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  • Writer's pictureSuzi

Stories of a Tall Girl

Updated: Feb 8, 2022

In this on-going series, "Stories of a Tall Girl" I'll be sharing stories from life on trying to get gear and apparel that fits. These stories will be mostly from me, but I'll share stories of others as well.


Tall Women's Clothing, Outerwear for tall women, Stories of a Tall Girl

purple ankle-height sneaker on snow. Gray shoe laces with orange and green striped socks showing above the shoe.
Storm Sneaker from Eddie Bauer. Gender-neutral sizing, and they had them in purple, so you know I had to grab them!!!

We all have struggles. Having big feet is a special type of torture.


12 years ago, I worked for an outdoor clothing retailer. I loved working there; I really enjoyed helping people problem solve, find gear that was appropriate for their activity, and generally meet new people. I have a couple stories about sizing, buyers, and general culture of outdoor clothing that I’d like to share.


I was working in men’s footwear at the time; the women’s footwear buyer came into the store to look at stock. When she came in, I asked her about investing in more women’s size 12s, (rather than having women who have large feet have to shop in men’s.) The buyer actually told me, “they don’t make women’s 12s.” I probably got a bit of an attitude because, I was wearing a size women’s 12 in that brand, on my foot at that moment! I could pro-deal size 12 from the brand, I could find them at other retailers, and the buyer had the audacity to lie to my face and tell me they simply didn’t make them. That story has stuck with me for 10 years, and I feel frustrated/discouraged every time I think of it. I also feel grateful that there are more people being educated in sizing, availability and encouraging companies to make more size 12s.


“they don’t make women’s 12” - Women's Footwear Buyer
It doesn't even make sense to say that!

I know not everyone who is tall has a large foot, and not only people with large feet have these issues. That said, everyone who hikes (or wears shoes) knows you have to try on a few pair to find the right fit. Between a small selection being available in the first place, combined with the lack of knowledge or effort on the part of retailers and buyers, it can be incredibly difficult to find comfortable, appropriate footwear when you have large (or small) feet. No one should have to suffer while they are active or are playing in the outdoors. Our feet should carry us to new places, not distract us from enjoying the moment.




If you have a story like this, please share it!



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