The other day, the team at Just My Size (who I met in New York during FFFWeek) e-mailed me to say that they wanted to send me a little holiday gift. Just a couple days later I received the cutest holiday selections with everything I would need: a comfy shirt, underwear, a bra, and tights. It was lovely and thoughtful, but little did I know that they would then offer to send a holiday gift to three of you, personalized with your sizes in everything!
To enter to win a Holiday Essentials gift from JMS (sizes up to a 6x!), comment on this post with your personal holiday essential(s). What do you need most through the season? I think my essentials are tights and a deep red lipstick.
You can comment and enter through Monday, December 16. You must live in the United States and leave an email address or Twitter username to contact you through. Winners will be selected using random.org number generator.
Thank you, Just My Size, for the holiday goodies and sponsoring this giveaway!
Hello! Just a quick post today I am up to my eyes in responding to student work as we quickly approach the final weeks of the semester. Wow! I can’t believe that I am already about to complete my first semester there. I can’t remember if I mentioned it on here or not, but in August I got quite the surprise of being taken on as a full-time lecturer at the university where I did my graduate work. The first two months were hard (and I was sick with Anemia–which is awful), but the last couple months have really been inspiring, fun, and (still) hard. I love it though. I’m very thankful to have a job that makes me happy and fulfilled, even though I know it’s not guaranteed after this year, I’m still glad to have this year to learn and grow as a teacher.
Besides my job, I have lots of other things to be thankful for: readers who come back when I disappear for a month at a time, fellow bloggers who are constantly “putting themselves out there” for readers, like me, to read and enjoy, that my health issue is continuing to get easier to manage, and my family and friends. I’ve gotten a lot of opportunities this past year in blogging and in my work world, and I hope to continue to put myself out there to gain more.
I hope those that celebrate Thanksgiving had a wonderful holiday, and that those who are outside of the US or working over the holidays also experienced the joy that surrounds holidays.
As for Thanksgiving Day itself, I wore this super comfortable Kiyonna Wrapped in Romance Dress. I always get compliments when I wear a Kiyonna dress, and when I’m wearing a maxi I tend to respond that I get the luxury of looking nice while wearing, what feels like, lounge wear. It’s THAT comfortable!
This is a true wrap dress. There’s plenty of fabric, so it is not one of those wraps that you have to keep tugging at all day. It has dolman sleeves, so it’s a little more drape-y up top. I really loved the gathering at the shoulders. My hair is unfortunately covering it up, but it gave the top a great shape.
I accessorized with a gold, glittery clutch, a big cocktail ring, and gold lace earrings. I was overdressed compared to the rest of my family, but what’s new there? :-p
What did you wear for Thanksgiving Day?
Just a couple weeks ago I had my 3rd blog birthday. I actually missed noticing it (oopsie), but I thought it would be a great time to see how much things have changed since I started blogging. Looking at my first blog post, I noticed how unsure I was BUT also how hopeful I was. I had already been reading blogs for 3 or so months, and I was so, so excited to begin. I didn’t even post a current picture of myself that month. That October (2010), September of 2012, and this past September (2013) are the ONLY months were I have not posted an outfit shot. I’m pretty impressed with my commitment, even if it’s waned at times. I never imagined that after starting my blog, I’d still be here typing 3 years later. I didn’t imagine that I would have traveled to NYC for FFFWeek twice! Once as an official blogger of the Fashion Front! This blog has brought crazy opportunities my way and even better people. It’s seen me through insecurity and sickness, and it’s where I come back to when I am most inspired and creative. My “About Me” has stayed relatively the same since I started. In it I said, “I’m so excited to offer my voice here, whether it ends up being a soft echo or a loud roar.” This blog has definitely been a “roar” in my life, and the conversations and sharing that’s happened here and in the community have changed me. This blog has seen me through being a grad student, becoming a part-time teacher, and now a full-time lecturer: just growing up. I’m thankful to all of you and my fellow bloggers who I see as dear friends. Wanna see my changes throughout the years? Here’s a photo from every month of this blog (except both Septembers), and each month/year links to the original blog post.
Thanks for reading, commenting, and tweeting with me for the last few years. It’s meant the world to me!
One of my absolute favorite brands to work with is Kiyonna. I joined their
Blogger Brigade before the summer, and since then they’ve dressed me for events at FFFWeek, looks for summer, and even pieces for me to wear to work (I teach at a college). When they asked what I was interested in this past month, I knew I wanted one of their fancier dresses in navy. They have so, so many good semi-formal dresses, and right now a lot of their styles come in navy or a combo of navy and black, such as this knit wrap dress and this bodycon dress. This is their Scalloped Boudoir Dress, which is coincidentally the very first design that I ever bought from the brand — back in 2008! Kiyonna’s clothing always has such great quality, and the love truly is in the details. I put this piece on, and I instantly felt beautiful. It’s just one of those pieces that feels special. Because of that, I wanted to get a little fancier than my typical brick background, and my friend Brittany (who came with me to FFFWeek) used her photography skills to capture the dress.
I wanted all of the attention to be on the dress, so I paired it with light tan heels and this super sweet clutch by Miss Selfridge, which I received at Arcadia’s press day over the summer. I love the light mocha color of the clutch and all of the beading.
Besides the navy color, my favorite detail on this dress is the scalloped hem along the neckline, sleeves, and bottom hem. Again, it’s the extra detail that makes Kiyonna’s clothing so loved.
Taking these photos reminded me how transformative outfit shots are. Sometimes it’s hard to love yourself, and often that gets filtered to your looks because “looks”, whoever’s they are, get criticized so often. My face is fuller than its been in the past, but I still am able to recognize my beauty in these pictures. I loved seeing the photos of me laughing at Brittany. It reminds me that I am loved and have wonderful people in my life. I’m thankful for where blogging has taken me.
Kiyonna Scalloped Boudoir Dress (gifted), New Look heels, Miss Selfridge clutch
Are you loving navy this fall/winter? What’s your current “fancy” dream dress?
I was really excited when I heard the theme for this week’s Out of My Comfort Zone post. I wore horizontal stripes pre-finding fatshion blogs, but once I started finding bloggers, I really, really began loving it. It’s a big revelation when you finally see that you have nixed out various items, patterns, etc just because of old rules heard over and over again. Beka picked this theme, and she reasoned it perfectly:
“I decided on horizontal stripes as I think these can still be seen as something that makes some people feel larger than they are. Well what rubbish! I want to see you all rocking the burglar look!”
I knew immediately that I wanted to wear my City Chic pencil skirt that I bought at the end of the summer season. This skirt is not-so wintery, but if you’re like me, then you are probably used to making mad dashes from a car to a building to avoid the cold :). I paired it with a chambray top, red/coral accessories, and animal print low heels. I have no idea if the shoes make sense, but I thought they were cute in how they clashed, so whatevs
This skirt is a AU 24, which is not at all my pant size, but it fits really well (and I’m not wearing any type of spanx here so if you wanted a smoother look you could get that). I’m not sure if all City Chic skirts run large, but I definitely recommend them for those who have large hips. It’s very rare for me to find pencil skirts that are built for larger hips, as they are usually cut much straighter through the waist and bottom hem.
Besides putting this skirt to its first use, I was also able to wear this Amrita Singh ring that I bought YEARS ago but haven’t worn often. This is also another “rule” breaker because it’s a big ring on a little finger. I have short fingers. I always will. There’s no way I’m going to nix all statement rings because of my short fingers.
Want to see other ways of wearing horizontal stripes? Check out the other OMCZ bloggers below:
Becky Brown http://www.doesmyblogmakemelookfat.com
How do you wear horizontal stripes?
P.S. The next OMCZ challenge’s theme is my pick! Can’t wait to do it
A couple weeks ago, the lovely Stefanie at Dots Fashion contacted me to see if I would like to visit a local store to check out their plus-size line. In the last few years, I’ve become more and more accustomed to shopping online, especially since there are so few brick and mortar plus size stores in my area. Because of that, it was quite the surprise when I realized that there was a Dots location only 7 minutes from my job! I was really excited for an opportunity to actually shop in person with friends. I called up my sister and we planned to head over there last Friday. Unfortunately, she was sick, so I headed over on my own and went crazy with dressing room shots as I tried on many different items from Dots.
When I first arrived, Kanessa, the store manager, introduced herself and showed me to the plus size section of the store. Many of the other sales associates also introduced themselves, and I felt very comfortable right away. They all were happy to be there and seemed excited to help the women shopping come up with different outfits for events. It was really nice to see how large the plus size section was and how the items were actually displayed and not just crammed everywhere like I’m used to. It was obvious that the section have different clothing stories with various styles to appeal to many different shoppers.
Kanessa walked me through the different section and explained who the clothes are geared to. Each section had clothing that could be mixed together to create many different looks, and I did not notice a single item over $30, which is GREAT! I liked the idea that if I wanted something quick, I could come here and find a piece without breaking the bank.
Animal prints, leather, and red: I liked the trench coat above and the red leather-look jacket
Power purple and graphic prints: I liked how they mixed prints with the skirt and scarf
Southwest inspired: Probably the most opposite of my style, but I liked that this section was so different than the others
They also had a moto section, which was my favorite. I ended up getting the vest above!
Low price tag but still detailed designs
Each section mixed items with displays, showing looks pulled together with accessories. The store showed that they know plus size women want to mix pieces in interesting ways and create whole outfits rather than only wearing basics.
After looking through the section, I decided to try on some pieces that caught my eye, and I also tried on some of Kanessa’s suggestions. Dots really takes an active approach in helping customers build outfits, with sales associates suggesting ways of mixing items. This seemed pretty unique to me, because when I worked retail, we were there to help out but we did not work as stylists. Something to note is that Dots’ plus size section sells sizes 1X-3X. On their website, this translates from a 16/18 to a 24/26; however, I found the items to fit me tightly, and I would say that the items fit a lot like Forever21. It’s a bit Junior sizing in my opinion. Because of that, I did not try on any jeans/dresses, but they had a lot of cute ones if you are in that size range.
The first piece I tried on was the Fleece Ruffle Coat in green. I LOVED the color. The coat was soft and warm. It had a bit of stretch, but was ultimately too small for me to purchase for my closet.
I then tried on this cropped animal print top. Top top part of it had a sheer black material. I thought this was really cute, and I could see myself wearing it with a black maxi skirt. This top was paired with red accents, which goes perfectly.
I also tried on this striped cardigan-type top. The print was cuter in person, but I wasn’t sure about the shape. Kanessa suggested the belt below.
I then tried this gray top with a faux leather trim and pocket. Kanessa brought in this print scarf to go with it, which I liked a lot. The print is actually skulls, which I typically shrink away from, but the design of these skulls were fragmented which was cool.
My last pick was the faux leather vest. They had this in 3 different colors, but I went for the charcoal/black one.
As you can see in the picture, it had so many details, but it was still only $26! I ended up picking up this piece for my closet too.
After trying on clothes, I went to the accessories section. They have a lot of shoe styles to choose from. They offer extended calf boots, but they were too small for me (as is every wide calf boot I’ve ever tried).
I really loved these ankle boots on the left with the three buckles. They didn’t fit my ankles, which is again typical, but I know some others who’d love this style.
There was a lot of jewelry to look at. I appreciate the stretchy bracelets and rings so that people of various sizes could wear them.
Stefanie from Dots Fashion had sent me a $50 gift card to use (Thank you, Dots!), so I purchased the faux leather vest, the animal print crop top, and a set of eye shadow colors — all for $54! At many plus size stores, that’s just ONE top.
Kanessa and Kristin, who helped me throughout shopping while also styling other customers at the store.
I’m always going to be a girl who shops around and picks up pieces here and there from many stores, but it was nice to know that there is a store only a few minutes away where I can find items I like and for good prices. What’s even better is that I can visit this store with my family and friends, and we can find pieces in various sizes and styles. If you want to shop at Dots Fashion, check out their Store Locator or you can shop online.
Do you shop at Dots? What are some of your favorite items that they are selling currently?
*Dots Fashion sent me a $50 gift card to use during my visit to their store. The opinions expressed are my own. Thank you, Dots, for inviting me to visit and shop!
It’s finally my favorite time of the year, fashion-wise and everything-else-wise too :). Every weekend there is something really fun to do, and for the last few weeks, I’ve been wearing the heck out of this Evans top as I went to the ren fest, the county fair, and today to a bonfire. I had been wanting to wear the top with a leggings and boots look, but I very rarely actually wear anything tucked into boots. It’s a look I love, but not one I’ve worn before, and I tended to talk myself out of the look thinking it didn’t look “right” or wasn’t my style (whatever that is). I shared a quick pic on Instagram, and everyone told me to go for it, so I finally did!
It ended up being perfect for the bonfire and walking around outside. I love the style of the boots, and I’ve owned them for a year but this is the first I’ve worn them out. Over the past year or so, I’ve become more and more aware of how much the way I dressed as a kid and teen has affected how I dress now. Also, how people dress where I live really affects things. When I go to New York City, I feel more free to wear whatever I want because everyone is dressed differently, but here just wearing a nice top and jeans can be “overdressed” to others. I know that I get to chose whether to dress according to those things or not. I guess that’s what the OMCZ challenges are for!
Evansusa.com top, Old Navy leggings, MIA boots
What’s your fall go-to outfit?