Fat Duds

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Fat Duds    

When I shop for clothes, it’s easy to find my size; I just follow the path to indignity.  fatI am one of those robust gals who shops for “Women’s Sizes,” the department that is invariably found adjacent to the Petite Department or, worse, next to the maternity clothes.  It is painful for me to shop, big butt to little butt, next to the likes of Kelly Rippa and Barbie in the Petite Department.  And it’s just so darned tempting to shop in close proximity to the Maternity Department, where the clothes look so comfortable with all that elastic and ruching and pleats.  Believe me, maternity clothes are a lot trendier than anything you’ll find in the plus sizes.

I have some theories about designers of plus size clothes:

  1. They are skinny bitches who want you to know that no way, no how are you ever going to look as good as they domannequins.  We provide the ample bosoms, batwing arms, and heavy hips, and they’ll finish the job by designing spaghetti strapped tank tops, spandex leggings, and mini-skirts in plus sizes.  Unsuspecting fat women are tricked into thinking that they too can be cute in such fashions.  But they’re not cute, not cute at all.  You’ve seen these women, their bottoms spilling over bus seats, their cleavages suffocating small children.

  1. They are skinny chicks who don’t really associate with their larger sisters. Their concept of large women is shaped by the famously fleshy like Rosemary Clooney, Delta Burke, and Aunt Bea. When they design my clothes, they’re conjuring images of women who have antimacassars, many fat cats, and soft laps.  These designers mean well, they really do, but they have this notion that fat fashions should have rhinestones, kitty cat appliqués, large plaids, or daisies.  The chest of a t-shirt might be emblazoned with a bold statement, like “Rock Star,” or a pithy phrase, like “Live Each Day,” written in curlicue script.
  1. They are Democrats who have succumbed to the Obama Effect. Michelle Obama, that is, who ruined everything for women like me when she pranced into the Capitol for the State of the Union Address six years ago– in January— wearing a sleeveless dress.  Now everyone–actresses and news anchors and Kathy Lee Gifford–has skewed the entire seasonal dress code.  Suddenly bare arms are de rigueur year round, and those of us with upper appendages designed for cap sleeves and shrugs and sweater sets and shawls are now overexposed.
  1. They are heterosexual men. They are clueless.

I think I’m okay with the “Women” designation of my size.  There are “Juniors” and “Misses” and then “Women.”  Doesn’t being a “Woman” sound like a progression, all grown up and proud?  Even wearing a “Plus Size” doesn’t sound so bad.  I mean, on infomercials, it’s a good thing when the salesman says you get one 10-inch Ginsu knife PLUS a paring knife, a grater, and a cutting board, right?  But the googled definition of “plus size” is a bit ouchy:  noun.  an extra-large size category of clothing; a garment or person of this size.

So what would I like to find in the Big Girl Department?  Something realistic – tops that cover my wide bra straps; bottoms that conceal my generous bloomers.  Something tasteful—forget spandex and sleeveless; polka dots and kitty cats; skirts cut up to here and shirts cut down to there.  And something respectful of the women who have grown into this size—no horizontal stripes or Monet’s garden on the bum.  I challenge designers to find the dignity in our abundance.

Copyright © 2014 Sandy Lingo, All Rights Reserved



  1. Sandy, I love your writing style. Just flippant enough. Very clever and oh so true.

    • Thanks so much, Kathy! It’s wonderful to connect in this way.

  2. I love this. So true…but I could never have said it so well. Your blog is wonderful! YOU are wonderful!

  3. Love this! Keep it up!

  4. Love how you turn a phrase and love your audacity! Looking forward to more provocative prose. Thanks for writing and sharing, Sandy!

  5. Oh Sandy…your blog is so wonderful! Reminds me how much I. Miss those weds nights in circle together. And the design is beautiful!

    • Well, that’s just about the nicest thing anyone has ever said!

  6. It is amazing how anyone has the confidence to wear horizontal stripes and wide plaids. It isn’t just us odd-shaped women needing designs that make us look thinner and taller.

  7. Readbacks:

    …their cleavages suffocating small children.

    …skewed the entire seasonal dress code. Suddenly bare arms are de rigueur year round, and those of us with
    upper appendages designed for cap sleeves and shrugs and sweater sets and shawls are now overexposed.

    … challenge designers to find the dignity in our abundance.

    • Ohhhhhhhhh! I love readback lines! Thanks for taking the time to send me these.

    • I don’t know what “readback lines” are, but these are the exact three lines that made me laugh and made me think!

      • Readback lines are what you usually email me after I send you a piece–they’re the lines you especially like or that resonate with you. I always love your feedback.

  8. Sandy, not only did I read it, I HEARD you saying it…. And it made me smile

    • And now you made me smile!

  9. AMEN!

  10. Nice to know I’M not the only one who thinks these things when I shop in the Women’s dept. You SAY it so well! Thanks!

    • You have a retirement schedule, it would seem . . . go to bed when you’re tired and wake up when you’re not. Thanks for reading my blog.

  11. The unmistakable voice of Sandy Lingo–pithy, funny and weighted with truth.

  12. What a wonderful way to start my morning…..big mug of coffee and a chuckle with my favorite writer! Keep it up!

  13. I love your writing style, Sandy. I enjoyed reading this very much! I understand the allure of the maternity department as well (sigh)…

  14. Reading your blog is better than the morning newspaper. It puts a smile on my face.

  15. Thanks for saying what so many are thinking. I love your blog!

    • Why don’t you have a blog? Your 90 days of gratitude was brilliant, and I’ll bet you could post every day with things that would make people think and laugh and sigh.

  16. I always loved being in class with you so Icould hear your writing. This is great, like running into you unexpectedly, it makes me smile. Add the indignity of having to SHORTEN all those crazy clothes, it’s a bitch.

    • The problem I have is that the length is usually just exactly right, so I vow to wash everything in cold water and hang dry. But we all know that shrinkage is insidious, and they inevitably shrink–if not from the laundry, then between one season and the next, hanging in the closet. Thanks for reading my blog. We should meet and catch up.

  17. I love every ounce of your curves!! I’m cracking up!!! I’ve always wanted to design a “women’s” line!!! May have to get started!!!!

  18. You are too funny!

  19. As always a hoot of truth. I could hear you speak it. Missed you today.

  20. I really enjoy reading your blogs! Please note that us short but not skinny people get similar treatment in petites! So many “cute” designs for us short (not childish) girls. Thanks for writing!

  21. I just took time to read all the comments you have garnered and I come away with a renewed appreciation of your graciousness. Whenever someone compliments you, you pay it back. I just love this about you. No wonder so many people love you.

    • Back atcha.

  22. Have just discovered you on FB and love your writing. Loved the Grandpa Gil story, especially since my husband is now living some of those experiences. I write a few short story/devotionals and am always amazed at how the next story comes to mind by reading someone else’s stories. Thanks for making me smile.

    • Sue, thanks so much for your very kind comment. I am so glad you found me and I found you. Good luck on your writing. I am sorry you are dealing with issues related to Grandpa Gil’s story.


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Sandy Lingo

Life itself is the proper binge.  - Julia Child

A writing friend said that when she reads my writing, she always wants a second helping.



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