27 Jan
One Size Cannot Fit All

Petite doesn’t mean tiny in the fashion industry; it means short. Petite clothes are designed for people shorter than 5’4” in height. I try to explain to salespeople that a jacket that fits shorter in the waist still won’t likely fit me unless it is from a petite collection. It may be huge in the armhole, wide in the shoulder, or 2 inches too long between the waist and the neck. At 5’1”, I often need the help of Mari, my sewing magician, even when I buy petite clothes. 

As I get older, I find I sew less, but being able to sew helps me see possibilities in clothing I try on. Meeting Mari, a fabulous tailor, has opened up possibilities. She is also good at telling me when something won’t work. I miss talking fashion with her when I have nothing to alter. I accumulate articles of clothing that need remodelling. When I reach four items, I pay a visit to Mari’s Sewing. 

She willingly helped me with a vision I had for a cut-velvet dress that I purchased on sale. I was sure she could cut out the sleeves and pull the entire bodice up into place. I thought that since the zipper was under the arm and not up the back, changing the garment would be a piece of cake. I now realize Mari had to create a new neckline and recut armholes, which is as much work as making a new dress. Mari and I are pleased to report that the dress is a perfect fit. I will share a photo at a later date.

During the pandemic isolation, I have shopped less and sorted more. I dress every day as if I have somewhere to go. My mental health depends on it. I have tried on clothes and found good items that need fitting or recycling. I have made t-shirts out of dresses. I have given away anything that wasn’t a good colour for me. I am not done yet, because my summer items are still tucked away. This is good because the pandemic isn’t done yet either. 

I am distraught at the abundance of loungewear being launched lately and the lack of more tailored clothing. So, I asked Mari to create a pattern and make a basic dress from my favourite fabric blend, a combination of rayon, nylon, and elastin. I prewashed the fabric because I plan to wear the dress for travel, so washability is important. This fabric, sometimes called Ponte, has a long life and doesn’t lose its shape. I asked Mari to make me a basic sleeveless sheath, which can be worn with a jacket, cardigan, short coat, or shawl. I could even put a thin top under it for a change. 


I am always enthusiastic about learning, and Mary has taught me several new things about pattern design, fit, and fashion. I am delighted to introduce Mari to you in my seventh Saskatchewan Fashion Artisan Video. This video features Mari of Mari’s Sewing, located at the Canarama Shopping Centre in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. To view the video, click HERE and next time you have a fashion issue to discuss, pay a visit to Mari. If you don’t live in Saskatoon, go in search of a tailor in your city. I look forward to hearing some of your best wardrobe ideas. I know I am not the only person searching for a comfortable, well-styled fit.  

Comments (3)

  • Marion Murawsky
    January 27, 2021 at 01:40 pm

    Agreed. So many people find that garments are not fitting in one area or another. All they need is a little nip & a tuck & they would have a great outfit. Mari can solve these issues.

  • Gayle Senger
    January 27, 2021 at 01:03 pm

    Maureen. Whatever you do, you do it with 100% of your energy. You are always a very well-dressed groomed young lady. And where you find the time for all of it, I don't know. But selling things you love is definitely your forte. God bless!!

  • The Boy
    January 27, 2021 at 10:13 am

    I am not sure of all the procedures described but I can attest to the fact that the results are fabulous.

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