I realized the other day that the reason it drives me crazy to have clothes of various sizes around – because of weight gain/loss – is because it’s new to me. Throughout my 20s I was around the same size – or rather, I didn’t change sizes, but always had some clothes that were tighter or looser, depending on the cut of the clothes or how much I was working out, but everything fit. That’s another way of saying, I suppose, that my weight range was probably within 10 lbs., not 25 as it is now.

So for those of you who have dealt with this before – and I know some of you have dealt with it all your lives – what do you do? When you’re dealing with a variation of three goddamn sizes, 2/3 of the clothes you own don’t fit at any given time. Is this why women say ‘fuck it’ & just go with their largest size? Or does that lead to still larger sizes? Do you actually get rid of the smaller-sized clothes, knowing they’ll most likely be out of fashion by the time you lose the weight anyway? Please, folks, advice. I’m tired of digging through 800 articles of clothing to find the stuff that fits me right now.

& I know: the best answer would be to lose the weight. But having taken off & then put back on 25 lbs. last year, I’m not feeling horribly optimistic about the prospects just now and I still need to get dressed every day.

7 Replies to “Clothes”

  1. It is a tough one for sure. I ended up putting all my levis that I couldn’t fit into in a tupperware box for storage. I figured they don’t go out of style. I also kept some basic pieces – classic blouses/basic sweaters..that kind of thing. Everything else I donated. I broke down and did buy larger sizes which was frustrating because it is a reminder that you are heavier than before – but it beat the hell out of wearing the same 2 outfits all the time. I finally hit my limit with the weight issue and made some major eating changes last January (my first ever resolution). I lost 42 pounds, dragged out my tupperware box only to find out that I should have hit it earlier since everything was too big for me at that point. So I ended up donating those too!

    So I vote for store the classics, quit digging and dress to fit your current size. One must feel good about themselves at whatever size they are.

  2. My mom is one who struggled with weight gain/loss all my life. I remember her having these problems, and did a little research online before posting, too. I honestly think the best thing is to get rid of the clothes that don’t fit you. When buying or acquiring new clothes, you get things that fit you today – not when you lose 5 – 10 lbs. And finding things that are flattering and fit right today can also make you feel more confident and sexy regardless of the number on the scale. Not only do you have a point about things going in and out of fashion while weight fluctuates, I think it would also be liberating to be rid of anything that is too small and makes you feel insecure looking at it. Two cents, to be sure.

  3. thanks to you both. i’m thinking that this sojourn in WI may help, since i’m only going to be packing things i can fit in (& in some cases, things i can fit in with a layer of long underwear underneath). if i lose weight when i get back, perhaps i’ll be able to fit into the next smaller size i’ve got stockpiled.

    if not, then i know what i’ve lived without for 3 months!

  4. I struggle with this. I now have clothes from size 8 to size 16WP. The clothes I don’t fit into “right now” are choking my closet, my drawers, and keeping me from knowing what I have to wear. Seasonal changes are really hard.

    My daughter, who is 5’4″ and 105 lbs, pretty much all the time, has it all figured out. She does not, she says, ever buy anything that doesn’t look fabulous on her. Nothing “OK,” nothing “good enough for the purpose.” That way, she says, whatever she pulls out to wear, even half asleep, even sweats and tees, looks fabulous when she puts it on.

    There’s really no reason I can’t do the same thing in several sizes, but at the larger sizes you get to the point where if you look borderline acceptable in something, you buy it. At least I do.

    Depressingly, I now have an additional box of clothes not in use. Unlike so many other boxes, which are labeled with their size or their weight range, this box is labeled “Thinner fat clothes.”

    My present plan has me — after I finish with excavating my living room and putting up pictures — taking ALL my clothes out of all my closets and drawers and being ruthless. I don’t really know what ruthless will turn out to look like yet, but that’s my plan. It’s really a daily struggle, and I’m sick of it.

    Helen, if I were going to Wisconsin, I’d do what you were doing and think it would work. Once, years ago when I still had a life with this sort of feature, I spent a week on some island and made a list of what I actually used from my one small suitcase. Based on that, I have since traveled pretty much anywhere, for up to a few weeks, with what amounts to most people’s overnight bag. But I’m not a minimalist at home, not at all.

  5. i get rid of them. this means that i have to buy things again when i lose or gain, but i’m not generally purchasing high quality clothing, anyway, so it’s not a big deal. it also just depresses me to continually look at clothes that don’t fit me.

  6. lo, these many long years ago… i was astonished when i learned that most people *gained* weight in the winter. i used to lose weight because i was getting less exercise, so i’d lose the little bit of muscle that i had.

    and then i offended a friend when i learned that other peoples’ jeans wear out first where their thighs rub together. that would have never occurred to me. i wouldn’t have imagined that there were people whose jeans did not first wear out at the knees or the seat.

    but, alas, i now understand. for the first time in my life i have clothes that used to fit just fine, and are now a bit too snug at the waist.

    if i didn’t buy clothes unless i looked fabulous in them, i’d be going naked, which most certainly would *not* look fabulous.

  7. I keep only the clothes that have great emotional value, wedding dresses, lovely gown’s and things that were worn for special life changing moments… those are carefully stored in my cedar chest, otherwise I give them away if they do not fit, and look reasonably good right now.
    I have been buying smaller sizes, not because I have lost weight, but because ” women’s ” sizes have been getting bigger.
    Bottom line, you dont need a lot of clothes, just enough to look good for a couple of weeks of no time to do laundry/dryclean.
    Some special occasion outfits, but good well fitting pants, basic sweaters, some silk turtlenecks and I’m set for the winter.

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