On Wednesday morning, Nicole and I woke up early to attend the “My Curves, My Style” panel and the “Blogger 101” workshop. I was interested to see how these events went because I’ve never attended any type of conference/event that was specifically about doing the thing I like to do.

I have to admit that I bought my ticket for the “My Curves, My Style” event just because Leslie Medlik was one of the speakers. I loved her on Big Sexy (doublechinwin) and wanted to hear what she had to say about style. I did not know the other presenters previous to attending the panel, but I really thought they were all interesting in their own perspectives and doing really cool things in the plus size world: Kendra Porter, Sherri Collins, and Marcy Guevara.

Marcy, Kendra, and Leslie

While the panel was geared more towards women who were still operating under self-imposed and society-imposed “fashion rules”, I still learned some interesting things about what to look for when looking at the construction of a garment. The panel had some staple philosophies that I’ve heard around the blogosphere like “try things on!” and “get friendly with a tailor”.

Kendra Porter talked about shopping with your body shape in mind

Leslie Medlik talked about vintage fashion

Sherri said the thing that spoke to my current style situation the most. She said, “Plus size fashion has gone beyond access. Now it’s about personal style; we have choices!” While I don’t think we ALL have access, it’s true that I have more choices than I’ve ever had before. Sometimes that’s amazing, and sometimes it’s overwhelming. Previously, my style was dictated by what I could find. I still sometimes go shopping and buy things just because I’ve never seen it in plus sizes before. So how do I carve out my style when I’m suddenly getting choices? I think it’s hard to navigate. I know what I respond positively to, but do I have a specific style? As for now, I’m happy playing around in my choices :).

After the first panel, Nicole and I went down to have a quick lunch (where I paid $20 for 4 crappy chicken tenders–hrmf), and then we hurried back up for the “Blogging 101” workshop. It was definitely a packed room, and I spotted some bloggers I knew plus other big names in the plus size fashion world.

I spy Olivia, Jill from Sonsi, and Georgette!

I sat in the front row, so I got an up close view of the superstar panel.

Marie Denee of The Curvy Fashionista was the moderator, Marina Zelner – designer of Queen Grace, Alissa of Stylish Curves, and Madeline Figueroa Jones- editor-in-chief of Plus Model Magazine

I really enjoyed hearing these women talk from their personal perspectives about what has and has not worked out for them. Certain themes kept coming up, ones I hope I keep on this blog: Staying true to your ethics, being socially responsible, and being supportive to other bloggers.

I was realllllly excited to meet Alissa. I’ve been reading her blog since I started, and she’s one of those bloggers who makes sure to read others’ blogs and comment. I really appreciated it when I was only getting about 50 views a day, and she still took the time to comment on posts.  (P.S. Her outfit is fabulous! Look at her shoes!)

I had to get a picture with Marie even though we had met briefly a few days prior. She’s one of those really warm people that immediately puts you at ease. She’s not only genuinely nice, but someone who honestly wants to get to know you and make you included in the plus size fashion events. I enjoyed every talk with her!

I also got to finally meet Georgette! I’ve enjoyed her blog from its very beginning, and she has an amazing sense of style that she’s constantly pushing at and surprising me. Definitely a blogger you need to check out!

After the sessions, Nicole and I headed out to take some quick OOTD pictures. I originally was going to wear an animal print belt, but ended up with only channeling our Five Take theme through my shoes. Five Take is not easy when you don’t have your entire wardrobe with you!

 Oh, New York City. Where street style pictures have the occasional mountain of trash in the background 😉

My Aldo ring mimics animal print patterns.

Check out Becky, Claire, and Gina‘s animal print posts. I don’t think Nicole has posted hers yet, but I’ll link it when she does!

Overall, the panels were really interesting to me because I loved hearing from women whose work I admired. Living in North Carolina, I don’t get to talk in person with anyone else involved in plus size blogging or the corporate world. It was great being in a room of women who shared that passion with me.

Do you think Sherri’s quote rings true for you? 

“Plus size fashion has gone beyond access. Now it’s about personal style; we have choices!”