Aug 13, 2015 - Things to Do

The best way to dress my hard-to-flatter body: Hire someone else to do it

I pay someone to choose new clothes for me. And no, I’m not proud of this. I’m especially not proud of this since Katie Levans is doing the exact opposite by only buying her clothes from thrift shops for a freaking year.

She’s helping her wallet and the environment. I’m hurting my wallet, the environment and basically everything around me.

Don’t get me wrong; I want to shop like Katie. But I’d like to argue that girls of a thicker stature would have a hard time finding flattering clothes at only secondhand stores.

Example: A girl named… let me pick an arbitrary name here… “Katie” tries on a top at J.T. Posh, an adorable consignment boutique. It’s a medium and a little too big but that’s ok because she can tailor it to fit her perfectly.

Another girl, let’s call her… “Mary,” tries on the same medium top. It’s too small and she looks a little bit like a Vienna sausage. Unfortunately, she can’t tailor it because adding fabric is much harder than taking it away.

“Katie” has her choice of XS-XL clothing because she can tailor it down. Mary can only choose clothing from the XL category. See my point?

By the way, I don’t mean to pick on Katie; I have a lot of hot friends. (In fact, I wish I had less.) And all of them can find flattering outfits in places that I never have luck: consignment stores, Target and the sales section of Forever 21.

I have to be a lot pickier. My body needs thicker fabrics, a defined waistline and, when applicable, built-in Spanx. There’s nothing like not having to suck in all night because your outfit is doing it for you. My high-maintenance clothing needs are hard to meet in regular stores, let alone secondhand ones.

So to address my clothing issues, I enlisted a personal stylist to dress my hard-to-fit body.

stitch fix website

The site is called Stitch Fix. It pairs you with an online personal stylist that sends you five pieces according to your style and fit preferences.

Here’s how it works:

stitch fix online order

You set up an account and fill out a bunch of information about yourself.

You choose your body type, style and how much you prefer to spend on your clothes. My body type didn’t fit into any of their categories so I made up my own: athletic apple.

stitch fix profile

TIP: I didn’t want them to send me shoes or jewelry so I opted out of these in the “Should we avoid any of these accessory categories in your shipments?” section. Bracelets are great but they don’t make you look skinny.

Next, you simply pick a date that you want your Fix, pay a $20 styling fee and wait patiently.

stitch fix style card

Agenda Pro Tip: If you were that kid who rummaged through Mom’s closet looking for your birthday presents, then you’ll love this. You can ruin the surprise and look-up what Stitch Fix is sending you before it arrives. Just click “Check-out” while logged in and Google the names of the items listed.

mary gross stitch fix black top

Once you receive your order (I swear it’s like Christmas morning) it’s time to decide what you want to keep and what you want to send back. They even give you a style card to show you how you can wear each piece.

black lace detail
mary gross stitch fix patterned pants

If you keep at least one item, the $20 styling fee goes towards that item. If you keep all five items, you get 25% off everything. The only real risk is that you’ll forfeit your $20 if you happen to hate everything and send it all back. (This has never happened to me.)

Here’s an example of one of my Fixes. My stylist’s name is Jessica (I always request her) and she’s so good at dressing my body that I want to kiss her on the lips.

patterned pants
mary gross stitch fix poe dress

Layda Crochet Top – $58.00

mary gross stitch fix Amandine Printed Dress

I like this top. It’s kind of girly but I decided to keep it because I need to stop wearing Bojangles’ t-shirts every day.

mary gross stitch fix dress

Emer Printed Straight Leg Pant $98.00

mary gross stitch fix Kristah Ruffle Knit Blazer

Don’t make fun of me but I freaking love these pants.

stitch fix box

They come up high on my stomach so I don’t have to worry about feeling fat when I go to Mama Ricotta’s and stuff my face with cheese ravioli. I sent them back and asked for a “less colorful” pair in my next Fix.

Poe Dress $118.00

Just… no. I am officially the dumpiest person in Charlotte in this dress. Jessica is allowed one hard miss and this is it.

Amandine Printed Dress $138.00

Holy crap I just went from being the dumpiest person in Charlotte to the 2 hottest person in Charlotte (second only to Ted Williams). This faux wrap dress is super flattering and great for girls with more booty than boobs. It’s expensive but I’m going to wear it to every wedding I go to for the next six years and then maybe even my own.

Yeah, I took a lot of pictures in this one. I’ll spare you from scrolling through the other 32.

Kristah Ruffle Knit Blazer $78.00

Cute, but when I buttoned the front it looked like the poor button was holding on for dear life. Not a good look.

I consider this Fix a success. I ended up with two flattering items that I would have never picked out on my own. Sure, I spent way more than Katie would have in a secondhand store. But that’s ok; I’m willing to pay more for items that make me feel confident.

For now, Stitch Fix is my resource for finding flattering clothes. But, mark my words; the minute Goodwill opens up a built-in Spanx section I swear I’m turning into a thrifty shopper just like Katie.


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