Oh, Size Charts

I went to Nordstrom the other day to try to take advantage of the half-yearly sale. Specifically I wanted to try on some jeans. It is very hard for me to find good-fitting jeans! Most jeans that fit my hips tend to gape in the back of the waist, because my waist is so much smaller than my hips. I have heard raves about “Not Your Daughter’s Jeans” from other curvy ladies: supposedly they have a much smaller waist than hip. So I decided to try them out.

Before going in, I looked at the size charts online. Based on those size charts, I was a 14-plus. I thought “Ok, these run really small” and didn’t worry about it. Pants size is just a number.

When I got to the store, I went to the plus section, pulled a bunch of 14-pluses, and went into the fitting room (contrary to my usual experience at Nordstrom, the SA was not at all interested in helping me, so I did all this by myself.)

Every pair was way too big. They just hung on me. I was surprised.

I went back down to regular sizes (the saleslady there had been a bit sour when she directed me up to plus, but when I came back she was nicer) and picked out several pairs of jeans in 14 and 16. I tried on a pair of 16s first and found that they were too loose, so I went right to the 14s. All of the jeans I tried were black, with the exception of a sort of faded/washed black pair in modern bootcut.

The modern boot cut in size 14 was a great fit, even a bit loose in the waist, in regular black, but the washed black ones were a little tight. I think they would stretch to be a good fit. The modern flares (which the SA insisted on giving me, though I asked only for boot cut) were a little too small, I had hangover. The classic boot cut was a good fit, but I like the silhouette of the modern better, especially as it seemed tighter around the hip.

The straight leg 14 was too small. Straight leg 16s were a good fit at the waist, but the leg was unflattering.

The size chart in this case seems to have no relation to the fit of the jeans. Supposedly the size 14 regular will only fit up to a 43 inch hip, but my 48 inch hips fit easily with room to spare in all but the straight legs. Thank goodness I had the opportunity to try them on, or I might have ended up with an oversized pair of jeans.

The SA warned me that these jeans have a high waist. I found the waist to be moderate: it fit right around my navel. Definitely not low-rise, but not really high either. A true high waist is too high for me, but these were alright.

However, the price. The PRICE! These are some fancy jeans. And totally out of my art-student price range. So, I am keeping my eyes peeled on eBay.

4 thoughts on “Oh, Size Charts

  1. Thanks for this review! I’ve been wanting to try these jeans too but was uncertain because of the sizing. I’d have to order them from abroad so no trying them on ahead of time either. I had some pretty good luck with Levi’s Supreme Curve jeans, although I can only seem to find them in low-rise and I really need at least mid-rise.

    FWIW, I’ve found with Levi’s that they run about 3 sizes smaller than their size chart (so I have a 32″ waist but I wear a size 29). Just out of curiosity, comparing your measurements to the size chart how much smaller do you think they run?

    • You’re welcome! I actually bought a pair on eBay last night, so I will have a more detailed review of the modern boot when they arrive.

      I think they run big, actually, compared to the size chart. (I think they are a standard 14 in general, compared to most of my other size 14s.) According to the size chart, a size 14 fits a 32 inch waist and a 42 inch hip. But I have a 35″ waist and a 48″ hip (my butt is very, very big) and I had no problem getting a size 14 onto my hips. The size 14 modern boot in the faded wash was a little tighter in the waist, but I think it will stretch, and it fit my hips fine.

      I am actually going to sell a pair of CK jeans you might be interested in. According to their size charts, I am a size 14, but not all of their size 14s fit me. These are a pair of gray boot cuts and they are adorable, but too small for me, sadly. They might fit you, I will measure the waist sometime this week.

  2. I’ve worn not your daughter’s jeans and they are OK, but a bit too high-waisted for me. I am very petite (5’1) so the waist band comes up to above my belly-button on me.
    My absolute favorite jeans of all time are PZI jeans. The are mid-rise and they work great for me and I have a really hard time buying jeans. When they fit my hips/butt, jeans are always too big in the waist. Not the PZI jeans! I have nothing but PZI jeans in my wardrobe. You can see a picture of me wearing them here https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150408835726155&set=a.10150408835326155.417334.336031586154&type=3&theater

    and the link to the PZI website

    Also I find that the PZI jeans are true to the size chart, so you can order what size would fit you based on the size chart. Good luck to you and I hope you can find some jeans that fit you well and that are within your budget!

    • I’m 5’3″ and have really tall hips, so maybe that’s where the extra few inches fit in 🙂 I am used to high-waisted jeans coming up to my actual waist, and since my natural waist is essentially right below my rib cage, that’s a problem. Compared to that the NYDJ seem ok. But I usually prefer lower.

      You look fabulous and now I want to try some PZI jeans! Thanks so much for the recommendation! The size chart is inconsistent, though: my natural waist isn’t below my navel, and neither are the models’ pictured! I think I would be a 14 in their sizes too though.

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