Fashion: The perfect fit


Feeling original? Kieran Murphy encourages you to try on a new way of thinking for clothes sizes

A perfect new year’s resolution would be to make the right choices when shopping and not just in the sales, but in general. Purchases in the sales are another problem of ill-fitting clothes. Normally, we would never dream the size XS T-shirt would fit us, but when it’s marked at 80 per cent off, we immediately think that control pants will solve everything and away we go.


How many items have you in your wardrobes that still have the bright red sales tags on them? Purchases like this inflate and bloat our closets to the point that they begin looking like a laundry room and we become overwhelmed.

Vanity, thy name is high street stores. Vanity sizing has taken its toll on the Irish nation allowing for ladies to be a sure-fire eight in Penneys, only to be shocked and appalled to find a ten barely fits them in BT2. Vanity sizing occurs when a store wants to satisfy customers’ wishes to appear thin and feel better about themselves, which means in the clothing industry, Penneys are lovely and BT2 are the mean girls.

Although the powers that be in the European Union have created a standardised sizing method for clothing, this is not yet in common practice. Ireland has adopted the UK method for sizes, but this is rarely followed by manufactures.

The importance of trying on clothes before buying them cannot be stressed enough. More often than not we put up with a slightly tight-fitting dress or pair of jeans, because we were foolish enough to not try them on and even more foolish to not exchange them when we discover they don’t fit.

Even if the person at the changing rooms is eyeing you up or seems unfriendly, suck it up and try it on. If you haven’t time to try it on, buy it, but make sure to keep the receipt and exchange it at the weekend.

Taking in clothes can help combat ill-fitting sizes. If an eight is too tight and a ten is too big, don’t be afraid to whip out the sewing machine and bring it in yourself. If you’re too wary, there are a number of dry cleaners that also offer to do adjustments and I’m sure there are some students out there who would love some practice for their home economics project.

It’s all about how good you feel. While it may feel better to be able to squeeze into that size ten, if you look better in the twelve, go for it. Beauty is not a number on a dress and remembering this will save your sanity as well as your look.