When the Little Black Dress Is a Big, Fat Nightmare

dressing roomThere are days I love my job because I get to do incredible things like walk the red carpet of Marvel's The Avengers for The Stir. And then there are the days I hate my job because I have to wear a dress to go walk the red carpet of Marvel's The Avengers for The Stir. Yes, I am one of those rare-found creatures otherwise known as the woman who hates to shop. We do exist!

Wait. I take that back. I love me some perusing of the wares at Tar-jay where I have been known to run in for a new curtain rod and walk out with a cartload of stuff that ran me three figures.

But clothes shopping fills me with the type of horror otherwise reserved for the following: rodents (especially rats), hair in deli sandwiches, and anything my dog yakked up.


If your first thought was "all of the above makes my stomach" turn, well, there you go. I hear "dress up," and my stomach begins to do barrel rolls. When my friend greeted my red carpet news with the "oooh, shopping, yay!" excitement typical for women my age, I burst into tears. Literally.

And through them I had to admit, my relationship with clothing is limited to a devotion to over-sized hoodies and jeans -- both of which I buy in the men's section. In part it's my odd proportions. I have child-bearing hips and the belly pooch that comes with a desk job (and laziness, I'll admit it!). But they're ill-matched with a flat chest and large, Germanic shoulders. If it's big enough to accommodate the shoulders, chances are there isn't enough cleavage to fill it out. And if it's small enough for these teeny tatas, well, you can guess the rest.

In this sense, I'm not that far off the mark for womankind. As many as 47 percent of women will cop to struggling when it comes to finding clothes that flatter their bodies (without looking like something their Great Aunt Edna would wear). In that sense, they hate it too.

But if I have to be completely honest, this isn't just about my body. I could be a size 2 with big bosoms -- OK, no, I couldn't ... ever, at least not without work, but you get my point -- and I'd still walk around the store looking clueless until someone with a clue about fashion swooped in to save me.

I am a woman who simply doesn't know what to wear, when to wear it, or where to wear it for that matter. Until this red carpet event cropped up (and since my bosses are reading this, I should mention I am super, super psyched ... other than the whole dress part of it!), I never even considered buying such wardrobe staples as "the little black dress" or even a pair of strappy heels (the former is winding its way to me thanks to some serious cyber hand-holding through the purchase process by The Stir editor Sasha, who likewise found the appropriate blazer for a chic event on a chilly NY night). Nor do I own the classic black tank top. Or the white button down.

Fashion is my nightmare. And I am the fashion industry's nightmare.

What do you hate about clothes shopping? Any tips to get me through this whole thing?


Image via PinkMoose/Flickr

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