I'm not a very politically correct person, but I do have sensitivities and I also don't walk on egg shells when it comes to body size. I remember my mother saying my legs were like 'hammocks' when I was about 9. I remember being called 'buffalo' in middle school for years by a boy in class. Growing up I was only allowed a 'sliver' of cake or pie or whatever else it was that was making me fat, and I distinctly remember when I was about 11, my mother asking me if I was 'okay' when I didn't want an ice cream cone.
Wow, it looks like I had a pretty horrid childhood in those above few sentences, doesn't it? I didn't in the least. My late mother was amazingly encouraging of my creative side, I left home and grew into my own person, loosing nearly 50 pounds when I became vegan. I came home and got hit on by that boy who called me 'buffalo' when I was a child, and now that I am an adult, I feel no need to sit and take any comment toward my size. As a result I have a very sharp tongue.
This all brought me to thinking how we actually think of ourselves, visually. I think sewing helps. I haven't bought RTW in about 3 years. I don't have to worry about the crazy inconsistency of modern clothing sizes, or the tent like garments or to the opposite, the unnecessarily 'sexy' paper thin see through tops. It's not as if you can bluntly guess in sewing, "Oh, I'm this and that," and get amazing results. A lot comes down to math. And what is math? Honesty.
Being honest in how you see yourself is more valid than how sensitive in what you want to be called. If you have a gut, say so. Its not as if no one else can't see it. Thick thighs, fine. Fat arms (raises hand), okay. Double chin....yeah.
Plump, Curvaceous, Zoftig, Voluptuous, Plus Size, Rotund, Stout, Fat
My politically correct size index. I left out a few, and some might say rotund is worse than stout, but some people love the compliment their boobs being 'rotund' so there counts the word's extra bonus points.
First off I don't think anyone wants to be fat. Period. Thats not what I'm taking about. Just like I don't think people want to be short, or unwillingly bald, or old, or have bad skin. Duh! But ample (which is my favorite word next to stout) has been expected since the beginning of time.
I just decided that for me, and for the styles I like, I was going to find the most relevant identifiers I could and see how they were in their element. And when I think of larger women from the 30s, I think of Lila and Rita Sue.
Carnivale was an awesome show, but those two women, who were sexy unapologetic and stout, helped me identify with some of the characters. The show starts in 1934, so I looked through my NRA marked Lane Bryant catalogs and I see them, and the target customer the clothes were aiming to. Not women ashamed of their size, but wanted something that *was* their size, made to flatter their size. Not the constant notion of, 'You need to change to fit our clothes because smaller is overwhelmingly better,' that we get today.
I mean really, in the modern context of weight appearance, what we call fat is really what was fairly normal back in those times.
Take modern Lane Bryant for instance. Those current models are average weight, or straight sized. That is plus size today. So the fashion industry jumps from a size 2-4 to a 10-14 for plus. Wow. So if straight sizes are fat, what are fat sizes?
Look at this progression of Lane Bryant Catalogs.
See how ridiculous it all is?
I'm also not talking standards of beauty. Those change with each gust of the breeze.
We've gone from The Venus of Willendorf
to Ruben's Venus to Twiggy and beyond. Wow.
Acceptance of your body, which I know is not an easy thing to reach is empowering. But really, the older you get, don't you get more and more tired of standards that are applied on the wind? I know I do because I've never looked like the modern standards, but I do look like the oldest Venus (except I have feet and a face). If I had lived back then, I would have had the body of a goddess.
Naw, I'm cool with living now. I like deodorant. :)