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

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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

#MAAfterDark – It’s All About The Party Dress

UNIQUE wedding dresses

 #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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#MAAfterDark – From The Yours Dressing Room

Partay! Today!

The day has come, tonight is the day of the Manchester Arndale After Dark event, an event all around the most important piece of clothing this season, the party dress. You can follow the event following the hashtag #MAAfterDark on Twitter & Instagram.

Win A Party Dress Yourself

There will be lots of stuff happening from food & drink to beautifying and a glam dress competition in which the top 10 dresses will be crowned. Finally you, as an Arndale shopper, will have a chance to win one of the top 1o crowned dresses as your very own.

Shopping Time!

Well it was time for me to go party dress shopping for the day. It is a cliché but I did feel like a kid in the candy shop in the Yours shop in Manchester. The lovely Debby, who was absolutely amazing and seemed almost more excited than I was, if that was possible, helped me narrow down my choice to three dresses.

A lot of fun while shopping – what else with this kind of assistance

Which One Would Have You Chosen?

As the event is happening tonight, I have obviously already chosen one of those dresses,but I won’t tell you yet which one made the cut. I want to keep this a surprise till the event (check my instagram feed) and even more importantly. I would love to hear your opinion which one would you have chosen?

Dress# 1

 Black & Nude Pink Floral Lace Sleeveless Skater Prom Dress

Dress# 2

Black Sleeveless Fringed Dress

 

Dress# 2

 

 

Black Lace Swing Dress With Contrast Insert

Oh And There Is A Discount!

I also just got an email through that Yours Clothing is currently giving you 25% of EVERYTHING, in store and online. Although they have not stated how long this offer is going to last. So I guess if you had your eye on something, now it might be worth to head over to their website or one of their stores.

Capture yours

 

 

Lots of love

Signoff

#LightsCameraCurrys

A Much Loved But Unfortunately Neglected Hobby

As a blogger photography is a crucial skill. Without pictures you lovelies would have no idea what I would be talking about. The old cliché just holds true. A picture says more than a 1000 words.

I used to do a lot of photography and absolutely loved it. You can have a look at my old fotocummunity.de account here. However, then life kicked in and I was busy with uni and work. The endresult was: I have not properly been using my beloved EOS 400D as much as I would like and for far to long it has been stuck on automatic. Unfortunatelly I have lost so much of my knowledge about how to take the best pictures making use of all the settings…

So I was dead excited when I was invited to take part in the #LightCameraCurrys Workshop, which was organised by Currys  and the Joe Blogs Network to help bloggers take control of their cameras and get off the auto setting.

The Workshop

The Workshop took place in the The Manchester Photographic School. And I actually have had my eye on some of their courses. So this was an absolute win.

Christian our host lead us through all common questions. Firstly how to get your camera off auto mode. Addressing things like how to make use of ISO to make best use of the available lighting. Leading on how to choose the right shutter speed depending on the speed the object you want to photograph is moving at and which effect you want and also aperture which helps you achieve great depth of you can use it to achieve great depth of field effects.

Shutterspeed

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Exposure – 1/200


Exposure – 1 Second.

A short exposure time enables you to take sharp pictures of a moving opject avoiding blurred lines. A longer exposure allows you to capture more light but can also lead to movement blurring. This is an effect that can also be used to artistically capture movement. Here is an example of this in a picture I took a few years ago.

lichter-in-der-dunkelheit-54f3702f-f5bb-4d6c-bf99-ad725bad130e

Aperture

While the camera can only focus on one point, aperture influences the size of the area in front and behind the area of this point that appears in focus. A small aperture will result in a small range while a larger one will result in a larger range.
Here is an example from during the course playing around with a short range:

 

Time For Practicing What We Have Learnt

No photography course it complete without a practice part. The perfect place for this was th  Food & Drink Festival that was happening in Manchester at the time. After being separated into groups each of us got a task, from capturing the food preparation, to groups or individuals.

I was in the food group, our task was it to capture the food itself and particularly the process of it being made. One of the tips was to go in close and to experiment with the depth of field that I mentioned above.

As usual I obsessed a little bit over a few subjects trying to get the perfect picture. So the time flew by and I obsessed bit about a few objects like for example the pizza  that you will see in the images below. But I think I still got a few nice images in the end of the day.

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Thanks to Joe Blogs, Currys and The Manchester Photographic School for this great day and all the tips.

Follow Up Post: Digitally Enhancing The Images

I used to also spend ages on digitally working on the images, ending up with some great effects. However, this is where I will have to stop for now. With a lot of overtime recently a trip to Germany and a lot of other big things happening recently I had to admit to myself that the day does not have enough hours at the moment to pick image editing back up.

So I decided to let you have a first look at these pictures as they are and to be honest, I actually do like them as they are and I did not want to make you wait any longer.

I guess soon there will be a follow up post in which I will pick out one or two of the above pictures to see what I can do with them. So look forward to another slightly off topic post and some more photo tips soon.

I Would Love To Hear From You

Like always I would love to hear from you. Do you have any favourite photographs that you have taken? Share them with me! Or do you have maybe any great photo tips to share? Let me know.

Lots of love

Signoff

The House Of Fraser – An Unexpected Place For A Bargain*

Great To Discover New Shops

One of the best things since I started my blog is not only that it has encouraged me to question and develop my own style significantly over the last months or that I have met a lot of great people through it, but also that it gave me the chance to discover a lot of great places to find new plus-size fashion and inspiration.

The Hose Of Fraser – A Bargain?

Today I want to talk about one of these cases. A few weeks back a representative from the House of Fraser contacted me,asking if I might be interested to review some of their fashion. However, knowing what I thought I knew about the House of Fraser: it being quite a high profile retailer, I thought I would not get very far with my budget.

I was not only surprised about the choice of plus-size fashion available,  but even more by the price range available. Yes, like you expect a large proportion of their range is tin he luxury clothing bracket, however they also have a surprising amount of affordable plus-size clothing. Spending only £30, which is most likely less than the average Simply Be or Yours Clothing dress. I even managed to find two pieces: a lovely dress and a  skirt.

 

My Choice

Samya Spot Dress With Lace & Net Hem

As you know if you follow my blog, I am a big fan of polka dots. I also love the little detail of  the net hem, reminding of a petticoat.

Samya Spot Dress With Lace & Net Hem – £15*

I love this little dress. It is true to size and has just the length that I like in dresses. For reference, I am 5’9 (1.75m) The lace detailing is in my opinion, what sets it for apart and makes it look like a much more expensive dress than it is.

House of Fraser

Samya Layered Pleated Midi Skirt

Midi skirts are great for autumn and I recently have developed a love for pleated skirt, something about them does very much remind me of my childhood and my late grandmother.  So this skirt is basically a double win. Also the leather detail is a lovely detailing.

Samya Layered Pleated Midi Skirt – £15*

I like the skirt, although I am not as impressed with it as I was with the dress. I was hoping it would have a look that is a bit of a cross between tutu and pleated skirt, but the leather details don’t hang as nicely as pleats in real live as I would have hoped for. It is a nice skirt and I would still recommend it, although it is not as nice as I would have hoped for.

Have A Look Yourself

As mentioned above I was not even aware that the House Of Fraser did Plus Size, nor that it even is so affordable. Next to some well known brands like Evans they also have several less well known brands, some of which I had never heard of before. So I would say it is definately worth a look around.

What Do You Think?

I’d love to know what you think. Did  you know the House of Fraser do plus-size? What is your favourite piece?

Lot’s of love

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