Ha-ha! I just like how that sounds. So, I have been searching for the perfect replacement for my beloved denim lite jeans from Avenue since I found out they were discontinued way back when. My brick and mortar store options are more plentiful than many other places around the world, yet at my size this still was a difficult task to accomplish. I realized in all of this, though, that there is no perfect pair of jeans out there for me right now. But there are lots of other options for pants for fat asses and I was delighted by what I found.
Okay, so I only really went to a few stores and my main focus was denim. What I ended up with is more an assortment and a variety of what just worked for me in terms of fit but also somewhat in style. I say somewhat because I think I’m in a style transition at the moment and who knows where it’ll lead me. It’s fun and exciting and often hilarious!
This all became necessary and possible because of my new job. I’m not out of the woods yet, financially speaking, but I feel that everything is heading in the right direction and admittedly I took a risk by going shopping for clothing with my credit card. This is a major privilege, I know this and I want to recognize how conflicted I feel about this, too. It’s bringing up a lot of guilt and feeling selfish and wanting to fit in, too. All of that sucks. I did try to make what I had work but my old jeans literally fall off my ass now and my new job is far too physically active to be yanking my waistband up constantly.
I was so excited for this past weekend to come because I was supposed to go to the local Rennaisance Faire with my bff and bf. Bff woke up with a migraine and had to cancel. When my bf got to my place we went to get coffee before deciding what we should do that day. I was game for anything, really, and have been to the Ren Faire enough times to not really care much either way about going. So, genius boyfriend said, “Let’s go to that mall you mentioned and go shopping.” *BigGrin* (The grin was on both our faces).
I hadn’t been to that mall in ages, but I did mention to him awhile back that it had a Torrid which would be my favorite mall type of shop. We’d been to this other mall a few times and he was always perplexed by my lack of interest in any actual shopping at all. I tried at first to explain it away with, “Oh, I’ve worked in malls for ages so it’s just not that interesting, sorry.” but that wasn’t quite the whole picture, was it? No, you know as well as I do that a fat girl in a mall has few options. So I did finally explain to him about those options and what that means and feels like for me. He got it.
To Oakridge mall in San Jose we went and I really didn’t know what the day would bring. We first got our bearings and walked around a bit but then, oh right there! I see it! It’s right there…Torrid!!! I got a bit excited, I think he noticed the sudden change in my demeanor, too. It was all I could do to not ditch him in the thoroughfare and literally run inside! Right when I walked in I saw about ten things I wanted. But I went to this location because they get clearance stuff from other local stores, so I knew better than to get too excited up front. I briefly parused this area and ventured quickly towards the back of the store.
Luckily everything was well organized by size and I planted myself in front of the 4′s and began my search. Denim, colored denim, jeggings, skinnies, stiletto skinnies, curvy cut, bootleg…My mind was swirling. I grabbed a couple of pants and then a top and then this fab dress with skulls on it (it’s pretty, I’ll post pics soon) and then they offered to start a dressing room for me. Nice! At Avenue I nearly had to light myself on fire to get a fitting room! Ahem. Then I finally asked if they had classic cut, straight leg jeans. The girl said no but suggested I try the curvy cut jeans and so I did. Trying on 10 pairs of pants is hard work, yo! Ha-ha! I was a bit winded after all of that.
What I ended up with was a bunch of pants in all different cuts and fabrics and styles. Who knew?! I got a pair of stiletto skinnies in dark blue with this paisley print on them (wearing them today, love them) they have zippers at the side of the ankles (so 90′s!!!). I got a pair of very black pants, softish material, not denim, with skulls printed on them (black on black, looks rad!). I got the curvy cut jeans (in a 28 Regular, the short was a bit too light in color for me) in a dark wash, too. I got the dress with skulls on it, of course! As well as a t-shirt, a cardigan, a strapless top and a blazer and a henley (I’ll be returning the henley -it’s see through- when I pick up the teal and black striped blazer when it arrives).
I hadn’t been in a Torrid in over five years! Not only that, even when I did shop there and had the money to do so, their stuff rarely fit me. I don’t know what’s changed, my body or their sizing, but everything fit and the styles were more varied than I remembered. There was only one pair of pants that didn’t actually fit (wouldn’t pull up my thighs), but the ones I didn’t buy were merely because of personal preference. Then as I was asking more obnoxious questions and getting some things price checked and ordering that blazer, a customer asked me if I had a coupon. When I said no, she handed me a $50 off $150 purchase coupon. I was so surprised and touched and grateful I insisted she give me her name and I wrote down my blog url and told her I’d thank her for her generosity. So…
THANK YOU STACEY! You rock! I hope you found a bunch of cute and awesome stuff, too! *Hugs*
How cool is that?!?! Not only did I get the $50 off, but all of the clearance was buy one get one half off! Nuts! And all the tops were 30% off as well. PLUS they were doing the Haute Cash thing and so I will have $75 off of $150 in a couple of weeks. My boyfriend was beyond patient and sort of in awe of my bargain hunting abilities. “You’re quite good at that coupon stuff, aren’t you?” he said with an adorable smirk. I also updated my info with Torrid and signed up for their calling list so that they will call me when the Haute Cash can be spent or any other major promotions are happening. Okay, AND because I wanted to be sure to get that annual birthday discount they send you.
I was giddy and nearly jumping up and down as we walked out of Torrid. We ventured through and around Target where we both bought CDs. You know, the kind with music (I got the new Janelle Monae, he got the 20th anniversary edition of Nirvana’s In Utero). Then we popped over to the cinema in the mall and watched Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2. SO cute!!!! I loved it and I didn’t even see the first one. Then we grabbed some lunch at Denny’s because it’s his favorite and I find that hilarious.
When I got home I realized that I am now the proud owner of six new pairs of pants. All of two required hemming and that amount of hemming would be extremely difficult for me. So, I hit up my local alterations place and while it was a bit pricey ($13 a pair) I think in the end it’ll be worth it. I would have stressed myself out completely, probably cried and possibly ruined my new pants. I pick them up Wednesday night and hopefully will be happy as heck with my new pants in the appropriate lengths. Ha! I’d gotten two pair of sort of cargo pants from Avenue last week as well as a sweet pair of black chinos with a split cuff (perfect length, too). I returned the awful jeggings I’d gotten there, too. Ugh! Those were terrible.
I will say that Avenue’s Butter Denim ($60 reg. price) seemed awesome, but they never had a 28 or 30 for me to try on. They insist they come in those sizes but that they are in such demand that they never stay on the rack for more than a day. My personal past experiences with Avenue tell me this is bullshit and lies, but the girls at my local shop insisted it was true. At $60 a pair (though they do have a buy one get one half off deal on all of their stuff -except clearance) I just couldn’t quite bet on it after getting so much awesome stuff and service at Torrid.
Can we get real here for a minute? The service I receive in a clothing store greatly influences how I feel about a.) my experience in that store that day b.) what I end up buying that day c.) how I feel about that company. Comparing my recent experiences in Torrid and Avenue? There’s no question that Torrid is doing things right. I was spoken to like a valued customer, but a person, too. In Avenue I got a scripted/half-hearted greeting and was then ignored and had to wait a long time for a fitting room or to ask a question (it was not crowded or short staffed, mind you). Torrid provided a more personal experience over all. I had two women helping me throughout my visit and they kept in good communication with each other to ensure all of their customers were helped and happy (they had a lot more customers).
I just want to be treated with some respect and kindness. I don’t think that’s asking too much. Well, I know it’s not, but these days that isn’t the norm, sadly. When you consider how much I spent at each store? The numbers speak for themselves!!! And I already have plans to visit Torrid two or three more times in the next two months! That is some amazing retail mojo, folks. I worked retail for ten years, I know the rules and the games and I rarely “fall for” them. But these women at Torrid were real and straight with me. The women at Avenue didn’t seem to care at all and when I complained about things they had five excuses about how it was my fault or something. Ugh! No thanks.
I am so excited about all of my new duds! I feel like it’s back to school time. Today I’m wearing the stiletto skinnies with a hot pink plaid (with black and white in it) strapless top with a black cardigan and hot pink converse. I look adorable and SO 90′s!!! I love it! I looked at myself in the mirror this morning and thought to myself, “This looks like something I could have worn in high school! Ha-ha! And I would have been hot shit in it, too! Oh yeah!” and smiled my way out the door! I secretly love how these stiletto skinny jeans feel. I feel kind of hot and sassy in them.
AND they totally reminded me of the jeans I lived in when I was in Junior high and high school! You remember the ones that were tight with the zipper in the back (no pockets) and zippers and bows at the back of the ankles?!?! I loved those things! I remember getting my first pair from my bff Summer for my b-day in 7th grade. She also gave me a t-shirt with neon green hands on it that read, “You can’t touch this!” Ha-ha! Hey, I’m about to turn 36 in October and I’m damn pleased with that.
I am feeling excited about fashion again! This is so fun! I missed this feeling. And please, don’t get me wrong. I have a great wardrobe of dresses and teggings and doc martens and will never be without a stitch to wear, for sure. But I needed “play/work” clothes and my job has a lot of leeway in their dress code and I wanted to be comfortable and look somewhat professional…even if it is hella 90′s!
The fatshion pics will most certainly happen soon, but it may end up being a trickling in sort of thing. Why can’t I just have a personal photographer follow me everywhere?!?! Ugh! Ha-ha! I’ll do what I can with what I got right now and see how that works. I cannot wait to show you what I come up with in styling these new things. That’s the fun part for me, I think. Adding my own touch and flare and flavor. I always have something funky going on with my outfits. I hope I don’t disappoint!
Rad Fatty Love to you ALL!