Have you ever noticed that sometimes, as you get older, you stop liking some of the things you used to like and start liking new things? You just age out of certain things, you know? Like breast milk. And the band Sublime. And "being an astronaut" (that shit is like 364 days of math, 1 day of barfing re-hydrated cheese pellets inside a flying zero-gravity barrel). Nutty, right!? God, I love observations.
Well, the New York Times style section is intrigued by this concept too. They wrote a whole article (that is so much article!) about the phenomenon of adults, particularly those settling into their 30s, "breaking up" with their favorite clothing brands. And let me tell you—this is tough stuff, folks. Be warned. Take one woman's tragic "break-up" with J. Crew:
"I was in love with the clothes and became a devotee," said Ms. Brashich, 41, a writer who now lives in Vancouver, British Columbia. "I considered myself a J. Crew person." But over the years, she said, she found the clothes became "too refined" for her lifestyle.
It was as devastating as a romantic breakup, she said, only half in jest. First, she felt anger. "I would go into the stores and tell the manager, ‘I'm your target customer; you're losing me.' " Then she felt depressed. "I don't have my brand anymore," she said. "I don't know where to shop. If I need new, hip khakis, I don't know where to go."
Are you people even listening? THIS LADY DOES NOT KNOW WHERE TO GO FOR KHAKIS ANYMORE. And people say there isn't a "war on women." Sorry to get so emotional—it's just really hard for me to read stories like this because I'm still pretty traumatized about the time I turned six and I had to break up with Osh Kosh B'Gosh.
Anyway, w-evs. I'm sure it's totally annoying to realize that you no longer relate to your favorite brand and you're forced to switch to your second-favorite brand. However, I have no idea what that annoyance feels like because, as a plus-size shopper, I only have two fucking options (of questionable quality and inflated prices) at any mall in this entire country. (Online shopping increases the options to maybe ten stores—score!—but sometimes you just need to go to the mall and buy some goddamn pants.) Seriously, if you get ten plus-size women together in a room, eleven of us will be wearing the same dress. And if plus-size women "age out" of Torrid (here's a hard truth: one can only wear pilly pin-up dresses festooned with skulls and cherries so far into one's 30s), our only option is to "age into" Lane Bryant. Upside, though: ill-fitting polyester smocks are perfect for fat women of any age!
So, um, no, I can't muster a ton of sympathy for "problems" like this:
Thanks to a new baby, Anne Slowey, fashion news director at Elle Magazine, has gone through a few recent designer breakups herself, with both the towering stiletto-based silhouette she formerly favored from Balenciaga or Yves Saint Laurent and fashion-forward Japanese designers like Junya Watanabe and Comme des Garçons.
That's just such a foreign concept to me—to have infinity options and then complain when they're reduced to infinity-minus-one. Of course, none of this is the fault of standard-size women (except for the ones who run clothing companies and, for some reason, don't want a bajillion fat-people dollars), but there's more than a whiff of blind entitlement around the whole complaint.
I would kill to be so inconvenienced.
Photo credit: (C) smithore / Stockfresh.