Thursday, September 22, 2011

Can We Put The Myth Of Marilyn's Size To Rest? We Can Try!

Marilyn Monroe's measurements per studio and dressmaker:

Measurements( studio's claim): 37-23-36 (inches)
93.9 - 58.4 - 91.4 (centimeters)
Measurements (dressmaker's claim): 35-22-35 (inches)
88.9 - 55.8 - 88.9 (centimeters) 

Oh, and the kicker:
Height: 5 feet, 5½ inches 166.62 (centimeters)
Weight: 118 pounds 53.5 kilograms

Calvin Klein sizing chart for Women's dresses/skirts.

Compare the documented measurements with the Calvin Klein sizing:

Waist is smaller than a CURRENT CK size 2  --less than 33.5 inches on chart.

Bust can be anywhere from a CURRENT 4 to an 8 on the CK chart..
(She was VERY curvy, waist to hip ratio.)

Hips fall under a size 2 on the CK chart.

We all know vanity sizing has taken hold. I used to wear a size 18/20 at this size 25 years ago. I now wear a 14/16. When my waist was 30 inches and my hips 41 in my youth, I wore a 12/13. That's a size 10 now on the chart. My sister used to use a size 7/8 in the 60s when she weighed 120 pounds and had a 36 inch bosom and 34 inch hips. Young sis would wear around 4 now.

The weight of 118 is consistent with those measurements. I remember when I was growing up and 36-26-36 was like the PERFECT tri-measure. And those women ranged from 115 to 120-something. Like my sis when she was slim, Playboy-scouted, and made guys go nuts.

I wouldn't worry if you had stats like Marilyn most of her career. That's not even overweight.

They give us smaller size number now why? Cause we're bigger and they don't wanna offend the customers.

And a bit more:

Snopes on Marilyn Monroe's being size 16. False.

Anyone with eyes can look at the old flicks and pics with Marilyn and see she chubbed up some in certain films (like SLitH and The Misfits) and was very slim in others (seen the reels from unfinished last flick and the last photo shoot with nudes? Positively society slender with boobs.)

Marilyn was not anywhere what today's 12, 14, and certainly not 16 in sizes. Not even close. My eyes tell me that. :)  She may have plumped up to a size 12 of yesteryear in her chubbiest, but THAT size 12 would be closer to today's 10, tops. And I'd call that NOT obese. Perhaps a bit overweight at her plumpiest. But for most of her career, she was a very healthy looking weight and not fat at all. Busty, yeah. Not fat.

And if I looked like Marilyn, figure-wise, as she did in GPB or T7YI or All About Eve or Niagara, I would not have any issue with the bod. I'd figure I was pretty darn perfect. : ) As most men probably did, too. If Marily walked down an urban street today, she'd still turn heads. That figure will not go out of style.

All that because I don't want us to justify the super-skinny/underweight model fixation we have--that's just plain nutty and insulting to women, period-- but I don't want to justify us trying to say, "Hey, we can be fat, Marilyn was fat." No, she wasn't. She had mood issues and sometimes plumped up, but even when she did, her BMI (at the supposed high of 140 lbs) would not be overweight by today's BMI charts.

People in the US are fatter than ever. Period.

And that's my say on the Marilyn issue. :D

Note--see the previous posts's comment section for what led to this posts. :)

And THIS blogger did a better job than me giving info HERE.


Suzan said...

When I was in my 20's I was 36-23-36. Today I'll be thrilled if I get to 38-28-38 and be a size 10. Thrilled to death.

Princess Dieter said...

Dang, Suz. I'm gonna start calling you "Mini Marilyn!" That's some amazing youth numbers. I never had that era of body bliss. ; )

I'd happily take 38-28-38. Ain't gonna happen. But a gal can dream, dream...

Laryssa said...

Dr. Oz did a show about the differences in clothing sizes last season, showing how brands today have changed sizing in clothes to make women feel better about themselves, which is referred to as "vanity sizing". The NY Times also did an article about the same thing earlier this year. Both showed that (as an example) a nowadays size 12 can be worn by someone who is an actual size 12 all the way up to an actual size 18 -- depending on who the maker is. I learned a long time ago that unless I am shopping in a store that specializes solely on plus sizes, I have to try on the outfit or, if ordering online, I have to check the measurements because the sizes will be different. That's one reason I don't like to say what size clothes I wear because that can be very deceiving.

The point in my comment before was how society's view of what's "normal" has been changed by many different factors, some to do with TV/media, some attributed to what the government has deemed to be a so-called healthful diet, some having to do with the changes to the BMI charts back in 1998. We went from being considered overweight at 5'4"/175lbs to, with the "new & improved charts" being considered obese at that same weight. According to those new charts, my ideal weight (at 5'6" and being well-endowed since the age of 11) is supposed to be 130lbs but I know that 130 would make me look famished. How do I know this? Because at the age of 18, I was 149lbs, a size 10 and looked thin.

Some (not all) of the weight issues in this country also have to do with how food is now grown and processed to make it easier and quicker for the working families. You said to me before how the grains we used to eat 20+ years ago isn't what we get now; most foods are like that, with all the preservatives, antibiotics, etc. added to everything. The government told us to eat 6-8 servings of grains or 300gm a day. You and I both know that's way too much. It was just this year that the government changed the food pyramid to show a plate with a much better division of the foods we eat.

As Forrest Gump would say: And that's all I have to say about that. :)

Angela Pea said...

Harrumph. Clothing sizes are so totally messed up. I think women's clothes should be sized like men's clothes, with a bust, waist and hip measurement, period. That way, we can find clothes with an honest fit.

For instance, on that CC chart? A size 10 dress has a 38" bust; a size 6 jacket has a 38" bust (the size 10 jacket has a 40" bust). The size 10 pant has a 34.3" waist; the size 10 dress has a 30.5" waist. Which size am I? Apparently it depends upon what piece of clothing I'm wearing, pants, jacket or dress.

Grrrr...and my husband wonders why I hate clothes shopping.

Carbie Girl said...

THANK YOU... i have to roll my eyes when people like to throw that Marilyn Monroe line out. You can tell by looking at the glamour girl that she is NOT and never was what we know as a size 12 today. That said I would be thrilled to be a size 12 regardless. lol

Jane Cartelli said...

Lucille Ball was am 8/10. I have seen her clothing up close. Her clothing would not fit me. I wear an 8/10 in today's sizes. It is an obvious difference.
A few years ago I noticed Ralph Lauren clothing fit me in a smaller size than other brands. That was the first time I became aware of vanity sizing - but I still bought the clothes because the size made me feel good. The marketing department knows how to manipulate very well.


Rachellabelle - My Hips Don't Lie said...

I always knew that too. People just blew things out of proportion because she was curvy. I've seen every movie of hers and she was always in a normal weight range.

Bluezy said...

Oh this is so good. I really appreciate this. I read it was a size 14 she wore. Thanks for taking the time to research this.
The thing about Marilyn and women of that era was the "bubble butt" how do you call it? is like oh it is called "hour glass". I have to wonder about 5'5" at 118, though..she really had a meaty hind end. I guess it is how it is stacked. J-Lo's got it presently. I am sure many celebs do, yet can't really think of them.

This is in the realms of what was on my mind earlier today when watching a movie with Tricia Helfer (the skinny blond from Battle Star Galactica cylon #5). She was in a movie I was watching called "Open House" (with Stephen Moyer who is Vampire Bill from True Blood) and I noticed that very skinny but long has worked for her, but I just don't understand it. Sci Fi guys supposedly are mesmerized by her. I think it is more her face..

MB said...

Vanity sizing drives me crazy. I can wear size 4 through 10 these days and know that a size 4 today is what a size 10-12 was 20 years ago. I still have some clothes to prove it.

Anonymous said...

When you say a 36-26-36 woman is generally 115-120, I have to argue that. My measurements are very close to that but since I am quite a bit taller than the a stage woman, my weight tends to be about 10-20 lbs heavier than what you listed. At 120 I'd be a size 1-2 at 5'10", and near skeletal I know this be wise I was a 3 in the high 120s,Just wanted to point that out cuz I feel like taller girls endup feeling "big" when they really are not.. Something I obviously take to heart. Our numbers will rarely match up with the ideals unless naturally runway thin.

Anonymous said...

*quite a bit taller than the average woman

Anonymous said...

•because I was blah blah blah, not be wise, although that was a funny oops. My proofreading skills are lacking tonight.

Waist to Hip Ratio said...

I can understand Waist-Hip Ratio standard for health reasons but it is not accurate in measuring women’s curvature attractiveness to men. Why do you measure around the buttocks? Aren’t hips and buttocks two different things? I think some sort of Vernier Caliper should be used to measure from side to side instead of including the butt. That way you get a true and consistent hip size instead of all these different sized women with the same WHR. You can’t see hips from the side like you can the butt. Sophia Loren has hips; Kenya Moore has a big butt. Racquel Welch as hips; Buffy the Body has a big butt; Tyra Banks (now that she filled out) has hips; Bo Derek, with her narrow hips and flat butt, has a small curvature because of her even smaller waist. Anna Nicole with the same WHR as Kate Moss…give me a break!!! Kate looks like a man next to Anna.