Jeans

One issue that crops up when one is losing weight is what to do about one’s wardrobe as it needs replacing. It’s hard to stomach the idea of buying clothes that are essentially disposable if you know that you’re only going to be in them for a few months. Or, worse, you think you’re going to wear something for a short time, so you buy a cheap something that’s just fine but not 100% great, but then you end up wearing that cheap something for a few years because your weight loss stagnates.

A few years ago, I lost enough weight that my jeans were too big. So much so, in fact, that they slid right off my butt right in the middle of Target. (Hellooooo Housewares! How YOU doin’?) Figuring that I’d have just as much luck losing weight and getting to the next size down, I picked up some cheap jeans while I was there at Target. They were far too long — like 4 inches — so I just rolled them up rather than walk the excess length off. Why bother having them hemmed if I’m just going to be passing them on to someone else at some point in the very near future, amiright?

You know where this is going, yes?

I hit a plateau not long after that, induced mostly by the winter of 2009-2010 when we got 60 inches of snow in two months and I apparently spent much of my time in between shoveling snow eating foods in the au gratin and bacon food groups.

So I regained some weight and the cheap temporary jeans didn’t fit, but then I lost the regained weight, so the cheap temporary jeans fit again, but I still never got around to having them hemmed. Because, again, I was going to lose that weight quickly, so there was no point.

So here we are in the fall of 2011. The jeans fit fine, but I’m back on a losing streak, so to speak, and I am again hoping the jeans will soon be too big for me. In the meantime, however, I need jeans that fit. What self respecting soccer mom doesn’t have jeans for Saturday games?

I pulled the far-too-long jeans out of the drawer and started wearing them. Only, they’re still too long, as fairies did not magically appear in my house and hem all pants that are too long. (Which is nearly all of one’s pants when one is 5′ 4″.)

And that excess length annoyed me and annoyed me and annoyed me and irritated me and got on my nerves and annoyed me more. Finally, two weeks ago, I’d had enough. I had cuffed and recuffed those jeans far too many times.  And, much in the same way that a woman will grab her nail scissors at 10:00 one night and start hacking at her bangs in desperation, I grabbed bigger scissors and cut the excess length off my cheap temporary jeans.

(Only, there’s no way I’ll ever hack at my bangs with nail scissors or anything else because Richard the Hair God would kill me dead if I did something like that. At which point I’d have to I’d have to go into Witness Protection in order to hide from him and I’d up in some farming community in Idaho where I’d be the only blogger with fabulous accessories for a 13 county radius. So really it’s just best if I keep my cutting hands away from my hair.)

So where I am now is that I have jeans that are the correct length, but they’re cut off and fraying.

And this should be the point where I tell you that I’m embarrassed about my fraying jeans, but the fact is, I’m not. I simply don’t care. Because who’s going to give a crap about jeans that are worn to the soccer field or the grocery store or to pick up someone from fencing or take someone for a horseback riding lesson or to a casual lunch with a friend?

Well, okay, someone else might care, but I don’t.

What I am happy about is that the jeans are the correct effing length. Finally. After three years. It’s about damn time, I say. I should have cut them off years ago.

(Said jeans were worn yesterday with a fabulous navy blue henley from J. Crew that I got supermarkeddown, plus some red L.L. Bean driving mocs that were also supermarkeddown, as well as a fun scarf in bold colors of red, navy, golden yellow, and more.)

(What I’m saying is, there was no black involved with said outfit.)

Tell me I’m not alone in this. Who else has had a moment of utter desperation that might or might not have involved cutting jeans or hair or doing something else entirely?

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About Jen

Jen blogs at Jen on the Edge (jenontheedge.com). She lives in Virginia with her husband and two daughters. She is a recovering runner, an 80s music aficionado, a chocophile, and a bookworm.

21 thoughts on “Jeans

  1. Would love a referral to the Hair God as Richmond isn’t that far away – I still come to Cville for my dentist appointments! (When you find a dentist that has never hurt you, since high school, it’s worth the effort). But I digress…Love the outfit. Don’t worry about cut-off jeans. Seriously, have you seen the jeans out there – people PAY for jeans to look like they had a fight with their cat!
    My desperate actions usually involve hemming pants with duct tape until I can get to a tailor. I do not sew.

  2. Bradley loves me enough that when I can’t afford him to do my roots and do them myself, he only shakes his head a little. As for chopping my hair, I learned that a long time ago, the hard way. Mom got frustrated with my thick knotted hair and whacked it off. Only one side was longer than the other. It was pony tails for a very long time until we found Kathy, who wouldn’t let me do the stupid things I wanted to in high school.

    As for clothing, I have discovered the joy of yoga pants. And because I don’t care about my job any more, since the pants are black, I wear them to work when I want comfort. Plus they’re much easier to shop for than dress pants. I’m 5’5″ and always land between sizes.

  3. God help me but I have the same problem with a pair of jeans. Yes, going on three years, can only wear them with my black cowboy boots. Must get them to the tailor soon ’cause one of these days it will be cold enough to wear jeans and I will want these.
    Rock the frayed jeans, like Lori said, people pay for jeans to look like that.
    Never ever touch my hair with scissors, Sharon, the Hair Goddess, would laugh at me and who needs that?

  4. “all pants that are too long. (Which is nearly all of one’s pants when one is 5′ 4″.)”

    Because at our weight, we are supposed to be 5’9″. Jerk pants designers.

    I have had many hair tragedies, self imposed. Sad to say, they have been recent. Apparently, I do not learn from history.

  5. I had a favorite pair of jeans 20 years ago. They were skinny jeans and had a zipper down by the ankles so that they could fit very close to the body. (these jeans were very in back then, and I was the size of a twig) The fit perfectly until II started rollerblading, which I did every day. Within a few month my calves quickly got big and I could no longer wear the jeans and walk in them. It was also very difficult to sit down in the jeans because the jeans would pull my calves up like I was wearing a pushup bra. I didn’t want to give up the jeans so I cut them off a few inches below the knees and wore them with boots until my butt no long fit into them. When that happened, I cut the legs off and tried to make a 1970’s shoulder bag for my niece. She didn’t appreciate it.

  6. Your jeans are frayed, and you look fab. I want to make a joke about your nerves being frayed, but am failing to find funniness. Ryan would tell you that it’s no surprise. I fail at jokes often.

    But i digress.

    I think it’s totally a-ok. You got the job done! You’d think since I’ve started a business with hand-sewn products that I’d be great about doing my hemming and darning and other clothes alterations. But no, not at all. I recently hacked off several dresses and used iron on hem tape to hem them after having them stashed away for (ahem) 2 + years. It was time to put an end to the madness.

  7. I cut about a foot or more off a J. Crew dress from the consignment store once! It was hitting me at mid-calf at a time when I was very out of shape (and when I let myself go, a lot of fat goes to my calves). I looked…cankle-ish. The dress didn’t have a hem on it…it has fabric where the cotton simple rolls up at the bottom, so I figured, why not cut it? We were getting ready to go to dinner and I cut the dress to right above the knee, literally a minute before we left the house. I love it and still wear it – no one knows what I did!

  8. Am I really the only tall woman in your readers?! Now I know why pants with an inseam of 35 or 36 are so hard to find –apparently the rest of the world is not tall. At 5’10” I have never needed to hem a pair of pants. However, I would have really appreciate it if I could get some to grow.

    However, the bang thing? I used to do that all the time. I love not having bangs anymore!

  9. I do hack at my bangs – and with nail scissors, how did you know?

    However, I seem to be the last woman in the US with a sewing machine and the ability to use it! I sew my hems and the hems for my kids, too.

    I am in the position of having gotten rid of the clothes I wore as I lost weight, now I have gained some back and I am verrry limited wardrobe wise. So I am trying to get the numbers going down again on the scale so I can fit into all the fall clothes I have in the closet.

  10. Thank you for reminding me I need to fix a pair of jeans for hubby (bought at Sierra Trading Post – the front pockets are just…wrong. You can hardly get your hand in there much less anything else they’re so shallow.)

    And as others have said, it’s the style! (I don’t necessarily agree with said style, but it is what it is.) However, I’m guilty of wearing jeans looking similar to yours simply because I love them so much I can’t bear to part with them when they start to fray. Also, for future reference, iron on hem tape is your friend: hack 3/4 inch too long, then hem tape up for a finished edge. But with jeans make sure you get the heavy duty stuff.

    Now – can you convince my 4 year old the pants from last year are ready to go? Little boys do not wear capris.

  11. At least Jeans look OK cut off. It doesn’t work out as well with chinos. And cut off jeans are worlds better than home-hemmed jeans, unless you know someone who can do that hem that saves the original stiching. I think it’s called an LA hem, or a Paris hem. I have a bad habit of cutting off long skirts and rehemming them shorter. No matter how careful I am, it always looks homemade and unprofessional.

  12. Your cut off job looks awesome, I am impressed. My cut off job was not nearly so cool looking. I need a tailor who will pick up my clothes for me and accurately guess how much to take off. I end up with very junky hems on all of my pants. I agree the scarf is a great addition to that outfit.

  13. Hey, that is a pretty hot outfit. I like it.

    I’ve shaved my head before. Yeah, shaved. Not like bald, but it was about half an inch at the longest part. I hated it and wanted to die for the first 2 weeks but after that I loved it. So every summer I cut it down to about an inch, wanna die wanna die, and a few weeks later adore it. It’s a vicious cycle but it works out.

    Also, personally I love the look of fraying jeans. So there you go. I’m currently in the “too fat for a belt” phase of my life, but all my pants are very close to falling down, but I’m also too cheap to buy new ones. Maybe once I hit the next size down I’ll break down and get more. I love CJ Banks jeans, they last forEVER and fit well and are nice. But they are also $50 a pop, so I only buy a pair if i am desperate or if they are on a good sale. Preferably both.

  14. You look mighty fine. It would never even occur to me to wear a scarf with jeans: fancy, I’m not.
    I find thrift stores fill temporary clothing needs as you move through sizes. To some extent.

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