Philosophy in Blue

Although I pursue photography as a creative outlet and enjoy taking pictures of others, I hate having pictures taken of myself.

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That’s hard, considering I’m a makeup artist and kinda, well, have to take pictures of myself in order to sell my services. Selfies are easy, though. It’s just my face. My skills are pretty good. I’m pretty much the selfie queen! I bet y’all don’t know how many I take before y’all see the two or three I ultimately post, though.

It’s a lot more than just two or three, let me tell you.

Is it a confidence issue? Maybe. I was always one who hid as a teenager. Even with all of the work I’ve done to help build myself up, I still use the fact I have such a fancy camera to stay out of pictures.

I mean, someone has to take the pics, right?

At any rate, it’s hard to proclaim myself a fashion blogger and y’all rarely ever get to see me in any fashion.

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I can’t keep allowing myself to hide like this. Even with the strides I’ve made to put myself out there, go out and socialize, make some new friends and have some new experiences…I still shy away from something as simple…as a camera.

Something’s got to give.

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I figure that in some cases, the best thing to do to combat something that scares you is to just do it. I called up a talented photographer friend of mine to come and take some pics of me for the blog. So y’all could see me. So I could really see myself.

And maybe not be so scared.

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Don’t get me wrong. I got some hangups. I looked at the shots like…but my belly. But I’m so wide. But, but, but. Just all types of self-depreciating thoughts flowing through my head. I wouldn’t let anyone close to me speak about themselves like that, but that’s the fun part about internal dialogue. No one knows how I was ripping myself down but me.

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When I got home and got a good look at things, though? I won’t tell y’all I did a 360 on my thoughts. I didn’t. But I can say what I love about myself. I can say I looked amazing. I can say that, when it’s genuine and I’m truly amused, I have a nice smile. When I showed some folks the pictures, I was surprised that the ones I didn’t think were the most flattering were the most popular.

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Like this one of me smiling. Cause with these braces, I don’t. I’m still very self conscious about both them and my teeth. Stephenie, my photographer, said “Okay. Let’s get one of you smiling.” Me: *stare* *skeptic look* Her: “I know, I know. But come on, smile.” I gave her the most half-assed smile I could come up with. She took the pic, and it looked just as tortured as could be. I hate smiling on purpose, I really do. A few minutes later, however, I’m cracking up at something Stephenie said. She seized the moment and snapped.

C says: “Your smile is radiant!”

J, my coworker, goes “That is just a genuine smile! You look so good!”

My coworker looks at the pic and goes, “Your niece has your smile. That’s so cool!”

My niece does have my smile. She’s just adorable.

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Maybe I’m pretty cute, too. I’m getting there. Slowly, but surely.

Outfit details: I’m wearing a really, really old (6-7 years?)Lane Bryant sweater (here’s something similar), Lane Bryant Genius Fit Trouser Jeans, and Nike Sneaker Wedges (on sale!)

Photo Credits: Stephenie Valentino’

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Fatshion Friday: What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve?

I certainly hope you’ll be getting all dolled up and going out for the night! I know I am.

January 1, 2015 I was happily dancing away in a club with my friends, and I’m looking to do that all over again. Now, I told y’all about all my mishaps getting my outfit. This year, I’ve planned way better…I have my outfit already! At least, I have the basics already: I’m doing a romper, tights, and red heels. All I need now are accessories, and next Friday I’ll have a post at the ready with some great ideas for finishing off your look.

But, you need to have the look first, right? Let me show you some of my ideas for an awesome night out at any budget!

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From Ashley Stewart.

I have come a long way from that girl who refused to do a romper or a jumpsuit. I didn’t think they worked for my body type because I carry most of my weight in my belly. Key here is fit. Take the time to try it out if you can, or make sure that there’s some stretch in it if you have to get it online. This look appeals to my practical side (what if I want to twerk a little? Now I’m not gonna be overexposed!) and to my sexy side (love the cut and sparkle). Because I like to define my waist, I’d do a belt with it, but do whatever makes you the most comfortable and makes you feel the most gorgeous.

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From ASOS.

If I had to choose between a romper or a jumpsuit, I’d likely pick the romper because I love my legs. They’re so shapely! ๐Ÿ˜€

Had to have a self-love moment. Sorry, not sorry. ๐Ÿ™‚

I love this because of the embroidery. Because it’s mixed metallics, you could do gold or silver (or both!) jewels with this and a bold shoe. I mean, what better time to sparkle than New Year’s, right?

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From Monif C.

Ok, so maybe the soiree you’re attending doesn’t call for glitz and glam. Or, maybe you’re just not that into sparkle. I love this piece because it can be glammed up or left as is for a subtle elegance that looks good no matter the venue. A statement necklace and a nice heel is all you need to make this complete.

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From Monif C.

Does your night out call for all over sparkle? (Yep, I work in extremes, folks! :D) This dress is perfect. Beautiful cut and enough glittery happiness that calls for minimal extras outside of a nice heel and clutch. I’m all about easy!

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From Jibri.

In need of something dramatic? Bring it on with this number. I don’t normally go for sheer paneling, but I have to say I love how it just gives a little extra coverage without being too heavy. I’d do a metallic shoe and bangles with this because I believe more is more, but styling as seen in the pic is perfect for just enough drama for the evening.

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From Eloquii.

Oh, this dress. Story time!

I had every intention of purchasing this dress for New Year’s, right? I’d planned out the accessories (I was gonna add a bow tie and do red shoes) and everything, and put it in my cart. Y’all. By the time I’d gotten a chance to sign in and place the order, it was all sold out. I stalked the site for a few days, but usually when an item is gone from Eloquii, it’s gone. I sniffled a bit and found something else I liked, and ordered it.

And then…it came back in stock. During a non-pay week, and I’m flying out of town soon.

Sigh.

Oh, well. There’s no reason y’all can’t reap the benefits of the restock! You could style it as I described above, dress it down with a jeweled oxford, throw on some tights and a brightly colored pump, whatever! I love this dress just for its versatility.

And there you have it! My picks for a beautiful and stylish New Year. Next week, I’m going to talk about shoes and accessories for the big night. Happy Weekend!

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Halloween Costumes for the Curvy Girl

Halloween is coming. Do you have your costume yet?

No?

Well. I’m here to help. I’ve said before how much I adore Halloween because of being able to dress up as someone/something else for the night. I still haven’t quite decided what I want to be (and the clock is winding down), but I’m here to remind you that you don’t have to break the bank for a good costume if you don’t want to.

Seriously.

Take my costume last year, for example. We were allowed to dress up at work, and so I wanted to do something safe for work, but still show off my skills. I decided to go as a butterfly garden.

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I didn’t spend any money for this costume!

Everything I wore for this look was in my closet: flower dress, flower necklace, owl earrings. The wings there are printer paper and are stuck on with eyelash glue (get the full story on the look in this post.) It was easy and it looked really good for a last minute idea. ๐Ÿ™‚

In that same vein, you’ll find some of the best inspiration in your closet. Ok, maybe you have a flower dress, but butterflies aren’t your thing. You could also add some wings and be a fairy, just add sparkly makeup. Plain dress? You could be any iteration of cat you can think of, or something else depending on the color of the dress. For example: yellow dress? Add a bow on your right side, and add black eyes and a mouth made of either felt or construction paper. You’re now Ms. Pac Man.

In fact, one of my favorite costume ideas is taking something you already have in the closet and doing some dramatic wigs and makeup to go with it. A couple of suggestions of YouTube tutorials:

I adore her work, and I’m trying to get to her level!

I’ve also seen the dots done with rhinestones instead…just another option. ๐Ÿ™‚

This look is similar to the one I did up there, just with flower petals instead of wings!

Would you rather purchase a costume? Makes sense. It’s a lot easier to a certain extent. Party City, Torrid, and Hips And Curves all have great costume ideas (not an exhaustive list) and rush shipping if you can’t get it in store. Here are a few of my favorites:

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From Party City. I have a Jack Skellington mug, so naturally this costume caught my eye.

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From Torrid. Have a more elegant party? Go as Loki and add some gold horns!

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From Hips and Curves, and my favorite! How fancy is this for a masquerade ball?

Whew! I could talk about fun costumes all day if you let me, but I’ll leave y’all to decide what catches your eye. Besides, I have to come to a decision on what I’m doing for Halloween myself. I’m thinking something with spiders.

See you Friday!

Makeup Looks Shopping

Fatshion Friday: SmartGlamour Body Positive Fashion Show

So, last Friday, I had the opportunity to head out to the city to see a Body Positive Fashion Show that showcased Smart Glamour’s latest collection.

And I thought…body positive? This sounds awesome!

It totally was! There was so much diversity on the runway, from race to body type to height. Everyone looked amazing and I definitely saw some items I could see myself in–mostly because I was able to see myself represented on the runway. And the best part? At the end of the show, when the models did their final walk, they carried signs that read “All bodies are good bodies.” Such an affirming end to an awesome presentation!

Clothing companies? Take note. This is how you appeal to ALL of your customers.

Ok, I’m done preaching. ๐Ÿ˜€ Let’s get to the fashion:

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This burgundy number was my fave look of the night. Doesn’t it scream “holiday party”?

So, remember I needed some help picking out a Lane Bryant outfit? I wore the winner to this event:

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Jacket, Shirt, Jeans, all Lane Bryant. Shoes by JustFab.

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And a closeup! Lipstick is MAC’s Eugenie with a little gloss on top.

So, I basically ended up blending elements from all three outfits. I loved the moto jacket, so I had to have it. I loved the jeans, so I had to have them. And I decided I didn’t want to be too dressy, so this embellished shirt was perfect (and we know how I feel about sparkle!) I did still get those awesome red shoes, though. They’ll be paired with a different outfit I have planned. Thank you all for your input!

Happy weekend, everyone!

 

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New York Fashion Week Plus Recap

Hey y’all!

So, before my internet went all over the place, I had a chance to see some presentations during New York Fashion Week (NYFW).

No, notย thoseย shows (although I’m working on it!) This was a different set of presentations, for plus size fashion. Hence the fancy name: NYFW+.

You already know how here I was for it! ๐Ÿ˜€

So, the shows I went to were different. It wasn’t like your standard runway show. The models walked out, of course, but instead of a strut, they stood and posed. Admittedly, I was a little confused, but it was also pretty cool, because as you went to take pictures, the models would give you your own pose.

So fancy. ๐Ÿ™‚

I know y’all came for the fashion. Let’s get to it!

First up: Eula Taylor of Twelve26.

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This was my favorite look from this collection. Isn’t that just..me?

The accessories she used were fabulous as well. All are by iLLASPARKZ:

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Next up: Ava Jones of Pheline.

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These are pants and I want them!

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I even loved the designer’s personal style (that’s her on the left.) Those are sequined harem pants!

And finally: Marco Hall. His collection was my favorite of the night!

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I need this romper. NEED.

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Stunning, right? Oh, and I looked pretty foxy myself:

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Lipstick is Euginie by MAC, necklace and earrings were $1.50 from a local shop.

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Jumpsuit from Lane Bryant, Shoes from JustFab.

I had an awesome time, and saw some equally awesome fashion!

 

Fashion Show Hair Makeup Looks

Fatshion Sunday: Which Do I Pick?

So, bonus story time!

I was out with one of my very good friends, helping her find an outfit for her dissertation defense. We ultimately decide to stop off at Lane Bryant (the huge one on 34th and 8th) Now, we’re looking at things, trying to find something that matched her aesthetic, and two lovely associates came into the dressing room to help us out.

We end up settling on this awesome backless lace top and skirt combo that is everything and the next thing I know…

“Why don’t you try on some things?”

Now wait. I am NOT here to shop for me! But then he starts bringing me clothes and helping me put together outfits and…

Well…

I do have NYFW+ coming up and I need some outfits for the shows…

Sigh.

I fell for it.

So here’s the thing: I can’t afford ALL ย of the things, but I damn sure know I have to get some of them! So I need y’all, my wonderful readers, to help me pick an outfit! Here are the contenders:

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Option A.

Jacket (coming soon!)/Skinny Jeans/Shoes

I’m not normally a jeans girl, but these skinnies are EVERYTHING. If you want as close a fit as mine, go down a size (they’re super stretchy). The coat was our lovely stylist’s idea; cause I never would have picked it out! But I do like it.

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Option B

Ruana/Skirt/Shoes

So I’m wearing a poncho as a top. And it’s comfy! The shoes hands down have to be my favorite part of this outfit, and the heels aren’t too high. And there’s cushion!

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Option C

Jacket/Tank/Jeans

So, I already bought these shoes (they were on sale!) The jacket is my favorite part of this outfit (size up if you have larger arms like me, as there is little stretch) The jeans were comfy, but I prefer a plainer jean (yes, that’s right!) I adore sparkle, I just wasn’t such a fan of the embellishments here.

Can y’all see the bind I’m in? I want so many pieces, but the way my bank account is set up…

So, I hand it over to y’all. Help, please? Which do you like? Comment and let me know!

Super special shout out to the crew at the 34th and 8th Lane Bryant for styling help and picture snapping! They’re awesome; go see them if you come to visit!

Retail Therapy Shoes Shopping

Fatshion Friday: Fierce and Casual

So, when we last left off, I showed y’all some of the awesome fashion that was shown at last weeks Full Figured Fashion Week Indie Show.

For once, I actually got a chance to snag some pics of my own fashion.

๐Ÿ˜€

So, for the fashion show, I went with classic black. I know, I normally don’t do black unless I’m at work, but this dress had been hanging in my closet collecting dust since January (please don’t judge me), so I figured I’d give it some shine. I paired it with a nice neutral eye, fro picked out and pinned up, and my favorite red lip:

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Dress: ASOS Curve (Sold Out), Shoes: Payless

Now, I had another few pictures of the dress that included more of that super cute bow detail, but let me tell y’all…see, I didn’t check the sheerness of that dress. So, slightly too sheer dress plus insanely bright lighting (for pics!) equals you can see allllllll my shaper and bra, y’all. Just, dammit, man. I think I would have done better to do a black shaper instead of a nude one, but yeah. Don’t be me, y’all. Check that BEFORE you leave your house. This picture was taken away from the theatre lighting near the red carpet, so you can’t see anything.

So, I also got to attend CurvyCon this past weekend as well. I love the idea of shopping and panels and wonderful bloggers in one place. In theory. In practice…well…it was loud, crowded, and not enough seats. I did have fun for the time I was there, and got to meet some awesome folks as well as touch base with some blogger boos. ๐Ÿ™‚

Since I knew I’d be doing a lot of pictures, I didn’t go super fancy. I just wanted to be comfy. So I did sneakers and a cute skirt, and kept my face natural.

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Sneaks from JustFab.

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Skirt from Eloquii (check out theย Midi Skirtsย here!)/Shirt from FeminineFunk

I had a great time last weekend, and looked fabulous doing it!

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