Hard to Fit Women's Clothing
Finding Bargains in Odd Sized Clothing
Big & Tall Clothing
Smaller Clothing Dilemma
Hard to Fit Women's Clothing
I recently read your column on Big & Tall shopping, and while it gave some good tips on finding clothes for men who wear bigger sizes, what about women? I'm nearly 6 feet tall, and the only places I can find pants long enough to fit me are stores that charge $60 or more per pair. Forget thrift store shopping, as the sleeves or pant legs are never long enough! Many of my friends who wear plus sizes tell me that they have similar problems. Plus size options are growing more numerous, but they aren't getting any less expensive. Any tips on finding good deals for us hard to fit women? Thanks!
Know the Sale Cycles
I am also about 6 feet tall. I also have trouble with clothes but have recently found a solution. I have found that certain upscale brands fit my longer limbs and torso. The problem is that they are often pricey. However, all of these stores have 75% off sales several times per year. The best way to determine the sales is to get on their mailing list or email list. They will send you advance notice of the sales. They are usually just before they restock for a new season, such as the first couple of weeks of January and also July. I just paid $10 to $15 each for several pairs of high quality pants. I have been able to repeat this multiple times so it is not just a fluke.
Clothing for Tall Women at JCPenney
JCPenney is a good choice for tall or plus size ladies. I am 6' 1" and I can always find clothes that fit. They have tall, ultra tall and plus size clothes in most of their styles, and at better prices than the custom fit stores. You can usually find things on sale or get a coupon through the mail to save a little money. It is not "thrift shopping," but you don't have to spend your whole paycheck for one nice outfit.
From One Tall Woman to Another
I can sympathize with this reader, as I am also an extra-tall woman (6'5") with a 35" inseam. Pants and shoes seem to be the most challenging items to find inexpensively, but they can be found.
- Many clothing lines (Worthington, Lee, Chic) have tall pants and jeans, and JCPenney (Worthington) usually has plenty of sales on these items.
- I do find some items at the thrift store. I just scan the bottom of the racks of pants to see what hangs lower than others. Shirts, coats, jackets, etc. sometimes are a bit challenging due to my longer arms and wider shoulders, but I still find items in the thrift stores.
- Shoes are my issue. I wear men's sneakers out of necessity, but I found that Payless Shoe carries a limited selection of dress and casual shoes. You can also find shoes online for larger feet, but they do tend to be more expensive.
Love Eddie Bauer for Tall Women's Clothing
I am a 6'2" woman and I buy just about everything from Eddie Bauer. You can find tall sizes for men and women. In their catalogs, they have a wonderful selection and outstanding quality. Yes, they can be a bit pricey but not so much if you wait until the sales. I also Google "Eddie Bauer discounts" and almost always find some sort of discount to add to my order (if you go to the retail store to order from the catalog, the shipping is free). They also have an unconditional return policy. Check out www.eddiebauer.com.
Sewing Is Always an Option
Sewing your own clothes is the best option to be sure that your clothes always fit properly. It's really not as hard as you might think, and you get the bonus of choosing your own fabrics. My grandma gave me her old sewing machine and taught me some of the basics of how to use it. I picked up some of the very simplest patterns and was really amazed at what I could create just by following the directions. I started sewing pajamas and things to wear around the house to improve my skills, and now I sew about 90% of my own clothes and save quite a bit.
I also took a class at my local community college that helped me learn how to alter patterns to fit me perfectly. Once you alter a few basic patterns, you can make them over and over in different fabrics.
If you can't imagine yourself sewing, you might inquire at fabric stores for someone who might be interested in sewing for you. My mom doesn't like to sew, and she found two or three people over the years that were very willing to sew clothes for her. She still saves quite a bit over retail.
Mary Anne in Warren, MI
Buy Clothing for Tall Women Online
At 5'9" with a 34" inseam, I know the feeling of being ripped off for high prices on longer pants. What I have found in general is that the brick and mortar stores won't stock very many "tall" pants since they can't move the inventory as quickly. However, there is a wealth of online shopping sources for us. I have bought pants from Land's End with much success. I like the tailoring and the quality. You can also order them unhemmed, but read the descriptions carefully as not all of them have this option.
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Other online sources that I have had success with are L.L.Bean, Newport News and Chadwicks. They are more reasonably priced than many other online stores. And the good news is that if you shop in the sale sections of these websites, you may find many tall sizes for sale since they won't be selling as often as their regular length items. Just keep a few sites on your favorites bar and check in weekly to see what's on sale.
Also, if you are simply looking for jeans, you may be able to find the length and cut you need at the mall in an Eddie Bauer clothing store. And some of the JCPenney stores will stock a considerable inventory of tall dress pants, but if not, try their online store. They, too, are very reasonably priced.
Rhonda in Denver
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