Recently Bustle shared a selection of 35 amazing plus-size women proving that the latest trends are not just for straight sizes but also can be rocked by larger women. I am more than flattered to say that I happend to be one of those women selected by Bustle. This is just a great compliment to be mentioned amongst so many amazing plus-size bloggers and body positivity influencers.
These 34 influencers (plus me) share their favourite trend of the season with you and why they love these trend. If you were wondering what exactly this season’s trends are, check out this gallery.
I always love hearing more about more why and how people choose the styles they do, especially when it is from influencers like those featured here.
Reasons to choose a style can be as banal as just the love of a colour or it can be something as dear to ourselves as challenging yourself to a style that scares you, challenging yourself and your own confidence.
My Autumn OOTD & Why I Love It
The autumn style that I went for, is the stunning dress out of the Holly Hagan range by Want That Trend that I recently bought at the Curve Fashion Festival. Next to the beautiful maxi style the dress is sparkling with beautiful sparkly metal detailing. And if you know me I love metallics, glitter & sparkles in any way, shape or form.
The reason why I love metallics and metallic detailing is that you can still make them work for most occasions while sequins can easily look over the top. With metallics being one of the main trends this autumn I will indulge this season in the metal detail trend as much as I can.
I hid myself for so long only wearing subdued colours and baggy clothes because of low self-esteem and thinking that is what I had to do being fat. This is why I now enjoy wearing some glitter even more. Ultimately I have a lot of catching up to do on bold colours, patterns & especially sparkles.
Autumn is in full swing and as it is getting colder and windier outside it is time to cosy and snuggle up either at home under a blanket with nice cup of tea or to have a stroll in a toasty and warm coat through the awesome autumn landscapes that millions of colourful leaves have turned the world into.
I love this feeling of snuggling in a warm coat or blanket while it is cold around you. This year seemed to be passing me by and although I recently found a lovely autumn coat, winter is just round the corner and I had absolutely now winter ready coat. I already expected I once again had to wear lots and lots of layers.
Affordable Winter Walks With bonprix
So I was even more excited when bonprix got in contact with me if I might be interested in taking part in their Affordable Winter Walks challenge.
If I am honest I have to admit, it was a while back since I had last checked out bonprix and so I was very positively surprised of their range. Since I last knew about them, their choice and range as a whole has significantly improved. I had quite a hard time to decide, there were so many lovely coats and vests to choose from.
Faux Suede Duffle Coat
After I debated for a while for and against a biker jacket (I had recently binge watched sons of anarchy…) I decided to go with the winter jacket that reason was voting for right from the beginning and chose this beautiful faux suede suede duffle coat which is bang on trend with this strong (faux) suede trend.
So ultimately there was not much of a compromise between reason and fashion to make and snuggly as it is, it is the absolutely perfect choice for a stroll in the autumn/winter sun enjoying the colourful landscape
The Fit – Length
Especially while being as a cyclist and being 5’9 both the length of the coat and the length of the arms are important for me.
It is not too long to be restrictive but long enough to cover your lower back which sometimes does get exposed by too short coats when wearing jeans, especially when on the bike.
The Fit – Size
I am usually somewhere between a size 24 and 26 and chose a 26 for this coat, keeping in mind that there might be a time when I might wear a jumper or multiple layers of clothing under it. It is a good job I went for the larger size as it does fit well but is a little bit snug when the zip is closed. So go for your usual size but if you are unsure between two sizes, go for the larger one.
The Fit – Arm Length
I so so often struggle with the arm length,with coats exposing the especially on the bike dreaded dreaded gap between gloves and sleeves, but this coat works perfectly being at this perfect compromise length working for the taller and the shorter girl.
The Cut – Seams
When ordering the coat I wasn’t too sure on the outside seams but now wearing it I do actually like it as it seems to stretch your length in the back and accentuate your waist thanks to strategical placing.
The Lining – Warm & Cuddly
The faux suede is super soft and the coat is lined with and even softer shearling style trim which will keep you warm and toasty even in the strongest winds.
This makes particularly the hood lovely and cuddly, although that might be a little bit roomy but no less comfy.
Right about the time I got the coat, Lindy Bop entered a sale with hundreds of dresses reduced up to 30% and some even more… (bye, bye bank balance) I simply could not resist… As you know I absolutely adore vintage and particularly ‘Tara’, this autumnal dress in plum, seemed just perfect for the season while complementing and connecting the colours in the coat with my blue/purple hair.
The ankle boots are from my absolute favourite shoe shop: Deichman. They are not only one of the few shoe shops in the UK that offer a reasonable ratio of flat to high heels with even some reasonable proportion of kitten heels they also offer fashionable shoes that last more than only a few wears at a reasonable price. Chances are you are going to use those lovelies next winter season for a walk again.
The boots are part of their XXL line, this means they run up to EU size 44 (UK 10) and are usually a little wider than their normal Graceland range shoes. They might not be fur lined, so they are not quite winter shoes yet, but with some cosy socks they will comfortably carry you through autumn.
I will ignore the cardigan for now, not only is it 5 seasons old and from a shop that is not available in the uk, but I am also sure that if you are the slightest like me, you will have a large collection of cardigans already waiting to be thrown into autumn ready combinations.
Adding It All Up – Affordable Winter Walks Indeed
With the overall topic being affordable winter walks, this outfit is definitely falling into the affordable Category.
Despite the title, no I have not gotten engaged. However, I recently got a little bit of a feel of how it is to wear a set of precious Diamonds at a lovely little jeweller at Victoria Highfields.
I Am A Little Scared Of Diamond Rings…
I am usually not the jeweller and diamond type of girl. To be honest, I rarely wear any jewellery above the price of £20, simply because I would be terrified of losing it. I still do have the appreciation for beautiful diamond jewellery. And this place has some lovely things to look at for anyone with an appreciation for diamonds
In fact we were able to try some absolutely stunning pieces on, pieces that are very unlikely to ever grace my finger in real life as I would be more than mortified of losing them. Each of them was at least worth the equivalent of a small to mid-range car on my finger, being German this is an accepted way of estimating value.
Unfortunately none of these beautiful pieces did fit on my rather large fingers. The good news is that they do these pieces on a bespoke pieces so even if you have somewhat fat fingers like mine, they will make for you, the exact ring you imagined for you.I was told if you want you can even bring the stones in yourself if you want to save some money or want to give a stone from a family heirloom a new life.
I Finally Found Out My Ring Size
I had a good chat with one of their staff and got some advice on what ring size to wear. Apparently I measure a Y, but this is not where the advice ended because there is more to it than just measuring. Which ring size you buy also depends a bit on the type of ring. For a thicker ring you will probably get away with a larger size than for a smaller ring. The rule of thumb is a ring should slide on, but always wiggle off.
If you also have no clue what your ring size is and always just buy whatever fits you in the cheap store you went to like I always did: here is link to the Victoria Highfield ring size tool that will help you to find out your size – all you need is a ring that fits you well and a printer. Although for ring fitting it will always be best to visit your local jeweller. I guess rings are also a little bit like bras, because one fits you does not mean that all in that size fit you. Ultimately it will be best to try them on.
Despite Expectation: I Did Not Feel Out Of Place
Jewellers really were and are not one of my usual habitats … But having had a closer look at one I have to say I have been positively surprised. It does not always have to be cheap fashion jewellery from fashion retailers. I had a good look at all the displays and there were some beautiful and actually affordable gems (see what I did there… erm sorry that was a bad one).
I guess spending a few pounds more, can get some lovely and a lot longer lasting jewellery than you can get from your usual retailer. I would encourage you to have a quick browse at your local jeweller, it is at least worth a look.
Giving My Beautiful Family Heirlooms A New Life
I think I might actually very soon be paying Victoria Highfield another visit fairly soon. I have now for quite a while some lovely rings lying around that I have inherited from my grandmother, that I have not done with much more than staring at, as they are far too small for me.
These rings aren’t worth much in money, however they are to me. They are basically all the physical memories I have left of my grandmother and it would be amazing to be able to wear them. I am sure Victoria Highfield will do a great job with these 3 lovely family heirlooms giving them another life, beiing worn by another generation.
She Practically Never Took The Gold One Off…
I am so so looking forward to wearing this pieces. Particularly the gold ring with the large stone is absolutely stunning to me. I have been told that was also the ring that she wore the most and practically never took of. I do like to think back to the memories I have with my grandmother, unfortunately they are few as she unfortunately died when I was 5. It will be great to be able to wear a piece of my family and it’s history.
Far To Valuable To Be Locked Away
I would encourage you to have a look to your drawers at home or ask your parents if there is any family jewellery that was just locked away in a box. Those pieces of memory are far to valuable to be locked away.
Ok girls it is time for another rant. I know I am ranting quite a lot here recently but there is just every other day some thoughtless body shaming or other stupidity going on. So recently I just really have to vent… a lot.
Its Instagram, Again
So what has happened this time? This time it’s Instagram, again. After banning the female nipple, pubic hair peeking our of a bathing suit, women on their period and not to forget being one of the breastfeeding nazis (read more here). Not to forget to time and again take down bra selfies of women above a size 10 while those of skinny women are fine. It is now shame to get shame people based on their bodies once again, as they have now put the word #curvy on their blacklist, which will not allow you to search for this hashtag anymore.
So when you as a larger lady post your next cute outfit on Instagram you might need to reconsider what hashtag you want to use if you would like to enable people to find you… Words you can choose now I guess are:
By the way #fatf*** also still works, in case you would like to use thatLovely isn’t it?
Why #Curvy Matters For Plus Positivity
But let’s be honest most terms have very negative connotations. The word curvy is a word that finally was a positive word, a word that enabled someone that will have struggled with a very negative body image for a long time finally to start looking at themselves in a more positive light
The debate of what to call your body type when you have a few more kilos on you has been going on for quite a while. And admittedly some #curvy women might be a little more round or boxy and some people really get weirdly angry about people that do not sport a traditional hourglass shape and call themselves curvy.
Does this really matter so much to the rest of the world that the word curvy is getting a second definition if it helps a fair amount of people gain a better and more loving self image. While I personally have made my peace with the word fat and have no problem calling myself a fatty at times, it is still hurtful for many. I am sure the word curvy will have contributed to giving a lot of women out there a positive self image, they can identify with.
Official Reason For Ban – Nudity
So why have they banned it. A spokesperson from Instagram apparently stated that a lot of the images tagged with the hashtag #curvy contained a lot of nudity.
Just the fact that a lot of the images that contained this hashtag apparently also contained a lot of nudity to blanket ban it, while a lot insulting and bullying terms can still readily be used by the trolls out there to put people down, that is just not a jhourglassshapeustification and a completely wrong approach.
This Is What Instagram Still Allows
So let’s have a look at what Instagram in it’s endevour to reduce nudity still allows: like #dildo, #sextoys, #asses, #pornos, #bigfatass, #titsandass and #pornstargay, these are fine but #curvy clearly has to go.
Next to these sexual terms Instagram also allows you to search for an array of negative and insulting terms regarding overweight that are not only containing a lot of nudity (depending on the specific term in question) but also are used to bully people some examples are #obese, #fatf***, #fatbitch and #fatpig. Yay for Instagrams priorities.
So now let’s have a look at what happens on the other side of the weight range, ins specific: what happens when you search for keywords like skinny or thin. Shouldn’t those attract pretty much the same type of pictures and shouldn’t Instagram react in the exact same way here? Well yes to question 1 (some nudity here as well) but a big fat no to question 2.
Instagram obviously is aware that that these pictures are containing an amount of nudity as they warn you when you when you click on the hashtag that the results contain graphic content, so they are aware of the nudity here. However these terms along with other searchable terms like #ana and #mia are known trigger terms for eating disorders, which Instagram also seems to be aware off and solves with a link to an eating disorder site, but you can still go through and admire the thigh gaps and see all the images of self harm, diet tips and food diaries.
So bottom line is they do allow sexual terms, derogatory terms all aspects of the other side of the weight range, despite being aware with all the issues connected with those terms, while a term that has had body positive effects for so many people gets straight away banned? Wait can somebody please explain that for me? I am not sure I understand their logic.
Why Not The Same Type Of Warning?
For some clarification. I am not asking to ban keywords like skinny, but rather ask for same treatment for the word curvy. Couldn’t they have slapped another one of those content warnings on it? If you like even with a link to a nutrition page for help with weight issues if someone at Instagram is worried about the health of the posters.
Not sure about their agendy
The bottom line is, I am not quite sure what their agenda is here. I can’t believe that the ultimate goal was to decrease nude pictures and their accessibility. Firstly because of all the offensive terms out there that I can’t believe they have not approached before this one but mainly because there is a very simple and targeted solution if they really wanted to target nude pictures.
If It Is About Nudity Why Not Use Nudity Detection Software?
Monitor the keyword with a program scanning for images containing nudity would be the perfect solution… Captain Obvious. Yes these programs do exist, they were made to speed up checking computers of suspects for illegal pornography and the way they work is scanning images for flesh tones (a little more complicated but that is the bottom line). These programs are so good, they can do this even for black and white pictures.
Apply this, with a few employees who check the pictures that it spits out as blocked. If you want to go with even less effort directly block the images or warn the users that their image is going to be blocked within a few hours if they don’t submit it for a review and boom only those are are submitted for being falsely detected need to be reviewd even more time saved. There you go, a fairly non complicated and targeted solution found.
An Alternative Movement Is Already There
Luckily the body positive movement is alive and well and there is already a protest movement forming within Instagram that have come up with an alternative term. So you don’t need to use the words from the list above, use the tag #curvee. There are already more than 500 images with this tag and they are getting more by the minute.
What Do You Think
So what do you think about the #curvy search ban? What do you think about Instagrams approach and will you miss the term or do you think it won’t make a big difference? I would love to hear from you.
On the 17th of June Next launched their new Summer Lingerie range and hosted a bloggers event for the kick off of the range but even more important to demonstrate their bra fitting service and last but not least if not to say best of all to announce their new summer DD+ range that will now include bras going up to a size 40H.
While their “normal” range was available from the 17th onwards, the DD+ Range will only physically hit the shelves of the Arndale Center in mid July, it is already available online, so you can have a browse online now and then check it out in store later this month.
As it seems if you want to get your hands on the 40+ sizes you will be forced to set foot in a next store as most larger sizes appear to have sold out online, most likely due to them only hitting the store shelves later as mentioned above.
The Summer Lingerie Range & The DD+ Range
The base range comes in 5 different base bra types which you can see below. All bras are available in a wide range of colours, including some stunning ombre versions.
To be honest the only real difference between the base range and the DD+ range are some little design updates in order to better support a larger busts (i.e. wider straps etc.). They state on their website:
Pure femininity in our new DD+ lingerie, desinged and tailor made especially for the fuller bust – wider straps, more support and softer linings for ultimate comfort and fit. All our key styles and shapes are available from everyday t-shirt bras to elegant premium lace in all your favourite colours.
However I cannot verify this because as mentioned above I have only seen pictures of the DD+ range so far. My favourite piece so far though is one of their embroided bras in the Phoebe style .
They Could Have Gone A Little Larger
It is an absolute shame that while they are increasing their range, they do not go a step further and don’t go for an even larger under bust band than 40, but let’s hope that is the next step for autumn. Please Next. I will give you all my money if you just make a bra in size 44E.
80% of Women Wearing The Wrong Bra Size
I am really happy to find another shop selling plus-size lingerie on the high street. It is really important to be able to try things on, something thinner women take for granted that still isn’t the norm for us plus-size ladies. Clothes can fit very differently on different people, you might have seen in a few videos or blog posts that have recently made the rounds.
A good fit is even more important when it comes to lingerie as a bra should fit you perfectly to give you the right support and lift. Particularly as wearing the wrong bra can have far worse effects than only misshaped boobs, leading to bad back pain and bad posture.
Despite this around 80% of women apparently wear the wrong bra size and I am pretty sure this number is even higher when it comes to us plus size women, due to the rarer availability of lingerie and especially shops where you could try them on and quite often we might be simply too lazy to send something back that we ordered online that does not fit quite right (I am guilty of that!).
The Next Bra Fitting
With this in mind each of us was given a bra fitting on the day by one of their fitting experts and despite them not offering my bra size, it was the best fitting I have had in a long time. I was measured a few times over the last months, but was never fully happy with what I came out with after.
While other shops very much preach the use of the measuring tape and the theoretical calculation of your size, the ladies of next prefer an individual and visual fitting of bras. In practice that meant they asked me to show them the bra I was wearing at the time and evaluated how the bra was fitting me, the support the cups provided and how my bust was fitting in it as well as the width and fit of the back and shoulder straps.
Obviously, I Was One Of The 80%
The result in my case was that I was wearing a bra that was too big, both in cup as well as in under-bust size . As mentioned above they were unfortunately not able to verify the bra size they came up with as they were not offering the 44E-F that I would have needed, but they were even so nice to provide me with a list of shops that might offer nice bras in this size. Having tried it out now, I have to admit that they were right and provided the best bra fitting service I had in a while.
Worth Dropping In If Your Size Might Fall Into Their Range
So if you are yourself somewhere in the area of up to a 40H bra size I can only recommend to check out your nearest Next shop, get measured and have a look at their bras. For the rest of us, I very much hope that they will very soon be expanding their range further maybe for the autumn range already? Please Next.
I really do love the range. It is bold, a bit edgy but not over the top or slutty. It has just a lot of fierce pieces, that are unapologetic for being plus size. In short exactly what the plus-size fashion scene needs more of.
As much as I love the pieces though, there is one issue with them. A very large proportion of the range are very close cut to tbe body, many of the dresses are in a bodycon style. Ultimately there is nothing wrong with this, but for some of these pieces you either have to be happy to show and own your “VBO” (Visible Belly Outline) or size up.
Big Body Confidence Steps – VBO A Step I Have Not Made Yet
For most of the range I would advise to size up, but as I am a size 24, which is as large as Boohoo’s Plus Size Range goes, my only option was to own up to my VBO. I have come far in my time blogging accepting myself and my body, owning my bare arms, strapless jumpsuits and even my very first bikini (the full post has been lost, but I’ll rewrite it soon)
However the VBO is just one of the things that has been a bit difficult for me to own up to and I (on myself) simply do not find attractive and a good style to wear out. This is not a generic statement, expressing that no-one should. If you are happy showing the world your VBO I salute you, please please do it. I personally battle with myself if it comes to this
So despite immediately falling in love with the Nadia Off The Shoulder Zip Front Dress* below in blue (which is also available in black), I had it lying around here for quite a while till I mustered up the courage to share it with you guys.
It looks really amazing on Nadia. On me though I was not quite sure what I thought about it. I loved it too much to send it back but was unhappy enough with it to hesitate sharing it with you or being ok wearing it outside. What do you think?
I am not too happy with the way it it at the moment and would not wear it on its own, but my issue is that I am at the very edge of their sieizes. If you are either happy with your VBO or able to size up, this dress will look absolutely stunning on you. And now the dress has even been reduced to only £12
A Sportier Look With The Nadia Embossed Hoodie
I hoped that help for my issue with the VBO would come from another piece I really from the Nadia Range, the Embossed Sleeve Hoodie. While it can be worn like your traditional hoodie, this one is quite a bit more stylish than the average hoodie and is perfect to give your favourite short to medium dress a more sporty look. In the campaign itself Nadia is wearing it with the Split Shoulder Dress (now reduced to £5!).
Ultimately I also added some leggings to the outfit. The dress it great to show of a nice pair of plus-size legs, but as short as this dress is, it will almost definitely lead to chub rub on said plus-size legs without a pair of tights. I personally am one of those people who don’t get away with wearing a dress without tights or leggings. A pair of leggings can also work with the hoodie transforming this dress made more for a night out to an even more sporty look, but see the two different looks yourself below.
Maybe I’ll soon be fitting in the dress a bit better. I am currently working on getting a bit fitter again after I have noticed that I am out of breath again a lot quicker and my blood pressure has gone a bit up. The additional exercise and looking a bit more after what I eat, has lead to some weight loss, and so maybe continuing the weight loss I might reach a fit with which I might actually be happy wearing the dress out.
What do you think?
Do you dare sporting a VBO? Do you think I should drop my insecurities and wear the dress out as it is? Do you prefer the dress with our without leggings What do you think about the Nadia range?