When you're this tall, no one stocks pants for you.
Picture this: You’re going to the shopping mall with your friends. You walk into Odel, a super typical, everyday store where most women in their early 20s can find affordable, decently cute outfits. There, taking up the back third of the store, is the petite section.
Your short friends rejoice, heading there immediately. Jeans in shorter lengths! Shirts in smaller sizes! Hallelujah, praise the petites!
You look down — I mean, literally down toward the floor, because you’re 6-foot-2 — and suddenly have the urge to actually step on your friends.
That’s my life.
I’m tall, and I don’t mean Taylor Swift tall. I mean tall, like random people in the grocery store line think it’s perfectly acceptable to ask me if I play basketball (no). The rowing coach at my college practically harassed me into joining and I had to calmly promise her that long arms do not necessarily translate to athletic ability. I own one pair of high heels, and they’re about as fresh as they were when I bought them five years ago.
Being tall has its perks, sure, but it also has a major downfall: buying clothes is practically impossible. When you’re such an abnormal height, it just doesn’t make financial sense for most stores to cater to you. There’s no “tall” section chilling in the back of Cotton Collection. But hey, if you’re petite, the world’s your short little oyster.
As a girl with a more minimalist sense of fashion, I was completely screwed when I ripped a pair of jeans in college. It was one of those rips where your underwear is on full display and there’s nothing to do but chuck the jeans in the crash. The problem was, I only had one other pair of jeans. I needed another pair, and I needed them ASAP.
“Don’t worry!” the perky Odel salesgirl told me. “We carry jeans in long!“
If by long she meant longer than bermuda shorts, sure. But every pair was still an unflattering high-water length. Pile after pile, I almost felt bad for the poor girl, who kept insisting that surely they had something that would be long enough!
Four stores later, I overnighted a pair online. At the end of the day, I always spend more time and money (and effort) on finding suitably clothes than my medium-to-short friends.
Sure, jeans are hard to find. But so is anything with long sleeves. Or shirts with a long enough torso so that you don’t look like you’re stuck in a Britney Spears video circa 1998. I buy 97 percent of my clothes online, which means shipping costs, and that’s on top of the fact that clothes made in tall fit almost always cost more.
I get it — more fabric is needed — but it still makes me want to roll my eyes. . Shopping just isn’t that fun when you know you can’t actually buy things in regular stores. Shorter people can usually just snatch something up and make it work, but tall girls are forced to either put up with the boxiness of extra-large or just drop more money on a pricier store. Don’t even get me started on more formal occasions. Imagine having to tack on an extra Rs. 7500 to every bridesmaid dress, just to get the extra length!
People just don’t understand the plight of the tall girl. “Models are tall,” people tell me excitedly. “I mean, Karlie Kloss is 6-foot-1!” I just stare at them. Karlie Kloss also spends her weekends at Taylor Swift’s mansion and has Carolina Herrera on speed dial. There are many, many differences between Karlie Kloss and me.
At the end of the day, tall girls are like anyone else. We want clothes that flatter our body type, and we don’t want to spend a fortune. So, to all of the stores out there with overflowing normal and petite sections and a lack of anything made for a girl who can actually reach the top shelf, I beg of you: Help a vertically blessed consumer out and make me some jeans, already.
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