Size Wars

Sometime in the early 90’s (1990’s that is) Rich Torres, columnist for the Gazette, wrote a wonderful piece about clothing sizes.   While it’s too long ago for me to quote him verbatim, here’s the highlights of the piece:

  • Men do not care if their jean size is published in dark, boldface print on their rear, where anyone can read
  • Women Do
  • Women do not care if an outfit is in circus tent size, as long as the size tag reads size 6 or less
  • Women would buy everything in the store, if only everything was labeled “Size 2”

(Rich, if you’re reading this and I misquoted, please forgive – I really think you should be impressed that I remembered your name and the highlights of the article – I mean, c’mon, it’s been nearly 20 years!)


Fast forward a few years to my  lunch with friends recently.   The subject of NYDJ denim wear came up. (That’s “Not Your Daughter’s Jeans”, for those who, like me, are fashion challenged.)  Apparently, these are the jeans for those of us who don’t look like teeny-boppers anymore.

Here’s the highlights of that conversation:

Friend 1 – “They are absolutely wonderful!”

Friend 2 – “A great bargain at $100”

Me – “$100 for jeans?   Do you know how much wheat I could get for that?”

(Insert polite silence, while friends try to control eye rolling reaction…)


I go home and Googlelize NYJD.  Yup, rave reviews.

Yup, average price, $90 – $100.

You can get capris in last summer’s fashion colors for $49, but for the most part, unless you buy the ugly ones, you’re looking at a Ben Franklin to purchase these new wonder clothes.

Realize I am interested, because I’m over 40, have had children and am too busy cleaning house and cooking yummy food to waste time with a personal trainer (I don’t care how cute he his, unless he does windows.)

Also,  the Steve and Barry jeans I bought for $9.99 six years ago have worn so thin they are starting to split in various places.   The Urban Pipeline jeans I got hand-me down from my oldest son 5 years ago are about toast, too.

I have five pairs of Rocky Mountain Jeans, ranging from size 5 – 7, that I look Fabulous in, if only I could get them past my knees.  They hang in my closet, patiently waiting for me to get my stuff together and then flushed out along with about 40 lbs of water weight…


So off to Dillards I go, to see if these NYDJ jeans are all they are cracked up to be.  Mind you, I will only purchase if I think they will last between 5 and 10 years PLUS do everything all the reviews said they would (lift, tuck, size 10-12 me in size 6 jeans, fame, fortune, etc., etc….)

I tried on 8 pairs – 2 different sizes in 4 different styles.

I was not impressed.  And I was definitely not $100 impressed.

Which was fine.  Who really wants to spend the next 4 years’ wheat budget on a pair of pants?

As I was putting the jeans back in their proper places on the shelf, I looked at one of the tags to make sure I was putting it in the proper place in the stack of multiple sizes (I used to work where they sold t-shirts, folded in stacks – I know what a pain it is straightening clothing stacks!) Guess what the size tag said?

“US  – Size 6”
“UK – Size 10”

Really?   Apparently, marketing professionals read Rich’s editorial too, and are tagging their clothes appropriately.   Since you’re encouraged to purchase NYDJ jeans in a size or two smaller than you normally wear, and since their size 6 is, in reality (at least in the United Kingdom) a size 10, that means you’re buying size 12 – 14 jeans that are labeled size 6.

These are wonder jeans.  As in, I wonder what the hell is happening to reality….


I really did need some jeans.  Since I’m a haus frau now, my closet full of work clothes don’t really get much wear (I mean, who wants to do laundry while wearing skirt, pantyhose, heels and slip?)

Over to Kohl’s I go and look at the jeans selection.   Got 2 pairs of Lee, slimming (something or other) in Size 8 long – which I suspect is actually a size 10, but what the heck?   On sale and with my 15% off coupon, $16.79 each.

Only spent  a little over 1 year’s wheat budget…..


They are comfy and feel sturdier than the NYDJ ones.   Hubby came into kitchen, stood behind me for awhile and then smacked the tooshy and said, “Looks Good”.

I think he was referring to the home-made foccacia bread he could see while gazing over my shoulder….



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