It's Memorial Day weekend and all of the pools will officially open!! Memories of Summers past have me day-dreaming about taking a dip in an icy-cold and refreshing pool! Ohhhh man, I just can't wait! Here is a little fun in the sun, poolside inspiration for you ladies...enjoy your weekend and as always, be safe!
Another victim to the clothing industry, The Limited's sister company, Eloquii is closing up shop after just a few short years of catering to the plus size woman! Looking for a good deal? Head on over to their website and check out their amazing close-out sales and work friendly fashions!
It's a sad, harsh reality that high-end, plus size designers are having to close up shop one by one because they aren't "making it" against the fast-fashion, plus-size friendly, retail giants like Target, H&M and Forever21 . It's no wonder that when going up against these fast fashion companies -who produce overseas and in MUCH larger quantities- the "little guy" comes out on the bottom.
After hearing that several of my favorite companies were going “under”, I realized I’m a part of that problem and honestly, I don’t know how/why/if I should or could even change that. It’s not that I don’t support or adore these collections; I’m just raising these questions in search of solutions for the girl who always has her paycheck spent before it hits the bank.
The awesome thing about plus size clothiers like Domino Dollhouse, Cult of California, and Ashley Nell Tipton is that they all cater to a specific “girl” and each collection tells a story. The designers set their minds on a few trends and silhouettes, design an immaculate collection accordingly, pick out the fabrics, have it manufactured, and once it’s sent back to them, they have to package it, put the products online, advertise, and ship it out to awaiting consumers, all by themselves… all while trying to “make” a profit. Not to mention, finding models, photographing the clothes, and marketing the collection. PHEW. That’s a lot of blood and sweat put into a “dream” … for one of these larger companies to come by and knock off the collection and have available a week later for 1/3 the cost. So how do we help keep these companies and talented designers floating?
Truth be told, I choose "fast fashion" over quality (the majority of the time) because of the price, style, and availability. I will always purchase my “closet items” (things every woman should have in her closet like jeans, a trench coat, LBD, and under-garments) from the best stores regardless of price… BUT at this time in my life, "price" often takes precedent over all else. I frequent my local thrift stores so much, they know me by name and I could say that 75% of my wardrobe is thrifted. + I’m the kind of girl who has a closet-room full of options, hates being photographed in the same outfit twice, and loves having the latest “trends” hanging in her closet.
How does a girl, like me afford to buy trendy items at boutique prices? For the cost of one "botique" dress (aprx. $75), I could buy 3 dresses at a big-box company, or 30 items at my local thrift store. I just can't find it in myself to splurge...
I do my best to follow these sites and use every opportunity I can, to purchase things from them, when they are having a sale or are offering promos but at the end of the day… if given the option I’d spend $20 over $80 any day (except the day, that I become a millionaire… then I’ll buy you all houses).
This is a fashion industry problem, not just a plus size problem... How can we help these small boutiques and further their talented designers careers? What's the solution?
As with anything else in life, it’s important to build a strong foundation when dressing. Regardless of shape, size, and age it’s important to set the tone for one’s outfit and what you wear underneath it all, is your outfit’s foundation. Investing in proper fitting bras, panties and shape-wear will ensure that you will look your absolute best.
Please note that I used a very important word in that last sentence. INVESTING in proper fitting undergarments is crucial. Let’s face it ladies, we all know… you get what you pay for! Quality comes with a steeper price but the quality items will last you 3x’s longer!
Did you know that 8 of 10 women wear the wrong bra size? WHAT? Ok ok ok. If you’re reading this and you have never been professionally sized for a bra, STOP WHAT YOU ARE DOING (wait, finish this article) and go to your local Victoria Secret or Lane Bryant and have a professional size you up! The majority of back pain, unwanted back fat bulges and falling out in the front can be solved right there! I know, it’s easy to feel embarrassed when you walk into a store and ask to be fitted… but the truth of the matter is, it’s their job, they fit women daily for bras, and when you leave… you will probably never see that person again, so it doesn’t really matter how close you two were in the two minutes it took to get fitted! The best part is, whether or not you leave purchasing something, you’ve gained some CRUCIAL knowledge, your proper bra size! A proper fitting bra is the most important part of building your outfits foundation.
If you wear a 36’ B or higher and/or consider yourself somewhat on the “fuller-figured” size by all means, buy your bras at Cacique (Lane Bryant’s sister company). THE most amazing, life changing bra you will ever wear, is waiting on you! Want sexy cleavage? Need something to wear under your work clothes? Working Out? Hate under-wires? CACIQUE is your one stop destination to bra happiness. Check their website for deals… they are usually running a BOGO sale &&&& don’t forget to ask for your free bra fitting!!
The second part to building your outfits foundation is underwear. The good news is, you probably are wearing the right SIZE of underwear but you’re not necessarily wearing the right type. With underwear, it’s important to be comfortable, pick a type that compliments your figure, and to choose a fabric that doesn’t leave panty lines to show through your clothes. A good place to start is to try different materials of your favorite “go to” fit.
Every foundation needs a strong-hold, and the strong-hold in your wardrobe has got to be the shape-wear. After the perfect bra and undies have been selected for your outfit, it’s time to layer on the shape-wear. I know ladies, this is the most dreaded part about dressing but unfortunately you have two options… let all of your lines, curves, bulges, and wiggly parts show through… or smooth them out with a little layering. There’s lots of options out there… if you’re pairing a cute top with jeans, consider a smoothing tank! If you’re going out to celebrate, or wearing a dress that’s fitted… invest in a pair of Spanx!! Now, I know this isn’t the first time you’ve heard of Spanx, but maybe THIS time, you’ll listen and try out a pair! You will never put anything else on your body that creates this much magic. Your shape-wear should fit tightly but it should also be comfortable! You will never look good in something that is uncomfortable because you will be pulling on it and tugging at it the whole time you’re wearing it. Also, Spanx are for your eyes only (they are not sexy), the sole purpose of shape-wear is to create smooth lines and to hold you in! I had to learn my lesson the hard way, less expensive versions of spanx don’t do half the “work” that the real things do. If you’re spending any money at all on shape-wear, I’d go with name brand on this one!
For amazing bras, undies, shapewear and more check out Lane Bryant!
Interested in any of the items you see here? Just click the photo for more information!
I'm really into all things spiked and studded but everything I love is ridiculously expensive...
So what's a thrifty and crafty gal like me to do??
Keep in mind the item(s) you want to bedazzle + purchase your own spikes here...
Get to crafting!!!
Check out my own DIY creations below!
For me, spring is a time for starting a new… much like the blooming flowers; it gives us the chance to blossom after the colder weather.
I find that winter weather allows us to cover up and hide those unflattering parts of our bodies underneath bulky coats and sweaters. With a Nashville spring on the horizon, it’s going to be hard to stay under wraps for long. Wearing less clothing is often a difficult task for those of us who feel like we have a lot to hide. The good news is, it doesn’t have to be that way. There are tons of warm weather staple items that you can add to refresh your closet for Spring.
Ok… I’m just going to go ahead and say it. A lot of woman big or small have problems showing off their legs and arms. Whether you feel like shorts and tank tops are unflattering on you or you just feel like there are no options out there, I’m here to tell you there is hope and if you’ll let me… I’ll help you get Spring ready!
The Bermuda short is the perfect flattering “short” option for all ladies! If you’re not familiar… the Bermuda short, is the one that stops right at your knee and you can easily find them in every color and material! If you’re a shorter lady and the Bermuda falls past your knee, just add a cuff to the bottom!
Another great alternative to your jeans would be the feminine and flattering A-Line or “Skater” skirt. This is one of my favorite go to items and it can be worn with and for just about anything! The skater skirt is cut to be fitted at the waist band and then flares out camouflaging everything under the waist! PERFECTION- if you ask me! ;)
Both of these warm weather staple items can easily be paired with a basic t-shirt and flip flops for casual outings or dressed up with a collard top, fitted blazer, and wedges for something a bit fancier.
Spring dresses are a dime a dozen, yet I rarely see fuller figured ladies out and about wearing them. I would have to say that dresses are my favorite clothing item to wear during all seasons and my closet is filled with them! Dresses can be flattering for everyone; you just have to be sure to try on a few to find the right cut for you. Just like the skirt, A-line dresses promise to flatter every figure… so give one a try.
Lastly, ladies… you have to let go of your fear of all things sleeveless. I get it… I don’t like to bare my “flabby” arms either BUT the key is to have them in your closet for layering purposes. It’s going to get really hot, really soon and trying to stay covered up is just going to make you miserable! If you wear a sleeveless dress, or even a tank top you can easily layer a light-weight short sleeve cardigan over it for the perfect layered combination!
Out and about shopping this month? Check out JC Penny’s! Yes, you heard that right! Inexpensive, affordable, and fashionable items! Make sure to check out their Joe Fresh line while you’re there!
Are you more of an online shopper? Try ASOS Curve – www.asos.com,