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Friday, August 17, 2012

146

Things We Know for Sure About Marilyn Monroe

1. She was a size twelve. But not, like, a twelve twelve. An olden time twelve. This is why, when you try on vintage clothing, they refuse to sell it to you, and instead burn everything you've touched and send you home down the river in a wine-barrel.

2. A friend of yours once saw her clothes at a museum, and, omigod, you would not BELIEVE how tiny her waist was! Like, we're talking Pa Ingalls could have spanned it with his hands, easy.

3. She was a Parselmouth.

4. No, really, the sizes were totally different. You think she's fat, now that you know she was a size twelve, but, in fact, that wasn't so fat then.

5. She was a size four.

6. Marilyn was the first person ever to say "do you want fries with that?" as an ironic statement about your job prospects.

7. She was married to Samuel Beckett.

8. She was married to Barry Bonds.

9. The Kennedy family had her killed.

10. Vanity Fair had her killed.

11. She died for our sins.

12. You have to remember that people wore a lot of things that cinched their waists back then, which is why, when you see them in bikinis, they look almost a little weird? Like, there's that crazy indent? Marilyn had that indent. So, it's not that your waist is so huge, really. You just need shapewear.

13. Someone once asked her (of her nude photos), "but didn't you have anything on?" and she said "the radio." But she actually said "Car Talk."

14. During her marriage to Samuel Beckett, he wanted to cast her as "Nell" in "Endgame," but all of the costumes hung on her because of her tiny waist.

15. If you call her "Norma Jean," it makes it seem like you knew her.

16. Vanity Fair faked her death, and she's been living in Graydon Carter's basement ever since.

17. You can buy a bunch of her personal items at auction every few years, which makes it seem like you knew her.

18. She was a size six.

19. She was buried in a green Pucci dress, which will probably come up at auction in your lifetime.

20. When it does, someone will measure the waist, and that person will be paid to come on television and tell us how many inches it was.

21. Of that person, Ted Hughes once wrote: "Let them / Jerk their tail-stumps, bristle and vomit / Over their symposia. Think her better / Spread with holy care on a high grid / For vultures / To take back into the sun. Imagine / These bone-crushing mouths the mouths / That labour for the beetle / Who will roll her back into the sun."

22. She was a size zero.

146 Comments / Post A Comment

sarah girl

Actual LOL at "Car Talk"

ELECTROMAGNETIC CHAOS

@Sarah H.: Car Talk has actually been in production since the advent of human hearing

katiemcgillicuddy

@Too Much Internet Ugh, and it's going away!

aliceandstuff

I had no idea she was a size 2.

StandardTuber

@aliceandstuff I heard she was a size 8.

gfrancie

@aliceandstuff Actually she invented size 1.

Linette

@Mabissa @aliceandstuff

I found this helpful thing: http://jezebel.com/5299793/for-the-last-time-what-size-was-marilyn-monroe

Essentially, she was tiny-waisted and pretty voluptuous, so while her hips might've been a size 8 or so, her waist was more like a size 4 (I'm guesstimating in a big way here, but it's like that). She probably wouldn't have fit into a lot of pants these days in any size, because they aren't designed for hourglass figures. Lady would've needed a tailor.

StandardTuber

@gfrancie But her feet were huge, like size 13s.

L M
L M

@Linette her waist size was more like a 00, if that: 22-inch average over most of her career, including Some Like It Hot. here are her and other famous motivating waist sizes.

Linette

@Lucia Martinez Having never had anything remotely approaching a size-0 waist, I was just guessing. My point was simply that her waist was a different "size" than her hips were, and that therefore this guessing game of sizing is pretty pointless, since she would likely be unable to buy any pair of pants off any designer rack.

I think it's kind of odd that we want to know her size so we can say we were that same size. I suppose we could aspire to the same measurements if we were the same height? But why? Confusion, she is mine.

L M
L M

@Linette eh, a lot of people make that sort of move to feel better about their bodies, I'd assume. my waist will, sadly, never be a 22, but, um, I'll do more situps now?

StandardTuber

@Linette Oh, I was just having fun with this "size" game :)

Cat named Virtute

@Lucia Martinez Motivating????

Linette

@Lucia Martinez I am too tall and wide-built to ever have such a tiny waist. Sometimes I covet this petiteness in the same way I covet red hair. I do not have the complexion for red hair, so I can't ever have it, but it's fun to imagine what it would be like to be completely different. Itty-bitty waists fall in this category for me. It would be so interesting to be so delicate.

L M
L M

@Cat named Virtute or despair-inducing, pick your poison.

L M
L M

@Linette oh, and the only reason I know vintage/modern sizes and measurements it because I sew and use a lot of vintage patterns.

Ellie

@Linette Pants rant: It drives me crazy how almost all pants aren't made for people who don't fit that conventional American body type - and I feel like the fit of pants is really mysterious and arcane, I just don't understand how it works at all. I was recently in Eastern Europe and I regret that I didn't buy jeans there because the women there tend to be more my kind of body type.

H.E. Ladypants

@Linette I do that, too! I've always been sort of tall and powerfully built and I like it. But there are also a lot of times where I wonder about what it would be like to feel small and delicate and all that jazz.

I do like, however, being able to completely write off any discussion of measurement sizes. I'm so much taller than the average woman (and even more so the women of the past) that it's just completely separate from my lived reality.

stonefruit

@Lucia Martinez um, or neither, because they're just waists/body parts. :(

dauphine

@aliceandstuff
It's like this: People ask why I dont wear heels more often, I will always get carded, burly men will always be attracted to me, and upon questioning admit that they like to 'feel protective' over petite women. I get drunk a lot more quickly, and all my coworkers assume this is my first job out of college. Also, everything, pants, dresses, skirts, always awkwardly long on me. #problems.

whateverlolawants

@Ellie This article from Slate explains some of the history of sizing. When I was in Latin America, I probably should have bought jeans. Most women there are my height.

PistolPackinMama

@whateverlolawants And once again I love Jane and her "size isn't a fact, fit is" line.

Also, I heard JFK had the FBI go through MM's wardrobe and change all the size tags to different numbers so we would spend all our time worrying about this and not his legacy as the Vietnam Escalator.

Cat named Virtute

@Lucia Martinez Yeah, echoing @stonefruit, I feel like both kind of miss the point of the satire here.

L M
L M

@Cat named Virtute @stonefruit no, I get the satire (do people not?), I just also have vintage dresses to squeeze into.

sovereignann@twitter

@Ellie I honest to GOD never found pants that fit me until I was plus sized.I had a waist to hips ratio issue as well. So much cinching and soooooooo many sizes in my closet from a 3 in full skirts to a 10 in some pants. It is my firm belief this is done on purpose to make women crazy. Now? An 18 across the board.

PistolPackinMama

@Lucia Martinez Also! LUUUCCCIiIAAAAAAA. I was wondering where you've been.

L M
L M

@PistolPackinMama dieting. (JAY KAY, BODY-POSITIVE PEOPLE.)

insouciantlover

@H.E. Ladypants I feel this way too (being so much taller that you're removed from relating at all). Vintage clothing stores are nice for things like scarves because the only olden timey lady whose clothes I'd fit would be Julia Child.

Xanthophyllippa

@PistolPackinMama I heard something similar except it was the KGB and not the FBI, because they were hoping to distract us long enough to take over. The distraction worked, but they realized if we were in fact that easily distracted, we're probably not worth invading.

PistolPackinMama

@Lucia Martinez I KNOOOOOWWWWWWW! (you're kidding and not, like, living in Diet Camp or something.)

And besides, if you can make the vintage clothes work/fit, I say go for it, because someone should and that someone isn't going to be me unless Vintage Vogue is making patterns I can use. (don't starve for them, though. The world has too much Hollandaise and too little time.)

kellyography

@Linette I have red hair (and the ruddy, translucent complexion to go with it) but am also super wide-built and could never have a 22-inch waist. My grandma had a CRAZY TINY waist when she got married, and even my thigh does not fit into her wedding dress, which is, of course, awesome and from the 50s. Sigh.

Linette

@kellyography I could write an entire essay on the many bodily traits I have coveted in my life at one time or another. Maybe I shall.

So frequently people talk about what they want in relation to their actual body, which I've also done (you know - lose ten pounds, get rid of that zit, etc.), but this is sheer fantasy. Wanting to be one of those ladies with absurdly long legs, say, or be all short and voluptuous and dark-haired and sassy with eyeglasses, or kind of frail and ethereal and beautifully-voiced.

I suppose this goes with personality traits too. I have often wished I was the quiet, mysterious type who only says deeply profound things and never gossips, but that is a person I will never be. It's fun to imagine the people you could be, though! It's more fun than actually attempting to make changes to who you are.

Caitlin Podiak

@Linette Ooh, short and voluptuous and dark-haired and sassy with eyeglasses is a thing someone might fantasize about being? Now that is a pleasant revelation to contemplate...

Linette

@aliceandstuff There are a lot of these ladies in the Bay Area, and every time I see one of them they are all perfectly dressed and clear-skinned and really delightful looking. They all look like they would have delicious laughs and a box full of chocolates constantly open next to the tea table, on which would be all the books you'd then spend the next four hours gabbing about. And she'd have a garter belt and stocking collection just because, but only very lucky gentlemen would ever find out about it.

One of these ladies had a parasol to protect her lovely creamy skin from the sun, and she looked like an old-fashioned pin-up girl and I had to sit down for a minute because she was just so fantastic. She was also maybe five foot high, with little teeny bright red pumps that matched her parasol. I may have been slightly in love with her.

eva luna

@Lucia Martinez

Well, I'm skeptical that her waist was 22 inches naturally. She did have a very tiny waist, but women during that period tended to wear girdles, so realistically it may have been closer to 24-25. It's possible that her waist truly was 22 inches. Measuring a garment proves that her waist couldn't have been too much bigger than 22 inches, but not that it absolutely was.

sarah girl

23. She made a bunch of wise and sassy comments that for some reason are only found on the Popular page of Pinterest!

wee_ramekin

@Sarah H. My youngest sister's quote on her Facebook page is that "A wise girl kisses but doesn't love, listens but doesn't believe, and leaves before she is left." quote.

Whyyyyyyyyyyyyy does she want that quote to be the thing by which people come to know her? Oh. Right. She's 21. #dramz #<3u,sisty

JessicaLovejoy

@wee_ramekin Why, wee_wee_ramekin, WHHYYYYYY

wee_ramekin

@JessicaLovejoy BECAUSE IF YOU CAN'T HANDLE HER AT HER WORST, THAN YOU DON'T DESERVE HER AT HER BEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEST, JESSICA!

[ETA: I actually really, really love and adore my sister.]

Lucienne

I always forget how lovely she was, and then I'll watch Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and I'll think "oh, yeah. she looked like that." Like my brain can't hold onto the reality, or something.

wee_ramekin

Wow, my brain's slow this morning. When I started this list, I was like "Jesus Nicole, I never knew you were such a size-obsessed Jerky Jerkerson".

Aaaaaaaaaand then I got it. Nicole, y u so brilliant?

OhMarie

"Like, we're talking Pa Ingalls could have spanned it with his hands, easy."

This is the greatest.

maybe partying will help

@OhMarie

That was where I choked on a piece of cantaloupe. YOU ALMOST KILLED ME NICOLE

sceps yarx

@OhMarie Thank God I wasn't eating anything....

Linette

@OhMarie It is literary allusions like these that let me know the Hairpin is nothing but kindred spirits. Also, Pa Ingalls was totally hot, all standing up to the Wilder boys in the long winter.

maybe partying will help

@Linette

Now that I'm thinking about it, Pa Ingalls might be the root of my fondness for extreme beards.

(if this devolves into a Men of Laura Ingalls Wilder Books appreciation thread I would not be averse. Call me, Cap)

Ophelia

@sceps yarx Particularly if you want your waist to be like Marilyn's.

stonefruit

@Linette but usually so shiftless! alas.

SuperMargie

@OhMarie But, how would Marilyn have looked in one of Ma's Delaine dresses?

Caitlin Podiak

@maybe partying will help A friend recently accused me of having "a daddy thing" after I complimented his new beard and then referenced Pa Ingalls as my attractive beard-having ideal. And when I have encouraged my boyfriend to let his scruff grow instead of shaving, he sometimes raises an eyebrow and implies that I'm trying to make him look like my dad. It's like, ugh, creepy, I'm not attracted to my dad, I just like beards and Pa Ingalls, is that really so weird?

Tropical Iceland

@OhMarie
It's not weird, but your dad totally sounds hot.

theotherginger

@Tropical Iceland agree. also, @maybe partying will help. Cap Garland. Maybe I could put a switch in my hair?

applestoapples

To paraphrase Damian from Mean Girls: "That's why Graydon Carter's hair is so big--because it's full of secrets"--like Marilyn Monroe being his basement hostage. Now it makes sense why 8 out of every 10 VF articles are about her.

EMarrinner

@applestoapples Right? Three cover stories in four years. :/

Ophelia

@applestoapples I think Graydon Carter might actually be @saythatscool

Danzig!

@Ophelia Daaamn

applestoapples

@Ophelia IT ALL MAKES SENSE

frigwiggin

Marilyn Monroe scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions. scorpions.

Bittersweet

@frigwiggin scorpions! scorpions.

Elizabeth Switaj@twitter

She only married Samuel Beckett because she couldn't marry James Joyce. Also, she was super jealous of Lucia Joyce. Very disturbing.

Megasus

@Elizabeth Switaj@twitter I WILL have a playwright if it kills me!

avoidmadness

Last week I went hiking with a couple that I thought was totally sane but it turns out the bf is a conspiracy theorist, so for an hour I got to hear about how he knows someone that knows someone who worked on the Marilyn case and how he has proof that the Kennedys killed her. I'm down with drunkenly talking about these things and speculating, having fun with something we'll never know, but the guy was insanely serious and it was a complete mood killer.

sceps yarx

@avoidmadness Oh nooooo! The exact same thing happened to me in high school! We had a sexy German exchange student named Florian (I am not making this up) and I totally hit on him and we went on a date to take the train to downtown San Francisco, and then on the way back he starts talking about all the illuminati symbols hidden in corporate logos and serious black helicopter b.s. and I was FREAKING OUT. After we got off the train I started crying because I was 16 and he was really cute and I had never experienced something like that before. Why, Florian, why???

datalass

@avoidmadness My high school Spanish teacher was similarly convinced/obsessed. Any time there was a lull in the (Spanish) conversation, he'd blurt out, "They did, you know. Don't let anybody try to tell you otherwise. The Kennedys killed her BECAUSE THEY KNEW WHAT SHE KNEW."

Aunt Ada Doom

@datalass Now I desperately want to just blurt that in all my conversational lulls. Thanks.

Lily Rowan

@sceps yarx The sexy German exchange student is always named Florian.

cuminafterall

@Lily Rowan The sexy Honduran exchange student is always, oddly, named German.

MilesofMountains

@avoidmadness Earlier this year I had the same thing, but it was a contractor I hired to hike with me through the woods all day for two weeks so I actually had to PAY this guy to natter about chem trails and how global warming isn't real.

datalass

@Aunt Ada Doom To be fair, he interchanged the Kennedy conspiracy theory chatter with aphorisms like, "Never, NEVER eat vegetables with a spoon or else people will think you're easy. And I mean MASHED POTATOES TOO!"

whateverlolawants

@avoidmadness My coworker started going on about that the other day! This is the same girl who won't sign up as an organ donor because she thinks the doctor will let you die because he has a patient in a bed down the hall who needs your organs right away.

tales

@whateverlolawants My experience was a friend's grandfather and he had actually published a book about it. A book full of crazy.

runner in the garden

@sceps yarx
He had no time for love. A higher calling awaited him back home: to found Kraftwerk.
But the memory of that train ride haunts him still:

(this only works if you were in high school in the 1960s)

darklingplain

@tales I had a ski instructor who talked on and on about how baking soda CURED CANCER but Big Pharma hushed it up because there's no money in it.

BeebsLaRue

@datalass My middle school band teacher had an obsession with the Kennedy assassination. Like, instead of teaching us to play our instruments, he would go on and on about all these "theories" about the Kennedys and who killed JFK etcetera etcetera. He would also throw erasers and, occasionally, chairs at students. It was...disturbing. And yes, I just admitted that I played in the middle school band WHAT OF IT.

Verity

@darklingplain I know somebody who believes in faith healing and said that she heard about one case where someone was raised from the dead at his funeral.

insouciantlover

Sizes were different back then, you know.

theharpoon

@insouciantlover And actually she was a 7 1/2, anyway.

Ophelia

Pa Ingalls. Swoon.

Linette

I stopped reading just to come down here and say I'm so glad that I was not the only one walking around with a lifelong impression of Pa Ingalls' waist-spanning hands.

insouciantlover

@Linette I honestly don't know a single bookish woman who isn't haunted by that passage. Sometimes I still try to wrap my hands around my waist to see how many hands it would take. I think I'm at 4 hands.

MilesofMountains

@insouciantlover What if Pa Ingalls was a bear? Like, an actual grizzly bear. Maybe then he could wrap his hands around my waist. That's really about the end of my list of people who could do that, though.

TheLetterL

So, we're all convinced that "spanning the waist," means front AND back, right? Because I can also wrap my head around putting fingertips together and spanning the FRONT of one's waist. Even if together Pa's fingers measured 10-12," that would give Ma a waist of 20-24." That's small but not freakishly so...plus, you know, corsets.

Nicole Cliffe

You have to wear them all night, as Ma tells us!

datalass

@TheLetterL My old boss told me that when he met his wife, he could span her waist with his hands. For what it's worth, he has massive hands (but she still must have had a tiny waist).

Linette

@TheLetterL I think this is what fascinated me. I have tiny hands, so a waist that was small enough for me to span would be doll-sized. I think it was a combination of how tiny Ma's waist must have been and how big Pa's hands must have been . . . and then there was something about how sexy it would be to be completely captured in someone's hands.

I need to lie down.

pterodactgirl

@Linette Oh, the waist-spanning! It was part of my feminine ideal for an embarrassingly long time. This is maybe why I have debates with myself over exposing hypothetical future daughters to classic girl's fiction. On the one hand, little-me loved it, on the other, it exposed me to so many anachronistic ideas about femininity at an impressionable age....

whateverlolawants

@pterodactgirl I also sometimes question the validity of the statement. It could have been true... but once you read one article about Laura Ingalls Wilder exaggerating or glossing over something or writing weird things about the native residents nearby or being influenced by her libertarian activist daughter, you can't help but start questioning if Nelly was actually such a hosebeast.

She totally was, though.

insouciantlover

@MilesofMountains Not like a Castro manly bear? But what if I've been imagining Pa Ingalls in hot pants and suspenders this whole time?

sydwi

@Linette Yes! I swear, half the reason I want a boyfriend is so I actually have a man I can ask to try and span my waist with his hands. I know it's not actually possible, but I kind of want to know how many hands it takes. My tiny hands are useless for figuring this out, sigh.

stonefruit

@whateverlolawants I am not hearing arguments re: whether Nellie Oleson was a raging hosebeast. Yes, she was, end of discussion.

BEING MEAN TO JACK, WHAT IS THIS I CAN'T EVEN.

Nicole Cliffe

Remember when we thought Jack drowned when they crossed the river? WHY DIDN'T THEY PUT HIM IN THE DAMN WAGON?

stonefruit

@Nicole Cliffe but then the glowing eyes getting closer and closer to the campfire! and the wriggling joyful sloppy hug-and-kiss when Jack finds his people!

piggie

@Nicole Cliffe How many times did I shout this? So many times! And hating Nelly was like a formative emotion of my childhood. If that was taken away, I'm not sure what would be left of me.

whateverlolawants

@stonefruit That part was so scary! The glowing eyes. Eeee! All of the wolf encounters still raise my hair. And don't worry, you'll see that I still believe Nelly was a total hosebeast. Jack was the coolest and I now have a dog named Jack.

Sensory Homoncula

@insouciantlover I was eternally obsessed with how many yards of fabric to make a dress. Laura went down to the store and bought 18 yards of fabric to make the dress she wore when Alanzo proposed to her in the buggy.

Craftastrophies

@whateverlolawants (But I bet Laura started it).

mkpatter@twitter

I believe either of those things about Vanity Fair, based on how many covers they have with her on it that I imagine sell like hotcakes.

Nicole Cliffe

23. She was the inspiration for Elton John's "Saturday Night's Alright [For Fighting]."

sceps yarx

Gosh, it's so true about the weird indent. That famous James Bond bikini scene always really bothers me for that reason.

I actually think one of the movies responsible for changing the beauty standard is the 1959 Gidget. In the original movie everyone makes fun of her because she is scrawny and doesn't fill out her bathing suit, and all the sexy girls are really, really curvy. Like, butt, thighs, boobs and round stomachs to match! And the indent! It's like time travelling to a totally different mindspace. But all the boys end up liking Gidget because she goes surfing with them instead of just laying around on a beach towel all day. It's the sporty, just-one-of-the-guys thing that is so popular nowadays. Definitely the opposite of Marilyn...

sceps yarx

@sceps yarx I guess it just goes to show that people are going to play in-group out-group games with body types no matter what the beauty standard happens to be at the time.

downcomforter

@sceps yarx Seriously, I want to understand that indent, I seriously don't understand it. Were they all deformed by their girdles? Were they just made differently?

heroicdestinysquad

@sceps yarx I have nothing to add here except I'd be delighted if there was more Hairpin chatter about Gidget. Those movies were important to my pre-teen self.

H.E. Ladypants

@sceps yarx Oh man, my favorite part about Gidget is the girl I call Gidget's dykey gal-pal. She's only in a couple of scenes (she's the one flouncing the mattress for her to pretend to surf on, when Gidget has to stay home and recover) but she is totally striking to me as a character in a movie that is all about what girls and boys are supposed to be like. She's got a super-short pixie cut and walks around in these masculine sort of button down shirts but also seems to be pretty comfortable with herself and she's got a boyfriend! It's so weird because there are all these people tell Gidget that she needs to act like a girl to get a guy! But then there's this character who's totally not girly and is just fine.

pterodactgirl

@sceps yarx I remember watching Gidget as a teenager and NOT BEING ABLE TO GET OVER the through-the-looking-glass body image stuff. Those girls making fun of Gidget were jiggly! Didn't they know that was worse than death? Whereas Gidget was tiny and adorable and didn't jiggle at all and I wanted to look like her. Logically I could wrap my head around "changing ideals of beauty, etc." but the experience of seeing those changed ideals caught on film really affected me on a visceral level.

Sea Ermine

@downcomforter It's the foundation wear. People today still have it except today it's only people who do waist training with corsets. What happens is you wear girdles or corsets or other shapewear and these foundation garments have serious boning (if you read an article on Mad Men costuming they talk about how they use actual 1960s girdles and needed to put moleskin against the edges to keep it from cutting into their skin. The farther back in time you get the worse the foundationwear is). And because all day long everyday you are in these heavily boned garments eventually you get so used to them that when you take them off your waist stays that way for a day or so. A modern day person who probably has this issue is Dita Von Teese, just because she's been waist training since age 16 (and I believe has a 22 inch waist as a result of that, which you can see even in her corset-less pictures).

m. marie

@pterodactgirl You know what, though? That happens a lot in movies because nobody wants to cast an ugly protag. If it was made in 2004, the "hot girls" would be grotesquely fake tan orange with bleachy, straw textured, yellow blonde hair, and the bullied but ultimately virtuous and genuine "ugly girl" would be, like, Megan Fox. Cast it in 2012 and all the hot girls have unflattering glasses frames that take up their whole face, or shutter shades, and horrible asymmetrical half-buzzed haircuts, but they don't pull them off like Cassie does at all.

Beatrix Kiddo

@Sea Ermine Even with foundation wear, it seems like it wouldn't be possible to narrow your waist very much if you had any abdominal muscle at all. Right? I mean, I can't really imagine how that would work.

Sea Ermine

@Beatrix Kiddo From what I've read on waist training/tightlacing forums, it's a process that happens over time. So you start just by taking a couple inches off, then a little more, then a little more. In the Victorian era some people ended up not really developing much abdominal muscle because they started children in corsets (and would even tie their hands to the bed to keep them from unlacing them at night). This would also shift in their ribcages and compress their internal organs. Obviously things were much much less extreme by the time Marylin Monroe came around but she also probably didn't need to take extreme amounts off her waist to get her measurements.

According to her dressmaker these were her measurements:
Bust: 35-37 inches
Waist: 22-23 inches
Hips: 35-36 inches
So lets guess that her waist would have normally been 26, had she not done anything to make it smaller. That's an hourglass shape, but one that isn't that extreme and that can be found today amongst people who don't wear foundationwear or do crazy diets or whatever (I'm basing this off my own measurements, which are similar). So to get to her 22 inch waist that we see in pictures she'd only have to take off 4 inches, which I think would be possible. I mean, let's say she started wearing girdles at 16, and she first started getting more famous around age 24, that gives her 8 years to take off 4 inches which doesn't seem that crazy considering how common restrictive foundation garments were back then (especially since her waist might not have been 22 inches when she first started, it could have been bigger and gotten smaller later in her career). And wearing girdles that take off those 4 inches are enough to get those indents you see in pictures.

Of course this is all guessing, I didn't know her personally and I don't know exactly what kind of garments she wore but based on what was common for women to wear back then, if she really wanted to shrink her waist that much (which isn't unrealistic, as a large part of her career success was because of her sex appeal and she did put a lot of work into her appearance (dyed hair and apparently also a nose job and a chin implant)), then 4 inches isn't much of a stretch.

Craftastrophies

@Sea Ermine Which is why, also, I have these two channels on my shoulders from my bra straps. And a dent in my torso where the strap sits.

Reginal T. Squirge

Sure, she was a size 12 but was she READY TO ROCK!?

Ophelia

@Reginal T. Squirge That was so meta.

Anne Helen Petersen

She gave birth to Madonna and set her up with Warren Beatty.

Ialdagorth

While I will never understand completely the continuing obsession with her and the imaginary quote macros she apparently invented for Facebook, I really liked her in comedy roles. Some Like It Hot is my favorite, EVER and she does a great job in it.

"I don't want you to think I'm a drinker. I can stop any time I want to, only I don't want to."

Also I was once told that I kind of look like Jack Lemmon's Daphne and I am not sure if that's a plus or a minus.

anachronistique

@Ialdagorth Definitely a plus!

pterodactgirl

@Ialdagorth Girl had killer comic timing. This we do know for sure.

Ialdagorth

@anachronistique I do kind of want to do Jack Lemmon, so...I mean not now. Not now. No no. Before.

maybe partying will help

27. Marilyn Monroe's measurements were 36-25-34.

L M
L M

@maybe partying will help try 22 on the waist and you'll be closer.

frigwiggin

@maybe partying will help

Only if she's 5'3".

Regina Phalange

@maybe partying will help Well, I do like the way she brushed her hair. And I liked those stylish clothes she'd wear. But mostly, I liked the way the light hit the ice and glared.

Craftastrophies

@frigwiggin Cosmo knows NOTHING.

gfrancie

She came up with the awesome blossom.

sarah girl

@gfrancie She came up with the Bloomin' Onion!

aliceandstuff

@Sarah H. I always thought "bloomin' onion" sounded more like an STD than an appetizer.

m. marie

@aliceandstuff I want to unread this post!

gfrancie

@aliceandstuff to me the "bloomin' Onion" sounded like the onion should be into the dress reform movement.
"I like my appetizers to have a 19th century feminist attitude." (another bon mot from Marilyn Monroe. Look it up. You will find it on any FB or Pinterest.)

insouciantlover

28. If you couldn't handle her at her worst, you sure didn't deserve her at her best.

yeah-elle

29. She danced like nobody was watching.

notandersoncooper

30. The coroner saved her vagina.

fondue with cheddar

Now we all have indents halfway between our navels and pubic bones, and no matter how much or little you weigh it always looks kind of gross.

m. marie

@jen325 This is the bane of my existence! I almost want to take up corset training to make it stop, but alas, I'm probably a decade full of low-rise jeans too late for that. Arrrghh!

KillaWafers

@jen325 Yes, I have this and I've always suspected it's the result of low-slung fashions. Also the hip indent -- no fully rounded hips, which I blame on my underwear. If I wore Spanx every day for a year do you think it would disappear?

theotherginger

@KillaWafers but would you want to find out?

fondue with cheddar

@KillaWafers Ugh, the hip indent! Someone needs to write a book on how to make our unwanted indents disappear. I don't mind having a generous amount of extra fat, I just hate the way it distributes itself.

ms. alex

@jen325 @KillaWafers Ah! The hip indent, I'm so relieved I'm not the only one. My left hip is noticeably more indent-ed than the right, and it irritates me to no end. Of all my body issues, it's the thing I'm most self-conscious about.
It's the reason I got bikini bottoms that are adjustable to be low or high waisted or somewhere in between.

JessicaLovejoy

Ugh, I love those old timey tummy dents!

Cathryn the Great

@JessicaLovejoy I have one! They're actually really easy to achieve, just buy a girdle or a high-waisted garter belt (the functional, ugly, six-strap kind, not any of this four-strap lacy nonsense) and wear it every day the weather allows. My only took about three months to appear.

RK
RK

31. Her name was Robert Paulson.

Matilda W

@Nicole Cliffe -- Brilliant. You hit the nail on the Marilyn-mad head.

Xanthophyllippa

32. Her first boyfriend saw her without her makeup and didn't immediately stake her through the heart.

hopelessshade

I have that indent! But it's only on one side and it was the result of a failed attempt to correct my scoliosis in middle school. >:|

My boyfriend of many many years only recently noticed it, to the tune of, "What happened to your side, did you get pinched by something today? You have, like, a lump."

insouciantlover

@hopelessshade Mmmm, romance!

Sensory Homoncula

They asked her What do you sleep in? and she replied, "Chanel #5."

Also, her on screen dresses were custom made, and did not have a size. The dresses did not have zippers or buttons-- Wardrobe left a seam open and then neatly stitched it closed ON THE BODY.

amarz

I've always wondered about the waist indentations! I've been watching lots of MST3K lately so... lots of scantily dressed women from the 50's. I actually think the indentation plus the little bit of a belly is kind of awesome :o

creaves@twitter

This is so good/I feel so weird about Marilyn sometimes.

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