This section of my website used to be dedicated to triathlon training, personal race results and certification reviews, like Turbo Kick. I am expanding it to include more generic health & fitness topics. Also, I talk a lot about "D" -- he's my husband (Dave Liu)!

Thursday, May 29, 2003

Do I Look Fat in This?

I previously wrote in my regular blog that I don't like shopping. That's still true, and I want to elaborate on why it takes so long to try on clothes: as the Wall Street Journal (subscription may be required) highlighted today: sizes are inconsistent across brands, "The numbers on the labels are increasingly meaningless as designers and retailers play to vanity and their own customer demographics in determining the length of an inseam and width of a waistline." Therefore, enter "SizeUSA", the "first-ever American 'sizing census' ".

I thought the goal of SizeUSA would be to come up with a "uniform sizing scale", so that I could walk into any store, buy a size [insert number here], and know that it would fit. Instead, they're trying to build a massive database with all this info, and give retailers (paid) access so they can slice and dice the data however they want to come up with "better-fitting attire for specific markets".

"For example, a hosiery maker could pull out data related to the 11 measurements taken around the feet and ankles to design better socks. A jeans maker could construct more comfortable jeans by examining the waist-to-hip ratio, which TC2 says is getting bigger. A dress manufacturer could better determine the age at which a body starts to become more prominently pear-shaped. Manufacturers will compare the data to their current measurements and determine if they should start making clothing a little bigger or longer."

Levi's used this concept a while back. Crystal first told me about this: apparently, based on a huge study, they're now able to recommend jeans that fit the wearer perfectly by taking only a few (around 6?) measurements. I like the idea of wearing clothes that fit better, and came up with another way of making my (existing) clothes look more flattering on me: diet and exericse. No kidding. It works. But seriously, despite my anti-shopping stance, I would pay a premium for purchasing certain things for a custom fit: SHOES.

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