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Sizing up fashion: women & the never-ending quest to find clothes that fit

07 July 2018 - 19:49 By TANYA FARBER
Women in South Africa 'find it hard to purchase anything without trying it on'.
Women in South Africa 'find it hard to purchase anything without trying it on'.
Image: Dan Meyer

Clothing sizes must be standardised to save women the trauma of being anything from a 10 to a 16, depending on which store they are in, say experts and consumers.

After measuring 30,000 women, UK retailers are devising a standard size chart, and University of South Africa consumer studies expert Josephine Kasambala said South Africa needed a local equivalent so it could move away from reliance on British, European and American systems.

Kasambala’s research found that women in South Africa “find it hard to purchase anything without trying it on”. Having to try on so many garments before heading to the tills “takes away the pleasure of shopping”.

Johannesburg nurse Nthabiseng Majara agreed, saying: “The same size is different in all the shops. Then you get the shop assistants always making excuses saying the clothes have a big cut or a small cut. It is so annoying.”

Sheri-Lee Carver-Brown, marketing manager of Donna (formerly Donna Claire), said the chain was moving away from the term “plus-size” and saying “fit for you”.

Read the full story in the Sunday Times – including what happened when we went shopping for trousers at the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town.

Read the full story in the Sunday Times.


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