Sizing things up (er, down)

To my dear readers, I know that this blog is mainly about DIY and all things eco/fashion, but today I’m going to have a little chat (read: vague rant) about garment sizing. Last year I bought this skirt at Savers. It fits me pretty much perfectly, as you can see.

What size do you think it is, or perhaps more appropriately, what size do you think I am? I have to admit I am not actually sure, mainly because I rarely buy new clothing, but also because there are no real standards for measurements in Australia. But on the extremely infrequent occasions that I do try on new garments in the shops, I’m somewhere between a 6 and an 8 in Australian sizing. 
So it may surprise you to know that this skirt is a size 12. 

That is, it was a size 12 back in the 1980s, which I am guessing is when this skirt came into being. Now, I can tell you that my measurements have hardly changed since I was 12*, which was also back in the 1980s (aggh). Yep, they’re pretty much what it says here, give or take a few centimetres…

… and that is why I find it ridiculous that clothing sizes have “dropped” so dramatically over the years. It’s the label that has gone from a 12 to a 6, not me! Apparently in the near future Australian sizing is going to be standardised, which I think is a great idea, because currently every label is just doing its own thing which is probably why sizes have decreased so much. At least vanity sizing has become so crazy that it can’t go any further without going into negative figures. If it were to continue this way, I’d be a minus 6 or something in a few years. 

What do you think about vanity sizing? Do you like it or do you just think it’s silly? 
Anyway, what I also wanted to say was that I do like seeing old labels on clothing – I much prefer this old Katies logo to the one they have now, but it’s also like a little history lesson to see what a size 12 meant back then. If you are into vintage (or if you have read The Women in Black – which I highly recommend) then you will know garments used to carry sizing like “SSW” – after reading that book, I noticed one of my vintage coats had that kind of size code on its label, which I had not realised before. Interesting, don’t you think?

And with that, I’ve managed to include a rant, a bit of a history lesson and a book recommendation all in the one post! Phew, it’s off to bed for me…

*Except for the semester I spent at uni in Japan when I gorged myself on convenience store ice-cream every day because it was cheap. My waist measurements went up just a little bit in that time!!

日本では洋服のサイズの付け方はこの数年、変わってきましたか?オーストラリア生まれ育ちの私なので、日本での場合がちょっと分からないのですが、オーストラリアではかなり変わってきました。大学時代から現在にかけて、自分の寸法はほぼ同じなのですが、大学生の時は多分12サイズぐらいでした。写真ではチャリティショップで見つけた80年代の12サイズのスカートをはいっていますが、今お店で新品のスカートを買ったら、多分6から8サイズになると思います。20年前の寸法と今の寸法が変わっていないのに!変だと思いませんか?英語では「vanity sizing」(「自慢できるサイズ」という意味)ですが、どんどん小さいサイズを付けたことで、女性がうれしくなって買ってくれるというコンセプトらしいです。「普段は10サイズなのにこのブランドでは8サイズでも着れる。やった!買うわ!」という経験、ありませんか?それはただ、本当は10サイズの物を8サイズにすることで、お客さんが喜びを感じて購入してくれるとブランドが使っている技です。心理学とファッションの関係、中々深いですね。私は、着れるなら別にどんなサイズが書かれてもかまわないのですが、皆さん、どうですか?数字の小ささで買ってしまったこと、ありますか?

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