Friday, January 7, 2011

Dear Shopping Savage...

Dear Shopping Savage,

I'm a petite girl and usually just make do with pants that are too long or tops that don't quite fit through the torso. While I make it work, most friends have suggested to me to get everything tailored. Can I justify spending more on the tailoring than what I spent on the outfit?


In need of Ann Tailor


Dear I.N.O.A.T.,

Your petite problem is in fact quite large. So many people settle for their clothing's short-and-long comings that its hard to decipher if the downward economy has all but phased out tailors or if people have taken off the rack clothing's "ready-to-wear" moniker too literally.

In your case, a great place to start would be with brands that offer petite sizing. This should help alleviate some of your tailoring needs while getting you into clothing that is properly proportioned for your body type. But that's putting the shopping cart before the closet. Your first plan of action should be recon work for your current wardrobe. Plan to spend a weekend trying on the things that you recall living in your closet that may need alterations. There's nothing worse than having a wardrobe riddled with things you wish you could wear if it weren't for the fit.

If the pile of alterations outsizes what's left hanging in your closet then you shouldn't plan for any retail therapy until you have found a tailor that you trust to execute the fit you envision. Take however many pieces at a time that works best for your schedule and budget, but every trip you take to pickup alterations should also be looked at as a trip to take something else in, excuse the pun.

Once everything in the pile is tailored and you're ready to shop again, consider perusing sale sections and designer discount stores for deals. Buying marked down items creates the financial buffer you'll need to employ a good tailor. In the long run, the money you're not spending on new, potentially ill-fitting items, will balance out the tailoring costs (especially if the tailoring cost is still below what you would have paid retail for it). You'll never have to just "make do" with your wardrobe again, and that kind of assurance is priceless.

Need help finding a tailor that fits you? Try these tips on for size.

Need sartorial advice? Email me:

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