Full Figured Fashion Week: Finale and New Beginnings

So, in yesterday’s post, I mentioned that I made a new friend. Here’s how that happened.

I get to Friday’s fashion show, and due to there being a VIP section, I had to find a place in the back that would allow me to see and take pictures without getting in anyone’s way. I decided upon the back corner of the room, and figured I’d just crop out any errant heads that might be in the pictures.

I’m getting adjusted, trying to get comfortable, and I hear someone ask if anyone was using the seats closest to me. I say no, and D and her sister come to have a seat nearby.

We chat as I take a couple of test shots, and I can see not one blessed thing. D says quietly, “Hmm, maybe we should move so we can see better.” I’d been thinking the same thing, so I go, “Y’all thinking about moving?” She says: “You too?” “Yep, can’t see a thing from here.” So we all shift over a bit to a better viewpoint, and continue the convo.

D is going to start a blog soon, but she was at fashion week to get some information and inspiration. I gave my limited help, and encouragement. I have to say that for me the biggest thing was just to START. I made plans and talked about it, but took forever to get started. Once I got started, and found a way to get comfortable with a regular posting schedule (I like order, so this was a must), everything fell into place. Every comment and like makes me happy, and if at least one person reads my blog and takes one step that helps in their evolution, then I’ve done my job.

I had myself a viewing companion and a new (future!) blogger boo.

Exciting! 🙂

Here we are at the second fashion show:

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I have on a dress ( that was way too short so I made it a shirt) from City Chic, and the skirt my mom sent me. I’d actually had a different outfit planned that night, and spent way too much of my day altering it and creating a sheer jacket to go with it. I realized I’d want on a full bodyshaper with it. It was entirely too hot for that, so I nixed it for this skirt combo instead. I still loved it.

And now: more fashion!

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This was the last Full Figured Fashion Week to be produced by DeVoe Signature Events. I am hoping so much that someone else steps in to take up the mantle. I attended last year and loved it, and attended this year and loved it more.

If I had the money, I’d take it over. It’s such a positive space that showcases the diversity of the plus size community.

And that’s it, folks! All of the coverage from Full Figured Fashion Week. Next week’s posting will be light, as I will be getting everything together for the YouTube premiere (I so cannot wait!)

Happy Weekend!

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Positivity Retail Therapy Shopping Stories

Full Figured Fashion Week: Getting Social

I had some fun both Wednesday and Thursday last week, while doing some fun fashion things. Friday, I had the opportunity to attend Eloquii‘s trunk show and do some socializing.

Let me say, I always thought that as I got older, I would learn how to make friends more easily. I don’t know that I would have called myself shy as a child, but I was definitely apprehensive around new folks. Even now, I’m pretty friendly, but I don’t open up to you fully until I have some time to feel you out. I’m still trying to step out of my shell socially, and it’s hard for me. Particularly if I have to do it alone.

Sometimes, I still don’t quite feel like I fit in.

I went to this trunk show alone. Lord knows, I have the hardest time working a room and being a social butterfly. You’d think, at 29, this would get better. It has, maybe slightly (normally, if I couldn’t find someone to come with me I wouldn’t go at all) since I still went alone, but I was still nervous as I stepped in the room. I shouldn’t have been. Everyone was warm and welcoming as soon as I stepped into the room.

Now, I haven’t been back in the blogging game for long (haven’t even hit a year yet), so I felt a little alone as all of the bloggers who’ve been doing their thing for some time greeted each other with hugs. I was looking at the clothes when I spotted Dionna from Made Me Pretty. Nervously, I walked over to introduce myself, and as soon as I touched her arm, she gave me the biggest smile and hug ever! 🙂

It felt nice to be…wanted. Welcome. A part of the group. Whoa.

I guess to fully experience things, you just have to jump in with both feet.

After exchanging pleasantries, we oohed and ahhed over the new pieces and sipped champagne, then we separated a bit to look around more. There were tarot card readings, and manicures (naturally, mine were already done), and I had on this fabulous purple shift dress from Simply Be:

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This is the one I picked up at the Shop and Swap. A quick note on fit: The sleeves can be tight on those with bigger arms, so you may want to go up a size to accommodate.

After we had a lot of fun nibbling on treats and sipping drinks, we needed to head out to the fashion show. But first, we had to take a selfie:

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Once we got to the venue, of course I had to get a picture of the scenery:

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And then out came some amazing fashion. I’m just sharing a few looks here, cause we’d be here all day (400+ pics, y’all. Seriously.)

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I had such a good time!

While I was at Friday’s show, I also made myself another new friend, one who hasn’t started blogging, but was happy to soak up some of my suggestions. More on that (and more fashion!) tomorrow. 🙂

Positivity Retail Therapy Shopping Stories

Fatshion Friday: I Wear What I Want

I wear what I want.

Even if it scares me, even if people think I shouldn’t.

I wear what I want.

Yesterday, I went to FFF Week’s trunk show, and got to meet some lovely designers (and a baker), and I wore my new shirt from Feminine Funk. This is the one I picked up at Wednesday’s event, and spoke so cryptically about yesterday.

I cannot tell you how many compliments I received. I love this shirt to itty bitty pieces.

The kicker?

It’s a crop top.

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I never in a million years thought that I would do a crop top. It’s a look that I covet but never thought I would be able to pull off. But bolder looks, like hair and makeup, take confidence to pull it off. If you think sexy, you are. Words to live by. Now, I put a vest on with the outfit because I was worried about my love handles being out–a great option if, like me, you want to take baby steps towards such a bold statement. And as I walked the New York streets, as I walked around the trunk show, everyone loved the statement.

I wear what I want.

Including wearing my hair free and lavender lippy:

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My hair is much shorter than it was before and I love it so! The lip is a combo of bright blue lipstick and pink gloss.

Anyone can wear anything. It’s all about finding a look that speaks to you and makes you happy.

So, join me. And wear what you want. 🙂

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In Remembrance of Dr. Maya Angelou

I was in 7th grade when I was first exposed to Dr. Angelou’s work. For most students, the first (and possibly only) work they read by her is I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings.

The first work I read by her was a poem: Phenomenal Woman.

This work came to me in a time where most teenagers are reaching that awkward stage. You aspire to look, and be the same as your peers, and when you can’t realize that aspiration, it becomes about you as opposed to society’s backwards thinking. You don’t know you can be a rebel.

We were preparing for the Black History Month program at school, and they wanted people to write and perform poems. I had a couple of pieces written, but my drama teacher brought me a new poem. I looked it over. I thought to myself, man, this is so good! But this is really long, can I do this? Do I even believe myself to be a phenomenal woman? What does that even mean?

My teacher sensed the skepticism. “You can do this. If I didn’t trust you to do this, I wouldn’t have brought it to you. Let the words marinate, and we’ll start practice tomorrow after lunch.”

I nodded, and took it home to read again.

Here it is, for those who haven’t read it:

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I’m telling lies.
I say,
It’s in the reach of my arms,
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

 

I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It’s the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.

 

Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

 

Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can’t touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them,
They say they still can’t see.
I say,
It’s in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

 

Now you understand
Just why my head’s not bowed.
I don’t shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing,
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It’s in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
The need for my care.
’Cause I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.
When my mom came home from work that night and saw what I was reading, she was excited. She asked if I would be performing it. I nodded, trying to convince myself I could do it. Look at that poem, I thought. How can I be any of those things? I’m fat, I have bad skin, I have crooked teeth. Nothing about me is phenomenal, unless you’re describing “ugly”. But my teacher trusted me with this, so I will do it.
“You sure?” my mom asked? I nodded again, “Yes, I am. I can do it.”
I practiced and practiced that poem. I had the cadence down pat. I don’t know if I started to believe it or not, but I thought that hey, maybe this could be me. Maybe this could apply to me in certain cases. And that was enough to keep me going.
The day of the program, we had some great performances. The students were pretty bored in the stands, but happy to be free of class for a couple of hours.
Then it was my turn.
I hate public speaking. I hate it so much, because I get stage fright like you wouldn’t believe. And here I am, 12 years old, staring at the entire school in the bleachers. And they’re staring back. I felt my hand shake a bit on my way to the podium. “You don’t have to come from behind the podium if you don’t want,” my teacher whispered in my ear. I nodded, petrified. But when I got to the podium, I put my notes on top, and came around the front.
And I performed. This wasn’t just reciting. This was a performance, hand movements, gestures, slowly walking back and forth before the students.
I never practiced that. It just came. I don’t know if it was nerves or Dr. Angelou’s spirit covering me in that moment, but I felt like every word was being absorbed into my soul. Every move kept these students engaged, and by the time I finished, I had a standing ovation. My drama teacher was ecstatic. My other teachers were in shock.
So was I.
I’d always loved the written word in any form, but it was then that I understood how much it could touch others. And I knew that not only did I want to be a lawyer, I wanted to write as well. I wanted to do spoken word, and touch people with my writing as Dr. Angelou’s writing has touched me.
Try to be a rainbow in someone’s cloud.
Thank you, Dr. Maya Angelou, for being a rainbow in mine.
Heartbreak Positivity Stories

Stepping Out of My Comfort Zone

In continuation of my going bold theme, I took some time to take a look at some things that scare me.

Things that scare me in both fashion and in beauty.

Things that I don’t do because I always have a set of rules that say why I can’t, but I ignore the one reason I can:

Because I want to.

So much passes me by because I think it won’t be flattering or that I have no business wearing it because I’m not “built properly” to rock it.

An example: I never really got on board with the whole jumpsuit thing. I kept seeing them everywhere, and I’m all “Someone like me with a belly has NO BUSINESS  wearing that!” And then I bought a bodycon dress for my birthday dinner. Technically, it’s along the same lines of what I “shouldn’t” be wearing: I have a belly. I should be dressing to camouflage my belly, cause that’s what conventional fat girl fashion wisdom says. At the same time, I have to understand that for as long as I’ve been on this earth, I have had a belly. It isn’t gonna disappear in a larger dress or shirt or whatever. So I can keep trying to hide it and let some good fashion pass me by yet again, or I could just rock the thing.

I felt amazing in my dress. No regrets.

So, by association, I ought to be able to wear a jumpsuit or romper and feel just as amazing, right?

This week’s postings will focus on trends that scare me. Either because it isn’t something I’d normally do, or because it’s something I’ve been trained that I’m not supposed to do.

And for fun, here’s a pic of me in a lipstick color most folks have trouble with: red!

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This is the MAC Viva Glam Rihanna lipstick and lipglass.

See you tomorrow with a new Nail Adventure!

Makeup Looks Positivity

Fatshion Friday: The Birthday Outfit!

Last Wednesday, I celebrated my 29th birthday. Since the weather was less than ideal that day (yay pouring rain!), I postponed my dinner to this week so we wouldn’t need a rowboat to get around.

I’m glad I did.

We went to City Island for dinner, to a really nice hibachi restaurant where I ate all of the seafood and gyoza I could hold.

Mmm. 🙂

And of course, I did it quite fashionably.

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I went with the Floral Print Scuba Dress from Eloquii. Now, I normally don’t do bodycon dresses, as I am still self conscious about my belly. But I decided to let that go. At the end of the day, my belly is there no matter what, so I’m gonna wear what makes me happy! 🙂 It’s very comfortable, and if you decide to do a shaper (I have a Spanx on here), you aren’t able to see it through the dress.

My shoes are from JustFab. They’re called Kacie, and can we talk about how sexy this shoe is? Cause, really. 4 1/2 inches, and they only started to get uncomfortable for me towards the end of the evening (I have a bad ankle, and me and spiked heels often don’t play nice…but I had to have this pair!)

And I still ended up carrying the Darby Smart clutch I made, because it’s so cute. It worked with the outfit after all! The cuff was overkill, though, so that will have to be for the next outfit.

My coat is from Old Navy. I didn’t really need it, as it wasn’t too cold, but it was a bit breezy so I’m glad I had it.

My hair is in a high puff with a few curls on the side…simple and quick, because I kept going round and round on what to do with it. Fun fact: if you manage to break your elastic, an old knee high stocking does the trick as well. My makeup is neutral since everything else was so colorful. I used the Stila Dare to Bare palette here, and Kitten lip glaze.

And there you have it! Still continuing to step outside this box of mine and fully enjoy the world of style out there.

Have a lovely weekend, y’all!

Hair Positivity Shoes Shopping

Taking Up Space

Author’s Note: With all the talk of going bold this week, I figured I’d share this piece from my idea journal. NSFW language in here.

I’ve made it a point to shrink. I don’t want to take up space.

Being fat will do that to you.

I don’t want to draw attention.

My love of bright color is tempered during the week. An all black wardrobe doesn’t turn heads; a neutral eye and lip color palette doesn’t raise an eyebrow.

I’m exhausted, but I don’t want to take that seat. I don’t want to inconvenience those I have to sit next to. If I can’t estimate I can fit, I’ll stand for the whole 45 minute ride home.

And if I do sit, I squish into my seat, hoping I don’t encroach on someone else’s space. Arms folded, bag held against me or resting on my feet so that even my bag doesn’t take unnecessary room.

But I take up space, no matter what I do.

My hair, whether in a high puff, free, or pinned, takes up more space. If I am off and have on loud lipstick or bright shadow, even if I am in the most neutral of outfits, I am noticed. Sometimes people express their admiration with a smile; their dissension with a raised brow. I pat my hair self-consciously. It flattens, then springs back to life, reaching full height.

I still take up space. No matter what I do.

It’s something like springtime. It’s getting warmer; soon it will be hot. I set my arms free, full and squishy. I go to yoga class and stretch them skyward in Warrior 1. I spread them wide in Warrior 2. I notice the fat hanging. I fling them back in Warrior 3; take flight.

Easy to fly when you can’t see the “problem”, right?

I work hard to stay on my mat; keep my mind on my practice.

Taking up space. No matter what I do.

I can’t help taking up space. I’m done apologizing for it–whether it’s changing my outfit because “no one wants to see all that” to putting on all neutral makeup forever and ever amen because I don’t deserve color.

I don’t deserve to take up space. I don’t deserve to demand it.

I reject that shit.

I deserve space, I deserve to take it up, I deserve to adorn myself as I please and take up as much space as I need.

As much as I desire.

Don’t like it? Then move and create your own space elsewhere. Leave me to mine.

I’ll still be here. Taking up space.

Deal with it.

Dedicated to those who need an ego boost this week.

Positivity Stories