I feel more comfortable wearing baggy clothing.  Not necessarily ill-fitting clothes – just loose.

I thought I’d read that wide-legged trousers were have a moment – possibly in the guise of culottes but nonetheless wide and trousers.  At a social gathering this weekend I noticed that all but one of people I was with were wearing some form of skinny jeans.  Some more skinny than others but all very fitted close to the body.  My mother’s words echo in my ears – I think it was about wearing pyjamas in bed and how it restricted the flow of air to the groin and increased the risk of infection.  I hear that every time I see tight skinny jeans.  So be warned, if I see you wearing tight trousers I’m probably thinking about yeast infections!

I welcomed the news that baggy trousers were going to have their moment but unfortunately I am still waiting for it to happen – at least in the circles I move in.  I was looking forward to a fashion trend that I could get on board with and feel relatively comfortable in.

There is something about wearing tight-fitting clothing that makes be feel slightly anxious. How do you breathe, won’t the fabric feel rough against your skin, where does the sweat go?

I suppose I am also ashamed of my body.  Who wouldn’t be when it doesn’t match with society norms and hasn’t for well over 50 years.   I sometimes wonder that if I was the same shape, but thin, would I feel the same way about tight clothing, plunging necklines and short skirts.  Who knows?  I never will.

Body positive and fat activist bloggers, as well as fatshion retail sites, provide me with alternative views to those of the mainstream fashion world but I’m often disappointed by the styles on offer.  The bloggers are usually younger women with a bust and hips and a traditional hourglass body shape.  Bodycon dresses are everywhere,  as are high-waist skirts and fitted shirts and blouses.  I enjoy looking at these images but would struggle to wear anything similar.  It is all too closely fitted.  I suppose I would get over the shock of seeing my visible belly line or watching my minimal bust compete with my spare tyre.  But what about having all that fabric so close to the skin?   I can’t bear the idea of having something against my flesh that restricts my movement and makes me aware of its presence every time I inhale.

So I like baggy clothing.  I suppose it started as a means to ‘hide’ my body and cover rolls of fat but has become  a way of life for me now.  I prefer fabrics to skim and move, to breathe and forgive.  I realise I have limited experience of the alternative and acknowledge that my discomfort might be more intellectual than physical.

Now I’ve retired, and have no need to dress in a business casual way for work, I am embracing my baggy persona.  Forgiving and flexible or loose and shapeless.     I don’t care how it is interpreted.  I’m comfortable.

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