Tuesday, May 3, 2011

The Fruit Bowl

Now, men may think that women over-analyze clothing and shop waaaaay too much/often, but really, gentlemen, you just have to get variations of the suit. The only patterns are pinstripe and solid. 

Give us females a little credit. 

We have suits, dresses, tops, bottoms. Dresses: wrap, sheath, jumper, with sleeves or without, empire, natural, and drop-waisted; Skirts: pencil, a-line, flairy, high waisted, low waisted, side zip, front zip, back zip; Tops: cropped, long, hip length, 3/4 length sleeve, wrist length sleeve, elbow length sleeve, button-down, pullover, cotton, wool, polyester, thin enough to require underlayer? Then a search for the underlayer and so forth. I haven't even mentioned shoes yet.

Men, I request that you do not mock the process.

In order to look one's best, analysis of the body type should be done, which is categorized as to where weight is usually stored. There are two basic fruits mentioned: 

1) Apple: after 5 pounds of matzah, my stomach protrudes. 
2) Pear: the 5 pounds go to the hips and the . . . ahem . . . derriere. 
As an apple, the best skirt style for me is the pencil. In times of post-Pesach weight crises, I wear a peplum jacket (awesome style for apples - the jacket flares out after the waist, hiding the boch) to camouflage the front territory. 
For the pears, "poofier" skirts are the better option—but they should not be worn with long tops. I have seen this style on pears, and can testify as to the perfection of suitability.
As for skirt length, the general consensus (even amongst the glossies such as Vogue) is for the hem to end right below the knee. Calf-length emphasizes the most unflattering area, and ankle length is fine for the weekday but I don't think is sharp enough for Shabbos or simchas.


Ish Yehudi said...

First, I wanted to thank you for this post -it's fascinating, and the apple/pair metaphor is absolute gold.

Mens' clothing may not have as many options and variations the same way womens' clothing does, but we have our own customizations.

Though many men don't bother, a great many of us do - I've got a couple slim suits which are more sporty and for a leaner, more athletic build. (I also have a couple straight-fall suits, which are more formal.) There are options of single/double breasted, 2/3/4 buttons, and the pockets, oh the pockets! And of course the choice of straight or pleated pant fronts, cuff or no pant cuff. So many, many options...

Not to talk of the types of pinstripes, the fabrics (though most are wool, there are quite a few fabrics and textures out there!), and even if a bachur only wears white shirts (being sefardi, I've got the luxury of branching out more), there are so many ties! Colors, patterns, wide/regular/skinny/thin, which should match the width of the suit jacket lapel (Which has no less than 3 styles and 3 widths that are now standard). And of course the newest trend coming in is visible stitching (by the edges of the jacket, particularly on the collar and lapel).

Just because many men don't engage in the process the same way women do, doesn't mean that such things don't exist for us men, or that all of us are impatient or ignorant about it :P

Princess Lea said...

I was ribbing the men out there a little. I shop for the men in my life (father and brothers) and I understand all the nuances to male wardrobe.

They dare not mock me, but there are men out there who regularly eye roll at female shopping. I just wanted to heighten their appreciation a little.

I can't take credit for the apple/pear thing. It seems to be common jargon of wardrobe "experts." Also doctors. Apples are more prone to health problems (woo-hoo).

Premonitions of an Afterthought said...

I did not read this post- and I'm gonna go back and read it in a minute- but I must post this comment before the day is over! And there's only 16 minutes left! HAPPY STAR WARS DAY! "May the Fourth Be With You!!" :-) K- NOW i'll go read the post! Looks like fun!

Premonitions of an Afterthought said...

I've noticed three basic frum girl body types. The apple, the pair, and the waif. Most frum girls fall into this category. I am the straight up and down girl who is 5"11. It always drove me nuts when frum stores, or other clothing manufacturers announced "our clothes are for REAL women, not women who are tall and thin" HEY im a REAL WOMAN TOO! And although most clothes do look good on me once i find them (long skirts, knee length, high waisted, low waisted, belted, etc) FINDING the clothes is almost impossible. I pretty much have five of the same thing in every color in my closet. Once i find something that fits and doesn't make me look like i outgrew my clothes...i keep it. in every color. then i bring it to the dressmaker. and copy it. in the rest of the color spectrum. Here's to real women of all body types! :-) great post!

Princess Lea said...

I'm 5'10", and I CANNOT find ANYTHING in frum stores. The skirts are just not long enough. If I find a pencil skirt that is long enough, I buy it, no matter how many more I have at home - soon they may go out of style for a decade and then I'll be stuck, so I stock up. If something stops looking sharp, I take to my seamstress to take it in. I own my stuff forever.

Yesterday was Star Wars Day? Man, I was remiss.

Anonymous said...

"I am an apple, I am an apple...Sometimes I am red and sometimes green..."

Anyone else know that song? From "Boruch learns his Brochos," or something like that?

Anyway, I am. Although sometimes (like after Pesach)I feel more like a watermelon. :)

Princess Lea said...

I only remember "The Mitzvah Tree" and "The Mitzvah Machine."

This Pesach I somehow emerged somewhat unscathed. I made a conscious decision not to sit down with an entire sponge cake (as has happened in the past) and not to mindlessly munch on matzah (no matter how much it pains me. I LOVE Kerestirer).

Anonymous said...

I also like Kerestirer, but Pupa-Tzeilem are even better! They are the thinnest matzos in existence.

Have you ever tried them?

Princess Lea said...

No, but some men were gushing about them on the train platform. I actually like my matzah to be thick - one year my mother found Williamsburg matzah or something like that - those were awesome. Thick, crunchy . . .

For most of my meals I ended up just groaning over matzah and butter while I ignored the paprikash. One can't ignore my mother's paprikash, and yet I was able to.