Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Trippy Shopping Trip

Went shopping for maternity clothes last Sunday. OMG!! What a trip!

Friday I had lunch with my BFF and her delicious 8 month old boy (via donor egg). She brought me 2 shopping bags full of maternity clothes. She’s going to have to take most of it back. Of the 2 shopping bags full of clothes, about 5 things work for me. My friend did not take into consideration how differently we’re built. My chest is about 3 times as big as hers. The under the bust seams on the maternity tops and dresses only come down about as far as my nipples. So sad. Some of it is beautiful stuff, but no go.

So Sunday I pushed myself out of my apartment and went to Destination Maternity. Just one more thing to make this all feel more real! Geez, this stuff is expensive (and I only got sale items)! Hate spending so much for things I’ll only wear for a few months, but I’ve been so uncomfortable in my regular clothes. The cheap knock-off belly bands I’ve gotten on eBay have helped, but I’m tired of tugging and leaving buttons open. So, rejecting basically anything with under the boobs seaming, I found a bunch of stuff to try on.

Over the years, I have learned some things that help me make more flattering choices, but that can be limiting as well. Other than the big boob thing (on a fairly small frame, narrow shoulders, small ribcage, no back fat), I have heavy upper arms. I’ve learned that, counter to intuition, my arms look MUCH better in sleeveless tops than in short sleeves or, the worst, cap sleeves. Think about it this way, short sleeves cut across my chubby upper arms at their heaviest point, emphasizing the chub. Sleeveless gives me an unbroken line from my shoulder down. As far as sleeves, long sleeves and 3/4 sleeves are fine, but not in NYC in the Summer. Ick! I did find a couple of tops with sleeves to the elbow. That works too. This concept applies to skirts as well. If a skirt cuts across the middle of my calf (thickest part), I look heavier and, frankly, dumpy. (I’m only 5’3”.) The ideal skirt length for me is just at the bottom of my knee cap. But at least skirts can usually be shortened easily (unless there’s detailing at the hem).

OY! Sorry for going on about my clothing fit philosophy, but a girl wants to look as good as she can as her waist disappears.

So, I’m trying on things. Mostly, I can tell right away if something works. I was wavering on a skirt, not sure about the way it was hanging, when I noticed the strap on belly. The! Strap! On! Belly! Holy crap! It was labeled “7 month belly,” and even had a belly button. I put it on. Suddenly the skirt hung perfectly. I put on a top and looked in the mirror. Who was this PREGNANT woman? I stepped out of the dressing room, freaking out a bit. Another woman trying on clothes and one of the sales women looked at me indulgently. “Your first?” one of them asked. “Yes,” I squeaked.

Seriously SURREAL!

I left the store after spending too much money on 5 tops and a skirt. With the fancy shopping bag with the word MATERNITY emblazoned on it. I wondered if it would get me a seat on the subway, since my little belly isn’t doing it yet.

For some reason I had trouble sleeping that night.

BTW, if anyone has any maternity clothes they’d consider passing on (and that they think might work for my body), I’d be happy to pay postage.