Casual Friday: Plus Friendly

TGIF all!

Sorry I’ve been out of the blogging loop lately. A week ago I had to make the heart wrenching decision to have my beloved cat Picachu euthanized. So needless to say I wasn’t in the mood to blog about anything.  I miss my baby but  I know she is in a better place and is no longer suffering.

Today I’m sharing  my tips on how to buy from my favorite “plus friendly” retailers.  My favorite big girl friendly stores are the Gap, H&M, Old Navy and  Loft. Why? Because I try not allow my size to limit my fashion choices.  As plus size women we have to get creative with our wardrobes so branching out to non plus size retailers was inevitable. Once you know how to look for plus friendly clothes, you’ll waltz into your local stores without any hesitation (P.S.   J Crew, Boden USA and Ann Taylor also carry sizes 18-20 online).

Here are some of my tips:

1. Elastane : stretch in clothing is key so look for items that have more than 2% elastane in them. The higher percentage of elastane in a garment, the more stretch it will have.

2. Elastic waists: I know elastic waists are frowned down upon but they comfortably adjust to your waist. In the pic below  I’m wearing an XL elastic waist skirt from Loft which fits my size 20 waist just fine. Also Old Navy XXL elastic waist skirts can easily accommodate waists that are above a size 20.

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3. Dolman sleeves: Dolman sleeves are defined as a full sleeve that is wide in the armhole and narrow at the wrist.  This cut is very forgiving for big arms .  Many dolman sleeved tops are made with stretchy materials so you’re not constricted.

4. A Line Skirts: An A line skirt can be your best friend.  When I shop “straight” stores pencil skirts don’t fit of because my juicy hips BUT an A line skirt does because it skims (not hugs)  your hips.

5. Read The  Reviews: I always read the reviews when I shop online.  The reviews give me insight on how others are experiencing the garment. Reviews that talk about an item being roomy or “size down, it’s big”, I zone in it and order the largest size because 9 times out of 10, the garment fits.

6. Try It On: What do you have to lose? The only thing that can happen is that it doesn’t fit! Over the July 4th weekend I went into H&M and tried on this size 14 palm print shirt (in the pic below) and guess what…it fit perfectly!

What are some of your favorite “plus friendly” stores and tips for shopping non plus size retailers?

Have a wonderful weekend!

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Skirt: Gap (sold out in XL & XXL)
Shirt: H&M (size 14; not online; in stores)
Sandals: New Look via ASOS
Bag: Old Navy (old)

Right To Bare Arms….Or Not!

Happy Monday all!

Going sleeveless can invoke “Jaws” like fear in some women but for others it’s not a big deal. It’s perfectly fine if you choose not to go sleeveless. I’m a firm believer that you should wear clothing that makes YOU feel comfortable.  Deciding not  to go sleeveless doesn’t mean you don’t love yourself any less than someone who does. Your particular clothing preferences have very little to do with self acceptance.  Anyone can put on a fabulous outfit to diguise how they truly feel about themselves.   At the end of the day, it’s more important that you feel good about yourself no matter what you wear. So feel free to exercise your right to bare arms or not!

Have a wonderful day!

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Dress: eShakti (old)
Shirt: Old Navy (old)
Shoes: DV Dolce Vita (here)
Bag: Gap (here)

Casual Friday: Check Your Fear At The Gate

TGIF all!

On Wednesday I stumbled across this great post from Black Girl Fly “I’m Not Sorry For Traveling While Fat” and it struck a deep cord within me. For the past 10 years I have been fortunate enough to travel to multiple counties such as Great Britain, Brazil and Grand Cayman.  Never once was my weight an issue when it came to travel.  My only travel hindrance was who would go with me and if I had enough Xanax to get through the flight!  Even when I hated my body, I still traveled. Traveling makes me extremely happy and content. The night before a vacation, I’m too excited  to sleep. Once I land at my destination,  I cant wait to get off the plan to explore what that country has to offer.

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My deep love of travel comes from my mother Betty who passed away in 1999.  Prior to her death, my mom (who was also a plus sized woman) traveled to multiple countries.  Never once did I hear her complain about her size and travel.  My mom would ask for a seat belt extension and keep it moving! She didn’t let her size stop her from seeing the world.  My mom was adamant that her children not allow our color and size to stop us from taking advantage of life.  Whenever I go away I always say to myself “Mommy would have have loved this”.  I travel in her memory and to keep her spirit alive inside me.

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I completely understand there are plus size women who are afraid to travel because of their size. I get it because I used to fear travel too but something inside me one day said “STOP IT!”. Fear is a bitch and I still have my struggles but I won’t let it stop me from seeing the world.  Our size doesn’t determine our worth as a person. I’m not going to stop living my life because of fear of what someone might think about me. I have absolutely no control over their opinion.  What I do have control over is me and I refuse to let anything get in the way of my need to travel.

So Morocco, Spain and South Africa get ready….you’re next on my list!

Have a wonderful weekend!

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Curvy Con Recap

Happy Tuesday all!

Over the past weekend, my bloggers boos and I met up in NYC to attend Curvy Con (see my post here).  I had such an amazing time attending the event, hanging with my girls in the city and meeting some of my favorite plus size bloggers such as My Curves And Curls (all the way from Toronto!), Pretty Plus Pep, Sometimes Glam and  Beauticurve. It was empowering to be in a room filled with gorgeous plus size women proud and unapologetic about  celebrating their bodies.  But the biggest highlight for me at Curvy Con was meeting women who follow my blog. My heart was so full of gratitude for the love these women showed me.  I wish I could have met you all at Curvy Con so I could thank you for your support!

Congratulations Chasity & CeCe for putting together a wonderful event. I’m definitely looking forward to attending Curvy Con next year.  I hope to see you there!

Have a wonderful day!

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Here are some of my outfits from the weekend:

curvy, curvy women, curvy girls, curvy con, geometric print, ann taylor loft, midi skirt, black & white, white pumps, plus size fashion, plus size clothing, plus size fashion blogs, plus size fashion bloggers, curvy blogs, curvy bloggers, plus size women, grown and curvy woman, grown and curvy woman blog, curvy bloggers, curvy black blogs, curvy blog, jumpsuits, plus size jumpsuits, denim jumpsuit, modamix, gingham, summer trends, jibri, midi dresses, plus size dresses, jibri dresses, ankle strap heels, midi heels, kitten heels, natural hair, black women natural hair Top: Ann Taylor Loft (sold out in XL & XXL)
Skirt: Ann Taylor Loft (sold out in in XL & XXL)
Shoes: Marc Fisher (old)
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Shoes: Chinese Laundry (here)
Bag: Zara (bought in store)
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Jumpsuit: c/o Modamix
Shirt: Ann Taylor Loft (here)
Sandals: Ann Taylor Loft (here)

Casual Friday: Love Conquers All

TGIF all!

In this world where hatred and evil reside, the human spirit still flourishes and heals its self.  The events in Charleston, SC have shaken me to the core just like the Sandy Hook and the Virginia Tech shootings.  My heart is heavy with sorrow for the victims and their families.  When evil manifests itself in such horrific acts, I tend to cling closer to my family and friends. Initially this post was going to be about how my blogger boo Sandra from La Pecosa Preciosa inspired my outfit today but I want to shift away from that.  I want to talk about how in less than a years time, Sandra has become my sister from another mother. There isn’t a day that goes by that we don’t speak to one another (trust me if I don’t Snapchat her in the AM, she is on me! LOL).  Sandra always has my back and is completely accepting of me and my quirky ways.  She is truly beautiful inside and out. I love her so much and feel enormously blessed to have her in my life.

So today tell your husband/wife/GF/BF/partner or life mate you love them, banish negative thoughts,  hold your kids a second longer, call your mom or sister and say “I appreciate you”. Help me show that love does conquer all!

Have a wonderful weekend!

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Skirt: custom from Suite

Blouse: Old Navy (here)
Shoes: Nine West (old)
Bag: Tory Burch (here)