Girl Geek In A Dress

The beauty and fashion adventures of a plus-sized girl geek

Girl Geek In A Dress - The beauty and fashion adventures of a plus-sized girl geek

Perks of the #Bloggerlife – Brunch at Neighbourhood

An Invitation To Brunch

While there is a lot of work and effort that has to go into blogging it obviously has its perks. What I am writing about today is, next to an excuse for impulse buys and shopping sprees despite being broke, one of the prime example of those perks: An invitation to brunch – yum!

Neighbourhood

Neighbourhood is a Manhatten style bar and restaurant and offers modern European and US-influenced food. It has recently undergone major renovations and menu updates and to celebrate the new brunch menu and so they invited some local bloggers to taste some of their yummy new brunch dishes.

Brunch! Yum!

We got to taste some absolutely yummy american style pancakes, which are extra thick pancakes in a little stack just as you always see in all those american programs and films. Usually I am more of a thin pancake or even Crepe kind of girl but those were amazing, I have not hat pancakes as fluffy as these in a long time.

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American Pancakes

This was followed by a luxury version of the good old british classic of sausage & egg butty which can be described in only one word. YUM!

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Luxury Sausage & Egg

And the final dish was for each of us our personal choice of eggs from simple scrambled eggs over poached eggs with avocado to eggs benedict and more. I always wanted to try eggs benedict so I grabbed the chance, although with a little twist. Neighbourhood is not only offering the classic but also an adapted version called eggs norwegian exchanging the classic bacon with salmon – this does not only sound like a dream it really is amazing.

Neighbourhood Brunch - Eggs Norwegian

Eggs Norwegian

Bottomless Mimosas

For the ordinary mortal the brunch at Neighbourhood comes with two courses and is served every Saturday from 10am – 2pm for £35 pp. The food is  delicious & to put the cherry on top it also comes with bottomless mimosas, bloody marys and obviously unlimited refill coffee (including cappuccino etc.) – so it’s all in all absolutely perfect for a catch up with the girls.

Brunch at Neighbourhood - Bottomless Prosecco, Mimosas & Coffee

Bottomless Mimosas, Prosecco & Coffee

Lana from Lindy Bop – My OOTD

For a posh brunch like this, I wore one of my recent favourite dresses which obviously is once again a vintage dress – the Lindy Bop Lana Dress in a Size 26. The great thing about this dress is that it also comes in many different prints, however like with most Lindy Bop dresses you have to be a bit careful about the sizing as it runs a little bits small.

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What Do You Love About Brunch?

What do you love about brunch? Do you know another great place for brunch?

Lots of love

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Feeling Like A Princess – With Florentyna Dawn

Florentyna Dawn Title Pic

Special Occassions – A Time You Should Feel Amazing

When attending a special occasion it is just so so important not only to finds a dress that looks great but to also in which one feels comfortable. Although what am I saying here, more than comfortable, one should feel a million bucks and struggle to avoid mirrors and other shiny surfaces as you love the sight of yourself so much. It is a time when you should feel amazing and it is a shame if an outfit you don’t like should be the thing ruining how you feel.

As much as this holds true as a wedding guest or similar, but especially when attending a once in a lifetime event like your prom, your daughters wedding or maybe even your own wedding it is more than only important, it is crucial.

Making Do – The Issue With Ill-Fitting & Boring Dresses

It is a real shame how much we plus-size ladies have to make do with mediocre and ill-fitting dresses on occasions like this. Might it be just because there is hardly any choice or that clothes were so hard to find our compromise arrived last minute and there is just no time to exchange it or finally the worst case when we did not find anything at all. In this case we are presented with the choice of not going or we often make do with any day dress we can find that we can somehow pass on as evening dress.

I Hated My Graduation “Dress”

I do think back to my graduation ball (Abiball). This is one of the rare occasions in German everyday life where you have an excuse to dress yourself up to the nines.While other girls usually attend the dance in lovely flowy evening gowns, I was forced to wear a more or less tight chinese print tunic over black trousers. This was the best I could find after a 6-month search. I don’t think there are even any pictures of myself in that outfit I hated it so much…

Florentyna Dawn – One Of The Rare Truly Size Inclusive Boutiques

Florentyna Dawn - Plus Size Special Occassion & Mother Of The Bride Wear

Experiences like this are what make me appreciate little gems and exceptions from the norm like Florentyna Dawn so much. Florentyna Dawn is one of the rare shops that are truly size inclusive and body-positive. Without question, they are offering all their dresses in a size 6-50+. Yes the plus means that even the 50 is not limiting. They specialise in mother of the bride dresses, but they do have something available for any special occasion you might come across. We do need more size inclusive businesses like that, that are not petite, not plus size, not tall but just well stocked and flexible!

 

 

#WhatILoveAboutYou – Plus Size Blogger Event

A while back they invited some of us ladies for an afternoon to their Hazel grove shop and they made all of us literally feel like princesses. The dresses were stunning. It was amazing to be able to take dresses as special as these of the rail and to be able to just try them on.

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One might expect they have the dresses in a few standard sizes and if you are above that you have to order them in, but this is not the case. While each of us came in a different size representing pretty much the whole size spectrum each and any of us were able to pick some lovely dress of the rail and try it on.

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The day was absolutely amazing, not only were the dresses stunning Florentyna Dawn had even invited an amazingly talented MUA Sarah Maredith who did our hair and makeup and she really did an amazing job!

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Before & After MUA

We all literally did feel and look like princesses.

Have a look, don’t we look stunning?!

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Jaqui, Helena, Charlie, Michelle, Me, Tanya

Florentyna Dawn Collage 1

Florentyna Dawn Collage2

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Florentyna Dawn Collage 4

A Big, Big Thank You!

We really have to give a massive thank you to the amazing ladies of Florentyna Dawn for making this awesome day possible and for making each of us feel so special and simply put, like princesses.

Florentyna Dawn Staff

The lovely staff of Florentyna Dawn & the owner Dawn Priestnall (3rd from left)

Florentyna Dawn Sponsoring Ms British Beauty Curve

I am more than proud to announce that Florentyna Dawn is supporting me as Ms. Manchester Curve 2016 and will be one of my sponsor the in Miss British Beauty Curve Pageant.

Have A Browse

If you have an event coming up I can only recommend giving them a look either online at www.florentyna-dawn.co.uk or maybe even in their brick in mortar shop in Stockport near Manchester.

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What Do You Think?

Like always I would love to hear from you, about your experience and what you think. This time I really can’t decide on one question, so here are a few things I would love to hear from you about:

  • Which of the above is your favourite dress?
  • What is your experience with evening wear?
  • Where do you buy your occassion wear?
  • What was your last special occasion and what did you wear? I would love to see your pictures!

Lots of love

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#HealthyCurves – New Blog Section

 

Up till now my blog has centered mainly around fashion, body positivity and self love with the occasional beauty post sprinkled in, going forward I am going to add a new section to the blog: #HealthyCurves.

Lisa - Workout Wear

Invisible

From the runway to the Sports Illustrated Swimwear Issue, we plus size ladies have by now conquered so many domains.  The gym-scene however is still one of the main areas where we lack visibility.

The result of this is unfortunately quite often that plus-size individuals  are afraid of going to gym, scared of standing out, being stared at or maybe even being ridiculed. I myself have suffered from that in the past and still find myself once in a while looking around when I am at the gym.

 

Time For Us To Conquer The Gym

It is time for fat women exercising to be more visible making the sight of us in the gym a lot more normal – we need to conquer the gym and flaunt our curves  proudly, showing off that we are fat and fit or at least fat and working on it.

 

Body Positivity – Loving Yourself To Make Healthier Choices

But this is about more than being confident enough to wear a gym outfit and to conquer your fear of being stared at. This is about loving yourself enough, to make healthy choices for yourself.

The issue is that most of us, if and when we were going to the gym, focus most  of the time so much on weight that we end up failing so often, ending up in a never ending spiral, hating ourselves.Rather than focussing on weight, like I too used to do for so long,  we should be focussing on making healthy choices every day, being the healthiest self we can be that day, just a day at a time. If it means that we are losing weight or not.

If we are stubbornly chasing a weight that is difficult for us to reach, it will most likely lead to us being a lot less healthy, either by us following unhealthy fad diets which do not only lead to bad nutrition but in most cases also to yo-yoing, in the worst case it might lead to eating disorders or other mental illnesses and finally in most cases it will lead to simple plain unhappiness which is practically guaranteed by chasing an in many cases unattainable number, or at least unattainable in the short time we give us.

Torturing ourselves like that is often even unnecessary. While I am pretty sure no one will argue that weight does not have an influence on health. The idea of how thin we actually have to be to be healthier is also over-estimated. Not everybody is made to reach a size 8. To be healthy it is important to listen to our own bodies, however, to do this it is important that we are honest with ourselves.

 

My Story & Relationship With My Own Body And Fitness

I myself had to make theses experiences myself in a quite painful way. I have yo-yoed around most of my life going from crash diet to crash diet most of the time following a self-hating low till a few years back I decided that it was finally time to follow through and make the big chang, become a new person.

I was convinced this time I would make it and this time, I would make it to make the long-term change, a lifestyle change not a diet.  I  put all my effort in it for a very long time and over the time of more than 1.5 years I lost 30 kilos (ca 5 stone) slimmed down to a size 18 and even ran a half marathon.  I was so proud of myself.

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Then I hit the wall, the weight did not want to budge further, but my BMI still called me obese, I still bought my clothes in plus size shops and society still called me fat?! What to do? I kept and kept trying, counted my calories, exercised obsessively, struck more and more foods out of my diet but still the weight did not budge. There it was again, that anger with myself…

At that time I did not have the confidence I have now, I still thought I was fat and ugly. I completely missed how great my body felt, that all tests said I was fit and healthy that I without issue was able to run 10kilometers. I look amazing now and looking back I now know I looked amazing then, but all I could see was that my clothes still said plus-size, that despite all blood and heart tests saying healthy the BMI chart still said obese. The official classification and the german society still called me fat. And so at some point, I gave up hope and the inevitable  happened and I ended up unhappy and annoyed with myself and ended up gaining everything backover time.

Self-hate is not a good motivator. I am very very happy that after coming to the uk I stumbled across the body positivity movement who taught me that my self-worth is not tied  to my weight. It took me a long time but now I love myself and my body and know that I am fucking beautiful.
Unfortunately however after I always used to be fairly fit more weight I have recently noticed that I am by far too quick out of breath and I have also picked up some lower back pain and the occassional early pain in my right knee – the typical weight issues. There is no way round it if I want to tackle that pain and make sure that knee stays healthy I need to tackle that gym and work on my health and this is a journey I would like to share with you and also want to use as an opportunity to as a fat woman be as visible as possible going to the gym and also beating my own residual phobias.

 

Love Yourself & Be Our Healthiest Self Every Single Day

The best we can do for ourselves is love ourselves and realise that we are beautiful and worthy as we are and do every day the best for ourselves and our body. Ultimately this will lead to our healthiesst self – should this in each individuals case mean losing weight or not.

This is ultimately what I am going to be working on and will  try to  convey via my new #HealthyCurves posts. I am by no means planning in turning this into a dietblog in any way shape or form, but from now on you can  look forward to hopefully being able to me on my way back to an even happier, healthier self.

 

Look Forward To #HealthyCurves

Over the next sees you will see the occassional post seing me  trying out an online training system, working with a personal trainer, testing out yoga, trying to make more health conscious food choices and, as this ultimately is and stays a fashion blog,  lots of plus-size gym wear and plus-size bikinis.

Girl Geek In A Dress & Bear SCP - Plus Size Fitness

If You Live in Manchester & Surrounding you should definitely check out Bear SCP – Darren is by far one of the most body positive personal trainers I have met in a long time!

 

What Is Your Philosophy On Fitness?

Where do you stand when it comes to fitness? Are you a fitness fan or do you go nowhere near a gym? What is your favourite sport or fitness routine? What is the one fitness/self worth tip you would like to give to your younger self? I would love to hear from you?

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Indoor Canoeing With The Water Adventure Centre

Canoeing On International Women’s Day

A few weeks back I got the chance to try out canoeing with the amazing Manchester Water Adventure Centre. The Charity had taken over a pool in the basement of the Manchester Aquatics Center to use the opportunity of International Women’s Day to introduce women to their work and the sport of canoeing.

Water Adventure Center & Ms Manchester Curve

The Water Adventure Centre & What They Do

I am proud to announce that I am going to be supporting the Water Adventure Centre in my function as Ms. Manchester Curve 2016.

Water Adventure Center Logo

They are a long running local Manchester Charity who is very passionate about supporting young people and are very aware of the challenges that particularly young girls face and are doing their best to help top equip them for these challenges.

In their weekly Young Women’s Night, they are welcoming young women for canoeing, games, discussions, food & workshops addressing important topics like body positivity & beauty, self-love & self-esteem as well as topics like love, drugs & bullying &  many other challenges they face in their everyday lives.

Their strong passion for helping girls does not mean that there is nothing for boys. Every  Thursday they hold a Youth club which provides a variety activities (including canoeing). There is also a coffee bar area where young people can relax with friends and chat to Youth Workers.” And every Sunday the welcome boys and girls of the ages 8 to 14 for canoeing, water play and adventure, music and art projects.

My Taster Canoe Session

For our taster session in the Aquatics Center we were first kitted out with a life-vest and given a short crash course in paddling and how to hold our balance and then it was already time to hit the water.

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It was great fun, once the immediate fear of toppling over was under control and it does take only a few minutes till you gain basic control and get fairly stable. The last time I went paddling was about 15 years ago with school when I was about 15, so I am far from being an expert here. Only five minutes in I was doing rounds around the pool as if it was second nature and it was real fun.

It obviously is a great workout for the arms due to the paddling but this is not the only benefit. It is also, without you explicitly noticing, a great core workout as you constantly engage your core to maintain the balance. So this sport is a great alternative to the rather boring and generally loathed sit-ups.

Canoeing

Canoeing – Worth Giving It A Try

I can only recommend giving canoeing a try. Just have a google I am sure you will find a club that will offer canoeing in your region. And you do not need to worry not to fit into the canoe or life vest. I am a size 26 and the vest did fit with a lot of space and the canoe was very roomy, but in case you are still worried just give the group in your region a call. They will understand and look forward to meeting you and be more than happy to help you out.

Check Out The Water Adventure Centre

Should you live in the Manchester region and be yourself in the age relevant to the Water Adventure Centre groups or have family in the relevant age you should definitely give them a try or suggest it to your kids / nieces / sisters / grandkids / cousins. Have a look at their website here

Do you any great local body positive charities? Have you ever tried canoeing? What is your favorite watersport?

Lots of loveSignoff

 

What You Should Not Wear… – Fashion Rules

Are you as tired as me of stupid rules about what we are allowed to wear or not? We all have come across rules or even lists of what we apparently should and should not wear. These rules can present themselves in so many different ways:

  1. “Passed Down Wisdom”: that has been passed down from woman to woman like I have been told so many times, that I should not wear stripes or patterns or that I should avoid short skirts, bodycon dresses or generally tight tops.
  2. School’s Dres Codes: Weird rules imposed by schools about what girls (and also boys) are allowed to wear, most of the time claiming the girls would be too much of a distraction to the boys in their leggings or skirts revealing irresistible kneecaps. This goes to so crazy lengths that girls have been sent home from school for wearing leggings. (1, 2, 3)
  3. Social media comments: Maybe you came across the beautiful picture of “What Laura Loves”  in a stunning jumpsuit on the Simply Be Facebook Page which was taken apart by mean commenters claiming she should not wear a jumpsuit as it was unflattering
  4. The Press: one of the most recent examples was the Oprah magazine stating that you should only wear a crop top if(AND ONLY IF as they repeat) you have a flat stomach… I already had my rant about this specific article here

Oprah, Crfop Tops Only For Flat Stomach

Simply be has recently put together an eye-opening list of all the confusing rules they came across…

Completely Arbitrary Or Even Plain False

These rules are completely arbitrary and even the assumptions they are based on are sometimes even plain false.  The myth for example that horizontal stripes make you bigger has been debunked in multiple studies. A 2008 study even found that horizontal stripes make you appear 6% thinner than in vertical stripes. Who decided what is flattering?

What Is So Wrong With Clothes That Don’t Slim Us Down?

Even if horizontal stripes would make you look fatter, what is so inherently wrong with that? Why are we so obsessed with “flattering”? Are we plus-size ladies and body-positivity lovers still so deeply convinced that  being big is such an awful thing that it needs to be concealed, hidden?

If we want to move plus size fashion to the next level we have to learn to step away from our obsession with “flattering” and “slimming”. I personally believe that one thing we have to learn is, that flattering is not a synonym to slimming.

Dress Codes – Often Demeaning For Both Genders

It is obvious that for school or the workplace we should all follow some common sense dress codes. Ultimately you just should not wear you clubbing clothes to your school or workplace.

However, a dress code that go so far as to ban leggings, the visibility of bra straps (tank tops/strappy tops) or similar are demeaning for both genders. These rules assume that boys would be unable of controlling themselves in the view of some ankles or a bra strap shame the girls for completely innocent clothes choices

What Can We Do?

When thinking about what we can do about those stupid rules and misconceptions there is one simple answer.  Break the rules, break them at every occasion you get, and be visible doing it. That way we can break down the expectations of us trying to stay invisible and to hide our rolls and extra pounds at all costs. Show your glorious body in whatever you like to wear!

Simply Be Project – Break The Rules

So when Simply Be shared with me their asked me if I wanted to participate in their recent project aiming to break those rules down following  their recent blog post about those rules, I was immediately in. They were so nice to supply me with some pieces from their line to go and break some rules. A project right after my liking.

Breaking the rules!

So here is a selection of outfits breaking all the rules I could think of featuring past outfits and the lovely dresses that i was supplied by Simply Be

Fat Girls Should Not Wear Maxi Dresses

maxiLace Trim Jersey Maxi Dress – Simply Be*

barefoot collage with shadowFatPhRocks  – Dress Eddie Dress In Purple*
Belt: 
Accessorize – Old Season
Original Post

 

Fat Girls Should Not Wear Short Dresses!

Asos Curve Black Peplum Dress

Club L Plus Size Lace Panel Peplum Dress – Asos Curve
Shoes – Deichmann
Original Post

Lisa in missguidedDress – Missguided
Original Post

Fat Girls Should Not Wear Tight Clothing

Boohoo Nadia Zip Front Dress & Embossed HoodieNadia Blue Front Zip Dress – Boohoo*
Plus Nadia Embossed Sleeeve Hoodie – Boohoo
Mid Heel Pumps Electric Blue – Ebay
Original Post

Fat Girls Should Not Wear Bikinis/Expose Their Stomachs

6zmbUZ5 (1)Elomi Swim Bra – Simply Be
Mary Of Sweden High Waisted Bikini Brief – JD Williams

Magisculpt Tropical Print Plus Size BikiniMagisculpt Tropical Bikini – Simply Be

Fat Girls Should Not Wear Busy Patterns

Anna Scholz - Print Peplum Dress2

Anna Scholz Print Peplum Dress – Simply Be
Gold Pumps – Deichmann
Original Post


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338Dress – Simply Be*
Leggings – Simply Be

Fat Girls Should Not Wear Skinny Jeans


DSC04240-2Extreme Dip Back TopBoohoo
Body – Boohoo
Skinny Jeans –  very old season George at Asda
Stiletto Plateau Heels – Deichmann
Grey Clubmaster Glasses* – Specspost
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CpLV3jRKimono: Fringed Multi Tropical Print Sheer Kimono – Yours Clothing
Top: Black Ribbed Cotton VestYours Clothing
Denim Leggings: Simply Be sale item
Shoes: Deichmann sale item
 Original Post

 

 

Fat Girls Should Not Wear Jumpsuits

DSC00711-MOTIONJumpsuit With Cold Shoulder – Asos Curve
Original Post

AaEU5jGlJumpsuit: New Look Inspire – Asos £16 (was £22.99)
Shoes: Missguided £24.99
Belt: Accessorize (Old Season)
Original Post

 

 

 Fat Girls Should Not Expose Their Upper Arms

B1peGasVintage Dress – Lady Vintage
Original Post



MEpcWD3

Vintage Dress – Lady Vintage
Original Post

Fat Girls Should Not Wear Crop Tops

stairs-plus-size-crop-top-asos-missguided2Scuba Crop Top Asos Curve
Skater Skirt –
Missguided (similar)
High Heels –
Missguided
Watch
Moto 360 – Motorola (Amazon)
GlassesSpecspost
Original Post

 

 

Final Words

What Do You Think?

Which “rule” is your personal pet hate? Do you have a favourite rule-breaking outfit? I would love to see it! Why do you think we are so obsessed with “flattering”? I would love to hear from you!

 

Lots of love

Signoff

 

I am Ms Manchester Curve 2016

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Ms British Beauty Curve

I am happy to announce that I have been named Ms Manchester Curve 2016 and that through that I will be representing Manchester this year in the annual Miss British Beauty Curve body positivity pageant.

 

I am proud to be representing Manchester and very flattered by the honour to have been selected for this title and I would like to thank my sponsors Nothing But Epic and Florentyna Dawn for believing in me and sponsoring me.

Trying On The Ms British Beauty Curve Crown For Size :)

Trying On The Ms British Beauty Curve Crown For Size :)

A Big Step For Me

As a woman who has struggled so many years with my own appearance this is a very important step for me and I am more than happy to be representing self love and the fact that beauty has no size.

In my life I have gone through dozens of diets always thinking that happiness might be around that corner only as soon as the scale would show that magical number that would put my BMI in the normal range.

Even when I  had lost more than 30 kilos (close to 5 stone, for my British friends), was fit enough to run a half-marathon and had more than healthy test results at the doctor,I still hated myself. Why? That is something I will describe in a little more detail in a future post.

Lisa Runs Halfmarathon In 2009

Don’t Put Your Life On Hold

The bottom line is that it took me a long time to understand that whatever the label in my clothes says and whatever my scales says is irrelevant. The idea that everything will suddenly be great once you reach a magic number in your clothes or your scale is wrong. By following this idea you will put your live on hold forever.

Be The Best Version Of Yourself

What matters personally for me, is striving every day to be the best version of myself, that I can be today; may that be in be in health, professionally or following my hobbies. And I am definately looking fabulous doing that!

Reaching More Women With This Message

I am very happy that the Miss British Beauty Curve will give me a platform to communicate this message to other women who might still be in the position of putting themselves down and waiting for their lives to start, that I was in before I realised I was worthy of self-love and to live my life.

And so are you beautiful girl! Go out there and have a killer day!

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