriend jeans, but at $60 a pop, those got too expensive. not to mention that they’re not even listed on tommy’s web site anymore. they don’t even sell boyfriend jeans at macy’s now. but i digress.

because of all of this, i went to old navy’s $12 jeans sale last saturday. the store was, of course, crowded, so i wasn’t able to get into a fitting room to try on the sweetheart jeansi’d picked out. in fact, i’d never owned a pair of old navy jeans before, so i had no idea what their sizing was like. i held up the size i normally wore and looked at it, and it looked like a good fit.

but when i got home and put them on, i could pull the waistband out at least two inches from where it should have been holding its place on my tummy. the bum, hips and thighs are very roomy. i don’t mind having comfy jeans, but i’d like them to fit me well and not make me look all baggy. i have enough baggage on me as it is.

all this led me to the inevitable question — had i been a victim of vanity sizing? i’m pretty sure i’ve not lost any weight this summer, and i might have even gained a pound or two more (oh horrors). had i found my way into a pair of jeans that was actually a size or two bigger than my size, but labeled with the smaller number to make the women wearing them feel better? meg cabot’s heroine heather wells describes a somewhat humorous situation like mine, only she had the time and good sense to try on the jeansbefore she bought them. trust me, i have no bone to pick with the basic idea of making women feel more confident about their appearance. if that confidence is based on lying and flattery, however, what’s that really telling them? “oh, you’re not good enough the way you are, so we’re just lying to you to make you feel better!”

where is the logic in that?