#MAAfterDark – It’s All About The Party Dress

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 #MAAfterDark – The Event All About The Party Dress

If you follow my blog you will have seen several excited posts leading up to #MAAfterDark. The Hashtag stands for Manchester Arndale After Dark and was an event organised by the Manchester Arndale center all about the perfect party dress and looking glam during this party season.

This evening brought 18 amazing Mancunian blogger babes together as well as special guest and competition judge Victoria from Inthefrow, who you can see in the bottom left in the below image collection.

An Inclusive Event

As I had mentioned in my very first post leading up to this event that I absolutely loved, that is was one of my very first inclusive events. This means here no distinction was made between “normal” fashion blogger and plus-size bloggers. It is nice to be surrounded by lot’s of amazing plus-size ladies and to feel all the support but it is also amazing  to once in a while to be recognised as simply being part of the “fashion scene” and not only plus size.

This inclusive nature of the event was not only reflected through the bloggers that were invited, but also by the represented shops, showing off their current party fashion, with Simply Be, Yours Clothing & Evans having rail space – and I fell in love a few times that evening.

 The Task

Each of us bloggers had been paired beforehand with one of the many retailers in the Arndale Center and given the same task: find your perfect party dress. Finally the best 10 party dresses would be chosesn by a jury. I was paired with the lovely Yours Clothing.

 

My Retailer

 

But let’s get to the important part: finding my dress. I was very excited to be paired up with yours clothing, as it is a brand I very much support. Not only do they offer clothes in a large sizing range (up to a 32) but they are also quite affordable compared to others while still on trend.

So last I week,  I set foot in to their yours clothing branch for an epic shopping sessionarmed with a shopping voucher given to me by the Manchester Arndale center. You can read more about this in one of my latest posts here. The last contenders were these three dresses:

Choosing The Dress

Before I went I had a look online and was dead set for the lace skater dress, especially as skater dresses are usually my go to party dress. However, if there is one thing I have learned over the last few months blogging, then it is always to try new things. And ultimately I liked the dress, but I felt I looked a bit unbalanced and bottom heavy in it, with relatively little fabric on the top and the poufy skirt on the bottom.

 

So I tried the sleeveless 20s style flapper dress in the middle. The 20s are currently very much on trend and this dress had been recommended to me by the Yours girls at the Plus size awards. I loved it on the hanger and although I liked particularly the fringes and had lot’s of fun shimmying for the camera I believed it did not really do my shape justice.

 

Finally I tried the lace shift dress in combination with a sparkly silver belt, the silver version of the golden belt that I had worn for the Plus Size Awards. To my surprise that combination really convinced me. The short sleeves seemed to really balance my uppper body and the belt nicely took my waist in to create a lovely hourglass shape. The length is perfect for the office when combined with leggins and shows just about the right amount of leg in it’s night look when combined with

The Accessories

With a lovely simple dress like this you can go all out and sparkly on the accessories. And this is what I did. I went for a sparkly silver belt, in combination with a black clutch with silver studs. Luckily I even had a pair of Deichman plateau heels that almost perfectly matched the studs in the bag.

The best thing about this was though that my £100 did not only pay for the dress, but also for all the accessorie: the handbag, the belt, the earrings and the bracelet and that with money to spare. I would say that was a pretty good deal. Interestingly enough, looking at the hangers when coming in, I appeared to be the only one who accessorized the dress out using our budget.

The Styling

After  having a first look at the new party wear collections, a nice prosecco and some nibbles. It was time for beautifying. I got the perfect classy and simple yet effective makeup to match my dress together with the most amazing curl and updo I have had in a long time I really loved what the stylists did.

My Final Look

Black Lace Swing Dress With Contrast Insert* –  (£34) – Yours Clothing
Black & Silver Diamante Across The Body Bag* –  (£20) -(Yours Clothing*
Grey Glitter Thin Belt*-  (£7) Yours Clothing
Bracelet* –  (not on site) – Yours Clothing
Earrings* – (not on site) – Yours Clothing
Shoes – (old season) – Deichman

I am really, really happy with my final look. Individually all things were great, the hair is absolutely amazing but together they are just a killer style. I so love what the stylist has done with my hair, the makeup was subtle but effective and matched the style of dress very well, I just know if I would have done it myself I would have overdone the smokey eye once again.  And finally the sparkly accessories give this simple look the perfect dose of glamour.

#MAAfterDark – The Competition

The jury had a very close look and intensive discussion about the dresses you can see in the group shot. Finally the 10 dresses below were crowned the top 10 party dresses of this season.

 

These dresses will be displayed in the Arndale Center and here on their website. You can win a voucher for £100 yourself by voting for which one is your personal favourite. Vote here. You can have a closer look at these dresses here, and also enter the competition.

 

Which Dress Would You Have Chosen

Which of the 18 dresses is your favourite? You can have a closer look at them by clicking on the image to enlarge it. Which one is your favourite? Do you agree with the Jury or would you have chosen differently? And which one is your absolute favourite?

Lot’s of love.

 

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