Growing up, I cannot remember a time when I was uncomfortable with my height. I have always been active and involved in sports. My height always came as an advantage. I was a swimmer, ballerina, and most recently a professional volleyball player. Not a day has passed without me hearing, “What sport do you play,” or, “WOW, how tall are you?!” I have come to accept that my height is in every inch a part of who I am.
I was a “normal tall” girl. You know, only a couple inches taller than everyone that was considered average. Then I went away for a summer dance workshop in New York and during my time there, my whole body changed. I had a major growth spurt in a matter of months. I arrived in New York at 5’7 and left at 6’ tall. I felt no different but all my clothes looked like they shrank in the washing machine. That was when I truly grew out of the “long/tall” labeling in clothing brands.
Today I stand at 6’3, have an athletic curvy build, and I am only one of many women who can’t for the life of me go to store and leave with an outfit that fits. I love the shift that fashion is taking in diversity and speaking to women of all sizes; but speaking to “all sizes” is an overstatement.
How come my size is left out? We are allowed to be tall, and we are allowed to have curves, but we are not allowed to be tall and curvy at the same time.
As a teen, I had so few options of dressing. If I wanted to have pants that fit, I had to shop at the Tall section of the more mature woman department which were often untrendy. I constantly was put in the spare uniform clothes at my school which happened to be boy’s clothes that were a size or two too big because I was told my skirts and shorts were too short. My skirt and shorts were the same brand and style as many of the other girls.
There is an entire clan of women being left out, and that would be all my ladies over 6 feet. Sure, labels are making sizes in “talls” but let’s be real, those sizes are for the women who are 5’9. Yes, back in the day 5’9 was tall but these days women are growing taller and taller and still want to look fashion forward and have a style to claim as our own. We may be rare but we still exist. I have plenty of tall stunning friends, some of whom are taller than me.
Fashion is fun, and women in fashion are breaking down barriers. I want to be a part of a movement for women changing the fashion industry. It is becoming more common to see a woman over 6 feet tall. Why isn’t it becoming more common to see clothing that fits us? Did you see the Olympics? The Olympics was full of tall athletic curvy women. On so many sport teams there were women over 6 feet.
Believe me I took a mental note.
I want to look up and see a woman that represents my body type in clothes straight off the rack, so I can buy them too, not online only to be disappointed that the “longs” were not as long as I thought they’d be. Our bodies aren’t cookie cutter. We bend, we curve, we ripple and are fluid bodies of movement that deserve clothing that make us feel like goddesses in our tall stature.
I don’t see how a simple lack in options should make us feel the opposite.