Monday, November 24, 2014

Tight Wars

There's not a lot I like about winter-the gloomy rain, the freezing cold, super short days, dangerous icy roads...the too tight tights. 

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 My battle with tights have been a struggle for me as long as I can remember. As someone who doesn't wear pants daily (I own exactly one pair of jeans that I use strictly for working with horses on the weekends), finding ways to keep myself warm during the winter is essential. For many girls in a similar situation, tights are usually the way to go, especially as they often come in a variety of warmer options such as fleece-lined and sweater knit. Perfect!

Except not.

I'm fully aware that I am not, nor will I ever be, an itty bitty petite woman. But without deluding myself, I like to think I run fairly average in size. That being said, I seem to have a horrendous time year after year in the battle of finding comfortable tights that don't make me feel like my midsection is being sawed in half.

I've tried it all. Sizing up one, or even two sizes. Cutting notches in the waist band. Opting for the supposed more stretchy sweater tights. Ignoring anything that says "control top". I've even tried wearing thigh high socks and pairing them with warm shorts under my skirts! Last year I was very excited to purchase a pair of the famous We Love Colors Microfiber tights that only seem to have amazing reviews online, especially from plus size wearers, about how comfortable they are. No dice. I ended up giving them to my sister instead. 

At this point I have about two dozen pairs of tights, all in varying shades of...solid black. That's it. I don't even bother purchasing any of the beautiful printed tights I constantly see on so many Lolita websites (or the drool-worthy ones that rest so temptingly in my fingertips when I visit the BtssB and AP shops in person), because I already know that despite their M-L size tags, they were intended to be worn by girls much smaller than I. 

A few months back I was so ecstatic to actually find a pair of XXL tights from Claire's-a pair of adorable, almost sheer black tights with little black velvet bows printed on them. I was well below the weight range listed on the back of the packaging, and I was thrilled to finally have a pair of tights in something other than plain black! But alas, I should have known. Even just attempting to slip one foot inside gave me a sinking feeling in my stomach, and by the time I finally managed to wriggle them on, I had never felt more ashamed of my size in my life. Clothes should never make you feel ashamed. I wore them less than an hour and trashed them the second I took them off.

I admit, it's depressing. And after so many wasted dollars on brands that inevitable make me feel like a beached whale, I'm nearing the point where I'm feeling ready to drop $50 on a single pair from Falke or Wolford, just to finally have a pair that won't cause stuffed sausage syndrome. Still, their selection of cute prints is extremely limited, and I can't help but still yearn to cover my legs in adorable little roses or an elegant, lacy pattern.

But, I'm writing this as a ray of hope. I have not given up yet. Last week, knowing my plight and desire for comfortable, adorable printed tights, my fiance surprised me with a pair of gray, heart printed tights from the brand Chinese Laundry. I was hesitant. Nervous. Scared I would once again feel that gnawing sensation in the pit of my stomach that I would be, as usual, too big to look cute. But with his persuasion, I tried them on.

Would you know it...they fit. I fit. They're beautiful, and comfortable and stretchy. I can move and dance and BREATHE in them. I literally have to do everything in my willpower not to run to the nearest store and purchase every single piece of Chinese Laundry clothing they sell.

Maybe other girls don't experience this type of struggle, or perhaps my midsection is just particularly sensitive to pressure. I don't know. But with this one pair of adorable, wonderful, not-too-tight tights, my determination has been rekindled. I will wear lovely tights this winter, and I will feel beautiful in them. The tights may have one the battles before, but now the tides have turned. Change is in the air and now, it's my turn.

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