Today, I went suit shopping. In two weeks, I'm going to the UK to visit the home office and my usual colorful business casual choices will not work. (I work in insurance.) I needed an additional black or dark grey suit. This, unfortunately, required me to do something I hate. Shop.
Problem #1: Apparently, this year the designers for my basic department store brands think that it is a good idea to make suits out of fabric threaded with silver sparkles or put leather trim on everything. Or peplums. Or to only have pants suits. Why designers? Why?
Problem #2: Sizing is different in every single store. I went to three different stores today and tried on three different in the same damn size. One was too tight (as in I couldn't zip the skirt.) One was slightly too big. One was way too big. I wound up buying the slightly too big one as I can take that one to the seamstress and have it altered to fit if I so choose. For the love of Pete, I do not understand why they have to have so much variation in sizing. I know. Vanity sizing. But dude, I don't care what size my clothing says it is if it fits.
Problem #3: This is the thing that made shopping hardest today and why I was forced to buy a suit slightly too big. In some stores, I am on the smaller side of plus. In other stores, I'm on the bigger side of straight. This means, I go to the plus sized department. I try on their smallest suits. Too big! I go to the straight sized department, I try on their biggest suits. Too small!
I will use the final store as an example. The smallest size in the "women's" department was a size 16W. It was slightly too big. It was okay. The jacket looked like it was swallowing me and the skirt hung off me a little. So I think "Hmm...I could go down a size. This meant that I went to the other side of the store to the misses and got their biggest size (a 14). I couldn't even zip the skirt and I couldn't button the jacket. (I have a big chest and broader shoulders.) If their sizing had been the same for both sides of the store, I would have fit in a 14. There is no doubt in my mind. P.S. There is absolutely no way that I'm a 14 by anyone's standards.
I bought the slightly too big one because it was the best option of all the ones that I tried on. It wasn't sparkly. There was no peplum. It was just a basic black suit.
Grumble Grumble Grumble