Finding That Perfect Suit Is Like Finding The Perfect Wedding Gown…

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Ever since I began competing in bodybuilding contests in 2009, I have had a fixation on suits. My fixation became a bit extreme during the time I was chasing after an IFBB Pro Card, and resulted in the purchase of a total of NINETEEN suits from 2009 through 2014!

Here is the breakdown of all the suits I bought each year:

2009:
Luli Fama off-the-rack suit – Bought through Victoria’s Secret Catalog. Wore for my first contest.
Royal blue Fresh Peaches custom suit – Wore this at Tournament of Champions.
White and silver Fresh Peaches custom suit – Wore this at Border States.
Black Fresh Peaches custom suit – Wore this at NPC Nationals.
Lilac Fresh Peaches custom suit – Wore this at Excalibur.

2010:
Slate blue hologram print Fresh Peaches custom suit – Wore this at Emerald Cup.
Purple leopard print Fresh Peaches custom suit – Never wore this one.
Zebra print Fresh Peaches custom suit – Wore this at Team Universe.
Tiger print Fresh Peaches custom suit – Never wore this one.
Deep blue shatterglass effect Fresh Peaches custom suit – Wore this at USA, Jr. USA, IFBB North American, NPC Nationals.

2011:
Blue Maison Lyle custom suit – Never wore this one.
Peacock custom suit made by me – Wore this at Team Universe, Master’s Nationals, IFBB North American, NPC Nationals.

2012:
Peach Tamee Marie cusstom suit – Never wore this one.
Red CJ’s Elite custom suit – Wore this at NPC Pittsburgh, Team Universe, Master’s Nationals.
Green CJ’s Elite custom suit – Wore this at IFBB North American. (I also wore this at both Pro contests I did in 2014).

2013:
Light blue CJ’s Elite custom suit – Wore this at NPC Metropolitan.
Tangerine CJ’s Elite custom suit – Wore this at Team Universe, Sac Pro.
Iris blue Jagware competition suit – Wore this at Irongames Pro.

2014:
Gold Ravish Sands custom suit – Wore this at Dennis James Classic Pro, Nor Cal Pro.
Bikini Front
I no longer have a fixation on buying the “perfect” suit and have sold most of my suits. However, there are a few suits I will never get rid of, for various reasons:
Zebra print Fresh Peaches custom suit – This suit turned out to be great for photo shoots.
Tiger print Fresh Peaches custom suit – This suit also turned out to be great for photo shoots.

This was from IFBB North American in Cleveland, Ohio in 2012.  I hadn't seen this image until now!  That was an amazing contest for me, in which I took a First Place Finish in Open Bikini C, beating out 27 other young ladies.  I was 45 there!

This was from IFBB North American in Cleveland, Ohio in 2012. I hadn’t seen this image until now! That was an amazing contest for me, in which I took a First Place Finish in Open Bikini C, beating out 27 other young ladies. I was 45 there!

Peacock custom suit made by me – I have this suit in a shadowbox because I am very proud of the fact that I made this myself and took three first place national finishes in this suit.
Green CJ’s Elite custom suit – This is now my backup suit for IFBB Pro events.
Tangerine CJ’s Elite custom suit – I won my IFBB Pro Card in this suit and will never get rid of it due to its sentimental value. In addition, this is my main suit for IFBB Pro events.

I completely understand now the quest for a perfect suit can turn into an obsession! Over the years I managed to buy suits in green, various shades of blue, white, black, lilac, blue-purple, animal prints, peacock, peach, tangerine, red, and gold! Sometimes colors which look amazing on some competitors might not look as good on you, or maybe the color is perfect, but the cut isn’t quite right. I enjoyed trying out different colors and suitmakers, but I don’t think it was sensible at all for me to buy so many suits! Clearly I was a bit fickle about competition suits, hence the constant switching from one suit to another.

The entire process of selecting a suit is quite similar to the process of hunting for the perfect wedding gown. Yet even when I was searching for a wedding gown, I didn’t invest nearly as much time in that search, partially because I abhor shopping, but also because I was on a very limited budget when I shopped for a wedding gown. It was 1998 and I was in medical school, living off medical school loans, and paying for the entire wedding. What is amazing to me is that I have paid more for some competition suits than I paid for my wedding dress!

Believe it or not, I am still pondering the idea of having just “one more suit” made, but I keep pushing the idea aside because I know that would be frivolous. I know several competitors who struggle with the same suit frenzy that I have dealt with over the past eight years. Instead of spending major coin buying a bunch of different suits, you might want to consider just buying a couple of suits, one main suit and a backup suit. Your impulse may be to choose a favorite color to wear onstage, but make sure that the color/shade you choose looks good with your complexion and hair color! I have made that mistake a couple of times and ended up looking less than my best as a result. If you are indecisive, the massive selection of fabrics and connectors can be dizzying, so take your time when trying to decide on all the details. My absolute favorite suit designer is CJ’s Elite, not only because her suits always fit like a dream, but also because she has an extensive fabric and connector selection and is an amazing woman.

For those of you who want to try to save some money, a good option is to purchase used suits from a fellow competitor. I have two bikini division suits and a figure division suit for sale on my contest prep site: http://cutcurves.com/Storefront.php

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