Plight of the Special Sized Shopper: Sale…What Sale?


The Spring/Summer merchandise sales are in full force right now…and anyone with a little bit of extra cash can score some nice stuff for pretty cheap…that is…unless you’re a special size.

I have perused the sale racks and online merchandise, but haven’t picked anything up this sale season…not because I couldn’t find anything I like, but because nothing in my size of any value ever made it to the sales.

Garments on the smallest and largest (and tall) side of the spectrum are always ordered in smaller amounts than “average” sizes, and in my experience, are usually the first to go. For this reason, they never make it to the sales racks, so frugal ladies who like to wait for the sales to pick up their seasonal wardrobes are out of luck if they require a special size.

I end up buying a lot of items I’m interested in at full retail price, and certainly not because I have extra money to throw away. I snatch things up and pay full retail because I know if I walk away from it, I’ll never see it in my size again. I’ve had too much heartache after walking away from something I really loved, only to never see it again, to pass anything up.

And it’s usually a good thing I snatch them up when I do. So many times I get the ol’ “that’s the last one in that size in the entire company” from sales associates, or see the smallest size disappear from the e-tailer website right after I make my order, verifying I just bought the last one.

Then, when I get it home, I almost always have to alter it, costing more money on top of the retail price. For this reason, I’ve been making less purchases, but more expensive ones. I figure, if I’m going to pay full price on something and add the cost of tailoring, it had better be of some sartorial significance, whether that be fabric content, construction, or design element.

In short…sales are just one big tease. I always get excited for them…but usually walk away empty handed. Special sized gals have got it tough!

Better get in on the new Fall merchandise while there are still small sizes to be had!

Is this the case for you other petite (and special sized) ladies out there?

13 Comments

  • Reply June 18, 2009

    Zoe

    It seems to hold true for the plus size as well, from reading those blogs.

    I've gotten to wear I buy anything that nearly fits. I sew, so I can do a lot of alterations myself (with a friend for pinning). It saves me money, and I get good deals.

  • Reply June 18, 2009

    Alterations Needed

    Hi Zoe!

    Yup, plus size and tall girls have the same issue. Being on any extreme of the height/weight spectrum is difficult when it comes to clothing.

    Sewing is an awesome skill to have! I need to improve my sewing skills, I just don't trust myself enough to make any alterations myself at this point. Maybe someday…

  • Reply June 19, 2009

    amanda

    I buy lots of things on sale! And that is why I have two huge closets of clothing that I rarely wear, don't really love, or like for that matter and they don't fit correctly! Skirts sagging down to my hips, and jackets with sleeves hanging, and seams hitting everywhere wrong!!! I must take your advice!

  • Reply June 19, 2009

    Anonymous

    Yes! I have the same experience! Totally frustrating. Just showed your post to a friend who has to listen to me singing this song and she just burst out laughing, because she has heard this, line for line so many times from me and has always been somewhat sceptical.

  • Reply June 19, 2009

    Anonymous

    I'm like Amanda…Or used to be. Now, I am a lot more picky about what I buy. Makes little sense to purchase things I won't be wearing, even if it "almost fits."

    -Y

  • Reply June 19, 2009

    Jackie

    Oh, yes! Such a headache! I feel the same way about the size 00P at Ann Taylor, which happens to be the ONLY thing that will fit right off the rack. I recently read that they are discontinuing them! What am I suppose to wear!? Not only that but I was laid off my job last weak so I'm afraid I can't grab them before I never see them again.

    And you know us petites, we hold on to our clothes FOREVER. They were perfect *sigh* I am very upset at this.

    Junior section, here I come (again).

  • Reply June 22, 2009

    Josh R

    As a 5'5" guy, I run into the same problem. While I'd love to see sales on huge overruns of men's small and extra-small clothes, I understand that clothing manufacturers ideally want to sell out of every size at full price.

    That said, they clearly are skewed way too far to the middle (and for men, the XXL sizes). If you're selling out of S and XS sizes instantly and the sales racks are always groaning under the weight of a ton of cut-rate Ls and XXLs that you just can't move — well, wouldn't it make sense to balance out the sizing production runs a little?

    I just don't get the logic. Seems like there are potentially more profits/less losses for clothing companies that rebalance their size portfolios…

  • Reply June 22, 2009

    Alterations Needed

    Hi Josh! It's interesting to hear a guy's perspective. I had no idea small sizes were elusive in the men's department as well.

    I don't quite understand the fashion industry when they claim the smallest and largest sizes never sell, as an excuse for why they don't order as many. I'd be curious to see their research data on this, because in my experience, it's always the middle sizes that I see go on sale (thus causing the company to lose money). Maybe it's a geographical thing?

  • Reply June 22, 2009

    Anonymous

    I think you might be right re: the geography factor. I was in Las Vegas last November and was blown away by the selection at the Nanette Lapore store in Caesar's Palace — lots of sizes 0-2, and at +50% off no less! I live in Seattle and it's virtually impossible to find attractive garments in those sizes even at regular prices, let alone on sale…

  • Reply April 6, 2010

    Anonymous

    I just discovered your blog the other day and have been devouring it. As a 4’7 (yes that’s not a typo), 74 lb, almost 32 year old, shopping has never been fun.

    This post especially got my attention. I was shopping in Express yesterday and found the cutest dress that almost fit me perfectly, which for me is as good as it gets. I had a coupon and was all tickled as I brought it up to the counter. Come to find out I was so excited that I didn't read the coupon correctly and the sale doesn't start for another few weeks. I reluctantly put the XXS fabulousness back and walked away.

    After shopping the mall for another two hours and finding absolutely nothing I finally bit the bullet and went back. I ran into the manager and asked her if the XXS would be the first to go. She said absolutely and felt so bad for me that she gave me $10 dollars off.

  • Reply April 6, 2010

    Alterations Needed

    Hi Anonymous!

    So glad you were able to get your dress, even if you couldn't use your coupon. That's amazing the manager gave you a discount. How nice of her! I've never had a manager be that kind to me! lol.

    I'm glad you're enjoying my blog! Thanks for the kind words. =)

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    Anonymous

    I just discovered your blog the other day and have been devouring it. As a 4’7 (yes that’s not a typo), 74 lb, almost 32 year old, shopping has never been fun.

    This post especially got my attention. I was shopping in Express yesterday and found the cutest dress that almost fit me perfectly, which for me is as good as it gets. I had a coupon and was all tickled as I brought it up to the counter. Come to find out I was so excited that I didn't read the coupon correctly and the sale doesn't start for another few weeks. I reluctantly put the XXS fabulousness back and walked away.

    After shopping the mall for another two hours and finding absolutely nothing I finally bit the bullet and went back. I ran into the manager and asked her if the XXS would be the first to go. She said absolutely and felt so bad for me that she gave me $10 dollars off.

  • Reply May 25, 2011

    amanda

    I buy lots of things on sale! And that is why I have two huge closets of clothing that I rarely wear, don't really love, or like for that matter and they don't fit correctly! Skirts sagging down to my hips, and jackets with sleeves hanging, and seams hitting everywhere wrong!!! I must take your advice!

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