She looks pretty skinny to me!

It’s Bathing Suit Season, People! At least it’s Expose More of Yourself Because it’s So Bloody Hot Season. Because I’m such a generous lazy person, I thought I’d pull an old post from the archives for your edification and entertainment. I hope you find it edifying and entertaining.


I spent the bulk of my life as a young woman of substance. That’s my way of saying I was stocky, rotund, fleshy, big-boned. I finally lost all by “baby fat” when I was about 45, but until then, finding clothes that fit and made me feel good about myself was “mission impossible.”

I learned a few tricks along the way and want to share them with anyone who knows the feeling of fighting with your cloths and losing. I’m just trying to save you some pain–physical and emotional. A list of fashion “Do’s” is more my style, being such a positive person, but if I had known what to do in terms of fashion as a young woman, I would have done those things and saved myself a lot of grief.

This list is short. It’s easy to remember and hard to mess up. I would’ve appreciated a list like this when I was young and shopping for school clothes that didn’t make me look like a less hunched over version of my grandmother.

  1. Avoid anything made of material that doesn’t stretch. It’s simple physics: something in the equation has to give–you or the garment. Make sure it is always the garment that gives. No piece of clothing is worth sacrificing an appendage you may need someday for your career.
  2. Avoid anything that doesn’t have an escape hatch. All garments should have zippers, buttons, Velcro, or bungee cords. Avoid snaps–they’re notoriously unreliable. I once got caught in a cotton cap-sleeved slip-on dress. It had a lovely yellow flower print–I remember it well because I was stuck inside it for quite some time. It slipped on over my head and through my arms. But the sleeves got stuck on my bulky upper arms. I escaped before I suffocated only because the stitching on the sleeves was no match for my will to live.
  3. When choosing a garment that stretches, make sure it’s plenty large. You want to hide your bulges, not accentuate them. If the garment clings, say, to your belly or thighs like a second skin, opt for a larger size or something different. I once, on the advice of my mother, got a brown polyester top and pants combo. Twiggy or Kate Moss could have pulled off the ensemble brilliantly. I, however, looked like a walking large intestine.

    She could pull off any ensemble…except one that required cleavage.

    I was more like Marilyn, but with more abundant curves in less fortunate places. A girl can dream, can’t she?

  4. Color matters. Black is a safe bet, but not your only choice. Solid colors are generally safe unless they make you look less like a girl and more like an object for ridicule. The above-mentioned too-tight polyester outfit was brown–imagine a rotten banana with goiters.

    Stripes as a fashion statement have been so overdone.

  5. Say “no” to stripes. They are an invitation for people who enjoy those mind-numbing optical illusion games.
  6. Accessorize wisely. Choose items that will draw people’s eyes away from your trouble spots. I suggest a spiffy leash to walk an exotic animal like a Bengal tiger or crocodile.

That’s it. Simple and easy to remember.

Now you’re ready to knock ’em out on the beach!

Never underestimate the value of those accessories, People!

Never underestimate the value of those accessories, People!