Sunset on 30

I’ll be 31 in three days.

Hmm.

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Sunshine and melanin.

Last year, I was getting ready to turn 30. I had a lot of expectations for myself that I was supposed to reach before I turned 30.

I was supposed to be a lawyer.

I was supposed to be married.

I was supposed to have children.

I was supposed to have a Master’s degree.

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But do I HAVE to take this pic, though?

Since I’d done none of these things by 30, I felt as though I really didn’t have too much to show. Like, what am I even doing with my life?

I’m not a lawyer.

I’m not married.

No children.

Can’t even decide what to study to get a Master’s degree.

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Smile!

However…

I made new, wonderful friends.

I co-own a business.

I’m getting published.

I’ve tapped into my creativity in ways I’d never done before.

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Grass + bare feet= happiness

Most importantly…

I’m happy. I’m the happiest I’ve been in a while.

I’ve learned that success is measured by different factors.

I’ve learned that all accomplishments should be celebrated.

I’ve learned it’s important to never stop believing wonderful things can happen for you.

I’ve learned how to really embrace me and all of my facets.

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Here is my fierce. Let me show you it.

30 has been so good to me. I can’t wait for what 31 brings.

Happy birthday to me. 🙂

Photo credits go to my wonderful business partner, friend, and lil sis Stephenie Valentino. See more of our work on our Instagram!

Positivity Stories

Fatshion Friday: Bathing Beauties

As you read this, I’m still throwing things in a bag for vacation.

Why yes, I told y’all I was prepping for this two weeks ago, and I’m still not done. Please don’t judge me!

😀

Anyway.

In celebration of me making the move to a warmer climate for a few days, I thought I’d put together a lookbook of some of the best styles I’ve seen so far. I was never really a bathing suit girl; deciding for the most part to stick with a tank and shorts. Coupled with the fact that I can’t swim, I figured there was no real need for a suit.

Well, lo these many years later, and I still can’t swim, but I love the beach, swimming pool (the shallow end), and hot tubs. I also have discovered how much I love being as close to naked as I can get in public, so bathing suits are a must. I shared a while ago one of the suits I’m bringing with me on my trip, and now I’m going to show you some other options.

Let’s get to it!

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From Swimsuits For All.

I prefer suits that are not basic black. In fact, if I can find it in as many loud colors as possible, it’s probably going to go home with me. I also prefer a top with some support, particularly because my boobs aren’t that big. If they aren’t big, they’re at least gonna sit up high–so this suit fits the bill! Bonus: it comes as a set (!!!!) and you can order different sizes for the top and bottom for the perfect fit. I actually have the one piece version of this, but sadly, it’s sold out (can’t even find it online anymore!)

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From Forever 21.

Like your suit strapless? This will be spectacular for you! I also love the peplum because this helps to add a little more camouflage to the belly if that’s your preference.

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From Swimsuits For All.

This colorful number has all of the straps and all of the colors. There’s a two piece version of this suit, which you can find here. I can’t decide which style I want, but this pattern is next on the list!

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From Forever 21. Top and Bottom sold separately.

Doesn’t this look like some fancy lingerie? That’s what initially drew me to this set. It’s beautiful and strappy, and even though you have to purchase each piece separately it isn’t ridiculously priced.

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From Monif C.

Hello, gorgeous! This would be my pool party suit–do you see how fierce she looks with those heels? OMG. I’d be working the party and you couldn’t tell me a thing! And I’d be sipping my drink while I sashayed, honey.

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From Ashley Stewart.

And what’s a post on bathing suits without something pretty to cover them up? I know, your bathing suit is fierce, but you may not want to wear it out to brunch. This pretty number keeps you pretty and covered till it’s time to strip back down and lay on the sand.

And there you have it! Some of the suits I’m loving for the season. Here’s a question for y’all: bikini or one piece? Tweet me @fashion_amateur with your answers!

Happy Weekend!

Retail Therapy Shopping

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

Quick Hit: Full Figured Fashion Week Recaps

Hello, lovelies!

I have so many pictures and looks to share with y’all from Full Figured Fashion Week!

I will be dedicating this week to all of the fun activities, makeup looks, people, and fashion I experienced all last week.

I would have started today, but I had absolutely no idea how many pictures I ended up taking last week.

Well over 400.

Yes.

Really.

About half of that are from the two fashion shows I attended, so you know those posts will be EPIC!

Get ready!

So as to make waiting worth your while, here’s a picture I took while attending Eloquii’s trunk show last week:

Gorgeous view, right?

See you tomorrow!

Blog Stuff

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. 🙂

Hair Makeup Looks Positivity Shopping

Fatshionista Vacation: Full Figured Fashion Week: Shoe Catastrophe

Wednesday, I spent the day soaking up some good plus size fashion.

Full Figured Fashion Week (FFF Week hereafter) started Monday, but my first day of events was yesterday.

So, yesterday morning, I headed into the city to attend a seminar on social media. It covered how to work it and how to make it work for you: approaching brands and how to build your own brand.

It was hosted by Marie Denee of The Curvy Fashionista, and the panel included some top brands and bloggers in the game:

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It was highly informative, and I will be using what I learned to make this blog even better for y’all. 🙂

The shoe catastrophe happened on the way to the venue.

So I’m walking down the block in a pair of espadrilles I’ve had for years. As I get to the building, I hear a soft, but still audible, rip. I pause.

I’ll mention here I had to come through a construction site to get to the venue.

Now, I’m thinking I have ripped my dress. I start to panic and feel myself up on the pavement, checking for skin showing that ought not be. Nothing. Hmm, odd. Maybe it wasn’t me.

I take a step and feel a “flop” against my heel.

These are not flip flops I had on. These were heels. I look down.

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Damn it. Sigh. 😦 I love these shoes, but the left one was completely wrecked. Luckily, I had a pair of actual flip flops in my bag. After the seminar, I decided to stop and pick up some glue to repair my shoe. I then got a good look at the right one. It’s starting to come apart too! Unbelievable.

The heat yesterday would not have allowed the glue to set properly, and I had another event to get to. So what did I do instead?

I stopped by Payless and got some new shoes:

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I wanted them in this cool aqua, but they didn’t have my size. 😦 Neutral worked just as well. With new shoes on, I headed to my second event: Curves Rule Everything Around Me (CREAM) Pop Up Shop. Presented by Nicole Grier of Feminine Funk. It was hosted by Chante of Everything Curvy and Chic and Peggy of On the Q Train. It was an evening of shopping, food, and drinks:

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I had the honor of meeting the owner of Black Sheep Cosmetics, and I was her very first customer! The whole crew was super sweet, and I can’t wait to show off the blue lipstick I purchased.

Tonight is the Curves in the City trunk show, and I am excited to wear an outfit that scares me to death but looks good at the same time.

No spoilers! Unless you follow me on Instagram. 🙂

See you tomorrow!

Shoes Stories

Fatshionista Vacation: Shop and Swap!

When we last left off of my vacation adventures, I’d gotten my hair done up all fancy.

Saturday, I got to go out and enjoy the warm weather at a Shop and Swap!

Kellie from And I Get Dressed hosted the event, and it was all about some fabulous bloggers selling some of their beautiful pieces, as well as seeing some new items from different brands.

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I figured it was as good a time as any to take my camera out for a test drive. I still have some kinks to work out (why did I put the date on these pics?!), but I have to say: LOVE!

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I was handed a shopping bag, and off I went to peruse the racks. I love how spacious the venue was. We were all able to look around without feeling squished (and I don’t do well with squished.) Every blogger there was super sweet and posed for pics with all who asked. I was a bit too shy to ask for a picture, but I took pics of some amazing pieces:

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Y’all, I really wanted that shoe. Curse these too big feet!

There were also retailers there. I stopped by the Fashion to Figure table to take a look at their summer collection:

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And by Eloquii to see some of their new products:

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I’m like a magpie y’all; I adore me some sparkle (it comes in other colors as well). I couldn’t get a pic of their gorgeous yellow skirt because everyone wanted to try it on (and it’s as beautiful in person too. Get it while you can!)

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ModCloth gave away 30 dresses(!). And that pretty blue and white one on the table there? I won it! It has the alphabet all over it and bonus: it has pockets!

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So, SimplyBe was there as well. They had a deal going where if you Instagrammed an item (see above), you could get your pick of their collection for free. If you also followed them on Instagram, you could take a second. The shoes did not fit (big feet problems), but I scored two dresses instead!

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I picked up two rings from Kellie’s collection, and a black playsuit from Margie’s collection. Basically, I left with two bags of happiness:

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And a really cute pic from the photo booth:

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Big smile! My dress is from Old Navy.

Oh, I know y’all want pics of all of the clothing.

Nope. Gotta wait. I’m wearing them all later on for FFF Week! 🙂

Retail Therapy Shopping