Posts tagged ‘shopping’

Buying Jeans

Ask any group of 10 women (who like to go shopping) what their least favorite clothing item to shop for is, and I bet at least 5 of them say jeans. At least.

Jeans are supposed to be the American casual uniform, the thing we get to wear as a treat in the office, everybody’s favorite. I call Shenanigans! I propose that jeans are not and will never be as comfortable as slacks, shorts, skorts, skirts, or dresses.

I’m not saying I don’t like jeans. But let’s stop pretending that they’re the ultimate in comfort-wear. And let’s agree that classic-fit-straight-leg-boot-cut-flare-bell-bottom-slim-skinny-boyfriend-carpenter-indigo-dark-stonewash-mediumwash-cleanwash-beachwash-mysterywash-distressed-518-524-535-low-rise-mid-rise-at-waist-high-rise sizing, styling, and fit defy explanation.

The word “Shopping!” for me is usually said with some level of glee comparable to “I just found a twenty in my old coat pocket!” or “It’s my Birthday!” On the other hand, “Shopping for jeans” sounds more like “The dentist says I need three fillings” or “The funeral is at 10:00.”

Shopping for jeans means trying things on beneath bad fluorescent lighting in front of what might as well be a fun-house mirror for all the reality, good or bad, it will reflect; wasting hours and big wads of cash; grinding self-esteem; wandering among teetering stacks of badly folded denim in which scientists calculate that 1 in 1,000 will fit correctly but may or may not turn out to have a great big, ridiculously goofy anchor embroidered on the butt, which you will only discover at home about 5 seconds before your date rings the doorbell.

Aside from a brief period of time in the 90s when I found a brand and style that fit me perfectly, in a material that was comfy, in a shade of blue that was just right, in a line that was soon discontinued, I’ve been in search of the right jeans for about 30 years. Thin and fat, unable or able-but-unwilling to spend a lot of money on jeans, name any department store, it has never gone well.

This week, I had an idea.

Parking was a breeze and I found a spot right near the door. I strolled to a long rack of jeans. Tick-tick-tick-tick-tick and I was walking to the register–where there was no line–with an armful of jeans. I spent a total of $24. The clerk was quick and genuinely friendly. I tried the jeans on in the comfort of my own home. And I ended up with two pairs that fit great.

And, really, except for me noting it here, you’d never know they came from Goodwill.

November 11, 2011 at 10:15 am 4 comments


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