Tag Archives: body image

Sew Colette: Fitting Revelations and something to be Sew Grateful for!!

All my life, a good fit has been like a fashion oasis to me. I would spy a beautiful fabric, colour, or style that would entice me to draw nearer, just to find myself wearing the same rumpled, twisted, creased mess as always.

Even with learning about the ‘main body types’ it only confused me more, because I don’t fit any of those categories!! Until yesterday, when I read the post about body shapes on Rhinestones & Telephones and spied a new one I’d never seen… the Strawberry shape. What was this? I thought, and read it. Now THAT sounds a little more like it… but I wasn’t entirely convinced by the post I read, because while the pants looked like something I’d wear comfortably, I’d NEVER wear a bulky long sweater like that, it draws too much attention to my upper body and makes me feel gigantic!!

So I did a little more research and found an amazing article that completely changed my perspective:

THIS ONE!! According to this article, I’m in the same category as Naomi Campbell – WHOOP!! LOL

Another excellent article on styling strawberry:

Dressing for the Strawberry Shape

Now, body image issues are no joke and it’s not surprising that encountering a poor fit in RTW can lead one to have gross misconceptions about one’s body. We are made to believe that good fit = being skinny, and if your clothes don’t fit, you’re too fat. Period. Proportion is never discussed and no one tells us that cup sizes matter for more than just bras. I’m not fat, I just have a big chest! I literally JUST figured this out yesterday – i know… DUH right? It seems so obvious now!!! But when the light bulb went off, I suddenly saw my body in a totally new way – not a freakish disproportionate mess, but a beautiful, unique thing that I suddenly knew I could fit right – the way fit was meant to be… the fit I’ve always dreamed of!!! 🙂

But I only recently found out that the big pattern companies draft for a B cup, and it still didn’t make me clue in that I was buying patterns ALMOST FOUR SIZES TOO BIG because I was buying patterns and RTW to fit my chest…. so inevitably, fabric creased, bunched and pinched in all sorts of areas, and I still never got a good fit. I always thought this was because I needed to lose weight, but even when I was fitness training, and at a competition level body fat percentage, i was still having trouble fitting into a Large top, and why?? Not because i was FAT but because I needed to fit my chest and ribcage. Incidentally, I also could never wear sleeved tops in woven fabrics, because my bicep is apparently too big :/

It is serendipitous that this revelation should come at the end of Sew Grateful week, because even though on the surface, it sounds like a little thing, you have no idea how MASSIVE a relief this is to me, to finally understand my body, the fitting issues i’ve suffered with my entire life, and to finally get a glimmer of an idea of how to get the fit I never thought was possible. I will keep you posted on what adjustments are needed for this body type, in case anyone else is struggling to try and fit theirs! 🙂 It truly is something to be incredibly grateful for, and I am quite literally, a new woman for it.

2011 – The Year in Review, and Looking Ahead to 2012

I thought I’d take a few minutes to reflect on the year past, as it occurred to me I have been focused so much on my goals ahead that I rarely ever take time to reflect on the things I’ve accomplished.

I don’t subscribe to the traditional New Year’s Resolutions idea – what I do is make a long term list of goals, similar to my ongoing t0-do list only on a larger scale. In 2011 however, there was one big goal for me to achieve and that was:

“To acknowledge and recognize my unique beauty the way God intended me to be instead of self-deprecating. To be the best I can be the way God made me, not how society wants me: to be a beautiful healthy vessel for HIS spirit, not the world’s”

I realize not everyone has the same beliefs, but for me, in order to overcome a crippling sense of self deprecation, and debilitating body image issues, it was essential for me to focus on my spiritual nature, and the nature of my faith and beliefs. That was my main goal for 2011, and while I am always learning and growing, I think I can say I have more or less achieved that one 🙂

Once this was accomplished, I was in a place where I could focus on healthy self growth. I focused whole heartedly on my art, rekindled my desire for fashion, and to take up sewing again, and finally, to determinedly pursue better health and wellness.

Since the fall of 2011, I’ve taught myself a few new and ambitious recipes, started a painting for the first time in years, bought a serger and taught myself how to thread and use it, completed a blouse (during which I learned several new skills), started and maintained this blog, started and maintained taking vitamins again, started and maintained a regular exercise regime, and have lost ten pounds total so far (even over the holidays!) 🙂

For 2012, I have many goals in mind. I’d like to continue the things I’ve started and see them through. I also want to make a more handmade tailored wardrobe, planned carefully and made with care and attention to detail. There are many things I’ve never done and would like to try, such as making at least one jacket (i have a fetish for jackets!!), making a corset (i also have a fetish for corsets LOL), learning the fine art of correct fitting and maybe even getting it down, as well as participating in sewalongs, contests, and community challenges.

To all my fellow sewists and artists out there, I hope to see you in some of the same forums, challenges and sewalongs – may 2012 be a year of peace, growth, learning and accomplishment for all of us!!! 🙂