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body shapes, pear shaped, large hips, buying clothes for women with hipsWhenever I look into a floor-length mirror I see one thing – hips. You could say I have the “luck” of being tall (5’ 9) and weighing 130 pounds, depending on the scale. I might even be called “lanky” or “slim.” But long limbs or not, I’m pear shaped – small at the top and wide at the hips. As my mother once said, “It’s just how you’re built.” And even though I’ve learned how to dress my type – after fifty years, it’s still a challenge.

I’m practiced. I know how to emphasize the “good” parts: the collarbone, arms, small chest, legs. Scarves are always good. Trench length jackets. Boot cut pants. Tunics – oh, so many of them. But I’m still envious of my friends (a few of them) who look good in anything.

I have to hunt for clothes that fit. They can’t be too big on the top (I’m probably size 8) or too small on the bottom (I bet I’m a 12 or 14.) I’ve outgrown the “contemporary” sections of department stores and Lands’ End, Eileen Fisher and Chico’s don’t cut it – just not my style. I’m not buying St. John or Armani either, though I do love fashion. It just means I spend more time looking.

I find things. Though many boxes are sent back to Zappos, 6pm, Saks among others and most boutiques don’t have what I want, when the clothes fit, I’m happy.

But it’s not just about the clothes. We all have “hips.” They come in many shapes and sizes: fleshy upper arms, poofy midriffs, bulging thighs, breasts, too big or small, stocky legs, long or short torsos, barrel chests. It’s just “how we’re built.”

And it’s okay. Age has its gifts. I, for one, am more comfortable with what I got. The size, the shape, the way I am. There’s a little more ease and a little more acceptance with it all. And it’s good. Good enough.

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