The Holidays Are Over – Back To Work

Lisa & Jen christmas

A Little Break – From Everything

Hi Everyone, the Holidays are over and I din’t only take some time off work but also off blogging.

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Even though I would have loved to do lots of blogging, to be honest I I very much needed the break and had not much of a choice as a mixture of a bad back, tooth problems and exhaustion practically forced me into the horizontal position.

This year was a good year but particularly the last few months have been particularly hard on me and have taken their toll. Next to the stress and the health issues I have been pratically exhausted and almost literally fell into bed for four days with only a short interruption for festive activities.

Festive Activities

As you might have heard I unfortunately wasn’t able to get home to my family in Germany for Christmas – which added to whole of “me not feeling great” mix.

At least I had a great “surrogate Family” for my Christmas as I was invited by Irene, a uni friend, and her lovely family to be part of their festivities. So in the end I had an absolutely amazing, typically British, Christmas with the most amazing Christmas dinner with the most dazzling table decoration I have seen so far.

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Please excuse the whimsical frame etcetera, but you should never leave me alone with certain picture manipulation programs that have silly holiday functions

A Quick Look At The Festive Fashion

I chose to wear my Club L Sequins Dress in black from Asos which I got a while back as one option for our office Christmas party. I love the dress but it is really a bit short for ever wearing it without leggings… I really love the style of Club L and Asos has currently quite a few Club L bargains in their winter sale. Including some items that are part of my wardrobe.

Coming back toe the dress though, the meantime I have also bought the dress in silver, just because I love the dress so much.Soon I will give a look at this one too as I plan an outfit post on the two dresses within the next days.

Sequins proved to be a good choice as it turns out that Jen, Irene’s daughter, also had chosen to wear a lovely sequins dress and luckily she agreed to take a picture with me for my blog.

Lisa & Jen

I love the skater dress she is wearing. If anyone of you has seen anywhere a similar dress in plus size let me know. I would love to have sequins skater dress.

Oh A Fez!

On the way out I discovered a Fez on in their hallway. There is no way I would have left the house without a picture…. Why? As I am (thanks to my lovely friend Jess, as she pointed out 😀 ) am a close to obsessed Doctor Who fan… and you can not come across a fez and not take a picture as a whovian…

So here it is:

Lisa & Jen fez

 

Merry Christmas & A Happy New Year

How was your Christmas? Did you celebrate with your loved ones or did you have an alternative Christmas like me?

I hope you had great Holidays and if you are back in work like me this week I wish you a great start back into worklife and otherwise I wish you an amazing time off – either way, enjoy the last few days of 2014 and have a great start into 2015.

Lot’s of love

Signoff

 As a little bonus:

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Merry Christmas With Ann Harvey

Merry Christmas

Hello Everyone I would like to wish you all a very happy Christmas with one of my recent favourite festive outfits.

It has recently been a bit quiet around here as I have been a bit ill the past few weeks and uber busy at work, but I very much hope this is going to get much better very soon…

Dress – Ann Harvey Baroque Print Dress* (Was £45, Now £22.50)
Leggings – Simply Be
Shoes – Deichman Winter Sale
Shawl – Generic Ebay

How I Will Be Celebrating

Theoretically for me as a German, yesterday the 24th would have been the most important day of Christmas. However, when in rome… So today I will meet up with a good Uni friend and will have Christmas with her and her family as I unfortunatelly could not make it home for the holidays this year.

The Ann Harvey Baroque Print Dress*

I am very much in love with this festive Ann Harvey Baroque Print Dress*. Initially I was a bit afraid that the red colour would not work with my currently pink hair. When trying the dress on I was doubly happy that it did as I absolutely adored the shape even more than I did judging by the pictures of the dress online.

Ann Harvey Baroque Dress Website and On Lisa

 

Although it is not specificly a vintage or a 50s style dress I could not help but be reminded of a mad men style frock. I am not sure if it is my figure or the cut that is doing it, but I am loving it.

Another plus point for the dress is the cleavage. Showing some of your assets off without being too revealing, which is always a winner and for a lady with a g-cup bust often quite hard to find. This dress, with the wrap detailing appears to accommodate a larger or a smaller bust alike. Well done Ann Harvey!

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Ann Harvey was one of these shops that just had not been on my radar yet, but I am glad they approached me for this review. Ann Harvey might not become my default go to shop but when looking for classic and above all classy fashion, they are definately the right place

Ann Harvey’s Winter Sale

They currently have a winter sale on, with up to 50% reduction. The dress reviewed in this post is actually one of the reduced pieces. So it might be worth having a nosey around over the holidays. On top of this, if you are a new customer you can make use of a 10% reduction using the code HELLOTEN.

The German Christmas Markets

I last wore the dress to the German Christmas Markets here in Manchester. Every year I am looking forward to it as it is a little piece of home for me. A year without a bag of sugar and cinnamon candied almonds (Gebrannte Mandeln), a Bratwurst and an overpriced mulled wine just is not complete.

christmas markets

The day was surprisingly warm for this time of year and so I actually ended up wearing just the dress with a shawl and some lovely ankle boots from the Deichman Winter sale, my newest addition to the shoe collection. My shoe collection is slowly getting out of hand… but I will address this in a later post…

Do you have any Christmas traditions you can’t live without?

Merry Christmas Everyone

Signoff

Lusting Over Jumper Dresses – What I would have bought

Jumper Dresses: A Godsend For The Colder Season

The winter has come and is in full swing. Temperatures have fallen into the single digit range. Time to dress a bit more cosily. While many people change over to trousers I love to wear dresses all year round.

Like a godsend there is a great trend out there right now: Jumper Dresses. Imagine your favourite winter jumper & now turn it into a stylish dress. An absolute win-win, right?

 

Once Again Forgotten About Plus-Size

Well it really could be, if only the fashion industry would not have completely forgotten about us plus-size girls, once again. I particularly love the dresses available at Esprit, who in my eyes have mastered the jumper dress this season and there are also a ton of amazing styles available at Asos. However, neither of them offers jumper dresses larger than a size 18…

 

Esprit: Simple Timeless Chic (But Not For Fat Chicks)

I have always loved the classic but simple Esprit chic and very much regretted they never offered any sizes I could fit in. I recently had lost my much loved esprit watch and considered treating myself for Christmas to a new one. And this is where I  came across the jumper dress and ultimately ended up torturing myself: “And this is what you could have worn if you were a size which we, the retailer, arbitrarily deem “normal””

 

Has This Trend Made It To The Plus-Size Space Yet?

The plus-size industry has become much better in reacting to current trends, but unfortunately this is not true for all trends. Additionally there is still quite a bit of a delay till most trends hit the plus-size community

In this case, like usually I checked the usual suspects if I could find this trend beyond a size 18 somewhere online.Asos, Yours Clothing & Simply Be are generally the first ones in my experience to deliver a trend to the plus size community.

However the jumper dress seems to have been overlooked by all three of them. Particularly disappointing is that Asos has a sizeable range of jumper dresses but appears to have completely forgotten to include their curve range (except for this ONE in my eyes somewhat questionable number).

 

This Is What I Would Have Bought:

 

ASOS Cable Knit Dress With Off Shoulder

I am absolutely in love with the combination between the cosy looking jumper style with it lovely cable knit pattern and the bardot neckline. A great compromise between style and warmth. I guess on the colder days it would even look amazing when combining it with a layer underneath to cover the shoulders.

I do believe it would be a true stunner on a plus-size girl, particularly when combined with a belt, some opaque tights or leggings and a lovely pair of ankle boots.

ASOS Cable Knit Dress With Off Shoulder – £45.00
Available up to Size 18

Asos Midi Dress In Rib Knit

This jumper dress is channelling the 90s, the “good part” of the 90s… Yes please.

Image 1 of ASOS Midi Dress In Rib Knit
ASOS Midi Dress In Rib Knit  – £35
Available up to Size 18

Esprit Lambs Wool Knitted Dress

This is a lovely simple dress for every day and is absolutely amazing in showing off the female silhouette, sporting an almost skater dress like shape when combined with a belt. If it has that lovely shape on a skinny woman try to imagine it on a more curvy woman (boom!). This really is an awesome every day look for a cold winter day.

lambs wool knitted dress

 Lambs Wool Knitted Dress – £ 45.00
Available up to Size 18

 

Esprit Knit Dress Containing Cashmere

This knit dress is absolutely stunning and was the first one that grabbed my attention. I love the simple sophisticated chic. The embellishment in combination with the simple design is just stunning and I would very much love as much to wear it to the office as I would for a night out.

embelished cashmere knit dress Esprit

 Esprit Knit Dress Containing Cashmere – £75
Available up to Size 18

 

Blended Wool Fine-Knit Dress

This dress, sporting a jacquard pattern and a low drawstring waist, is an absolutely lovely casual dress, perfect for a pre-christmas family get together, the day on the christmas market or maybe just coffee with friends. Once again this dress would be lovely with a opaque pair of tights and some lovely boots, maybe even some grey uggs if I could afford them. However, once again WOULD that is, if you made it in my size… Unfortunately this dress is even only available up to size 16, compared to 18 in the other Esprit dresses…

blended wool fine-knit dress

blended wool fine-knit dress – £ 45.00
Available up to Size 16

 

Dear fashion industry:

Can you please give me these dresses in a size 24 for Christmas? That would be amazing. Oh and while you are at it, make it a 32. You’d be surprised how much business there is in these sizes.

There are many stunning & fashionable girls being larger than a size 20 or even 30 looking for equally stunning clothes and there are very few retailers catering for us. The desire to dress in fashionable clothes does not end at a certain size, and this is a lesson all fashion retailers should learn, fast!

Lots of Love

Signoff

PS:

More About The Topic

There is big demand for more trends being available in larger sizes. And there is a giant gap in the market particularly when going beyond a size 26.

In case you are interested in what us plus-size ladies would love to be able to buy or if you are a retailer interested in finding out where you might be losing money I do have a reading tip for you:

Blogger Challenge: #HeresWhatIWouldHaveSpent

Debz from “The Not So Secret Diaries of A Wannabe Princess” recently started a blogging challenge called “Here Is What I Would Have Spent” looking each time at a different retailer with a lot of amazing bloggers taking part. Below I have added a list of them. Check them out, they are definitely worth a read:

Skinny Models For Plus-Size – Why?

I have voiced in the past numerous times that I have absolutely no idea why the Plus-Size Industry keeps using models hardly ever larger than a size 12 and if we are lucky maybe a 14 and today this been highlighted once again.

Rebel Wilson In A Stunning Sequins Dress

Asos Curve shared yesterday on their Facebook page this lovely picture of Rebel Wilson in an absolutely stunning sequins dress out of their collection that she wore yesterday for a film premiere.

How Could I Overlook this?

I absolutely love this dress and was wondering how I could have overlooked this stunner when I was on the look out for a sequins dress for the Christmas season. However, clicking through to the website I realise why.

But see yourself:

 

sequin

 

ASOS CURVE Exclusive V-Neck Dress With Sequin Skirt – £35

Nothing against the model, she is a very beautiful girl and even the poses are not even the problem. The issue here is, her figure might be very beautiful but it is just not suitable to give me or any other woman on the other side of a size 20 an idea of how this dress might look on us.

I Would Have Bought It In A Heartbeat

PicMonkey Collage

I absolutely love how the piece looks on Rebel it really hugs her “lady lumps” in all the right places. Based on her picture, I would buy it in a heartbeat.

Although now I can’t justify it any more, as I have already bought 3 sequins dresses in the meantime, and there are only so many Christmas and New Years Eve parties you can go to…

Why doesn’t the Plus-Size Industry Fix This?

Weirdly enough the plus size industry does not appear to try to fix this by using larger models but rather by padding the skinny models with fat suits, erm what?

 Two Models A Possible Solution?

What I would love to see in the plus size industry is what the lovely little independent label Silly Old Sea Dog is doing for some of it’s products, it is very simple and will not cost too much more: Simply using two models.

PicMonkey Collage3
Image source

Silly Old Sea Dog Cartoon Dress 50s Style – £95 (Handmade)

If retailers are affraid we might not click on the item if we don’t see on a skinny woman then this might be the solution. And it gives the retailers a soft way to test the use of larger models without increasing risk or costs by too much.

Thinking about how much overhead goes into a piece of clothing simply a second model for the plus-size items, giving us ladies on both sides of the spectrum a better idea how it might look on us, is not going to add that much of a cost to it. I am sure it would be at least something that would be worth trialing for the big retailers. Why it has not been done yet I really don’t know

Lot’s of love

Signoff

 

 

Breaking News: Victory Over The Victory Rolls

My First Victory Rolls

I am a huge fan of vintage fashion and hair, particularly of the pin-up and 50s flavour of vintage. I have seen so many amazing pictures and videos of vintage style bloggers showing off victory rolls off in all shapes and forms and unfortunately as often have I tried to recreate this kind of look  I failed miserably, up till now…

Conquered But Not Yet Mastered

This post unfortunately is neither a tutorial nor a detailed hair look post but it marks an important moment in my personal make-up and hair career. I conquered the victory roll.

This weekend, on the night of our office Christmas do I conquered the coveted vintage roll finally for the very first time!

You can bet that over the next weeks I will make a few more tries not to only conquer but master the victory roll (at least to a point where I succeed more often than I fail) and then I will look into sharing my new learned “wisdom”  in how to achieve victory rolls as a complete hair dummy in a tutorial post or maybe even a youtube video.

My Little Helpers

One thing that I can tell you though already though, is that my new roller set and my forming water that I brought back from Germany were an integral part of me achieving this hair style.

BaByliss 30 Piece Heated Ceramic Roller SetBaByliss 30 Piece Heated Ceramic Roller Set: Image 11

I have my new Babyliss set of heated rollers now for I only a few weeks now but it is already much loved. With it’s 30 rollers it finally is enough for my amount of hair and I like the final result due to the different roller sizes. I guess it gives it a more lively look due to the different curl sizes.

Balea Forming Water

I absolutely love the forming water from Balea. So far I have unfortunately not found anything comparable in the UK so I always bring it back from Germany when I am visiting. This forming water, when sprayed wet hair & blow dryed it gives great volume and when sprayed on before curling, they help to form the curl but also very much to make them last the whole night and longer

Now On To Conquer Heidi Rolls?

The next steps, next to mastering this hairstyle will by to try some different combinations ans placing of vicory rolls as well as seeing if I can maybe attempt a heidi roll. I would also love to achieve a Dita Van Teese Curl Set, but I will have to try one step after the other.

Do you have any tips for easy vintage hair, ready for a beginner or do you maybe yourself have a hairstyle you would love to master?

Lots of Love

Signoff

The British Plus Size Awards & The Stunning Missguided Velvet Wrap Dress

Awards Ceremony

As you might have heard I had been nominated for an award in this year’s British Plus Size Awards. So two weeks ago I stepped onto a glamorous Megabus to London and attended the somewhat more glamorous awards ceremony in the Raddison Blu.

I did not win an award but it was a true honour to have been nominated. I am not going to go into detail as to who as been nominated and who won each price as there are been a number of posts taking care of this and I will post a list of the winners below this post for your reference.

I decided to wear the more than  stunning Missguided velvet wrap dress in cobalt blue. I absolutely love this dress and together with the golden accessories, a Yours Clothing golden glitter belt, asos golden plateau heels and golden  necklace from Missguided, it was an absolute eye catcher. Unfortunately this dress has sold out since then.

The Nomination

I was nominated in the category “Best New Blogger”. While I was very, very proud to be nominated, I did not expect to win this prize, particularly as I was nominated in the same category as some amazing  plus-size blogger babes. It would have definitely been no shame to lose to any of them, ultimately it was an incredible and true honour to be nominated after less than one year of blogging.

The above red carpet picture shows me alongside Lucy from Fateauty X (second from left), Hollie from Pretty Big Butterflies (fourth from left) and Katie from Toodaloo Katie (fifth from left) who all have been nominated in the same catogory. The girl third from the right is Michaela from Cardiffornia Girl, also a blog very much worth checking out.

Ultimately it was Hollie from Pretty Big Butterflies who won the award in our category, very much deserved. Congratulations Hollie!

Amazing People At The Table

The best thing about the evening was though not the entertainment, which no question was great or the awards themselves, it was the great  and incredibly interesting people I ended up at the table with.

As I could not afford two tickets due to the very high price for the tickets (tickets for nominated bloggers should really be free…). I had to go on my own, so I was a bit worried about the evening and who I would end up with at the table, but I could not have been more lucky.I ended up with a bunch of the most interesting people possible.

The Girls From Yours Clothing

Some of the people were the three girls from Yours Clothing, an absolutely lovely and funny bunch who managed to win 3 of the 4 awards they were nominated for. It was absolutely lovely to have a chat with them and they gave me some great tips on what dresses to try when I was representing Yours Clothing at #MAAfterDark a party dress event in the Manchester Arndale Center.

Leah from LeahXL, Organiser of StyleXL, Founder of ModelXL

Another Amazing person I had the honour to meet at my table was Leah from LeahXL sat at my table together with her partner. She is an absolutely great person with an admirable drive and a great upbeat personality who is also the organiser of StyleXL an amazing plus size event  in the Midlands that is going to take place in July 2015 and also the founder of plus-size pageant and a plus-size modelling agency ModelXL.

Bethany Churcher – Singer, Artist, Author, Inspiration

Next to all those lovely girls the most exceptional girls on my table were Bethany Churcher and her mother Amanda. Not only is Bethany an amazing singer (check out her youtube channel) and was part of the entertainment this evening, she is also an absolutely beautiful girl, talented artist and book author. She is truly a truly inspirational girl, not only is she as talented as she is, this girl had to fight her way through life & she also founded a charity. Not too long ago she was only given a few more months to live, her weight was threatening her life & she suffered a mini stroke and further complications caused by her weight issues and a gastric bypass- read more about it here. Neither this, nor  several surgeries and following complications were stopping her to pursue her dream. You should definitely look out for her I am sure you will hear much more about her in future.

The Only Downside – Overpriced Tickets

All in all it was an amazing evening, the only real downside were the prices of the tickets. £130 is a lot of money and £80 for a reduced ticked for nominees is still a stiff price, particularly when it turns out that drinks aren’t even included and the cheapest bottle of wine is £23. I do understand that this evening was collection money for a charity and a lot of companies won’t think twice before spending the above money. However, for a blogger like me, even the reduced ticket at £80 is A LOT of money, particularly when this has to be combined with a hotel and train/bus tickets to London. All in all the evening has costs me £300 and I wasn’t even able to share this evening with my partner or any other loved one due the price and I would have very much loved to share this as being nominnated was something really special to me.

Thank you all

Since I have started blogging I have received one or the other amazing direct message of some lovely girls telling me that I have supported them in finding their own self confidence, and that is just absolutely amazing and just reminds me again and again why I put that much time and work in this. I’d like to thank everybody who either nominated me or voted for me. It is great to know that my ramblings are appreciated and as mentioned above it was a true honour to be nominated and I always love to hear feedbackAll your feedback and comments is very much appreciated. Your feedback is helping me to determine what you like and what you would like to see more of. Lot’s of love Signoff


 

Thanks to Nicky Rockets for taking the great red carpet pictures and the pictures of the ceremony and entertainment.

The Winners

Best celebrity Female – Lisa Riley
Best celebrity Male – James Corden
Best Entertainer – Sarah Millican
Best Model – Haley Hasselhoff
Best High street Retailer –  Yours Clothing
Best Online Retailer – Asos
Best Designer – Lovedrobe
Best Accessories Range – Chunky Cat Cuddler
Best Footwear Range – New Look
Best Lingerie Brand – Curvy Kate
Best Swimwear Range –  Yours Clothing
Best Magazine – Big Is Beautiful
Best Bridal Range – Curves and Couture
Best Supermarket Range –  George at Asda
Best Lingerie Blog – Curvy Kate
Best New Blogger – Hollie – Pretty Big Butterflies
Best Fashion Blog – Georgina – She Might Be Loved
Best Person In Business – Andrew Killingworth for Yours Clothing
Best Fashion Event – Plus North
Best Achievement – Sarah Hadzipasic