ASOS Curve chinos

Since I discovered the joys of vintage inspired dresses about 5 years ago, I’ve barely worn trousers, like ever! Up until last week I had literally no pairs of trousers or jeans in my wardrobe, beyond leggings, active wear and pyjamas! 

So when I realised I was going to need trousers for a costume for a dance show I’m in later in the year I started browsing my favourite plus retailers for possible options… My character is a male, old style gangster and the brief was ‘black trousers’ so I wanted something that would be suitable for the show (and comfortable to dance in!) as well as being a new addition to my wardrobe. (I couldn’t afford to buy something to be worn once and EBay wasn’t offering up any cheapy options!).

When I stumbled across these ASOS Curve chinos I thought I’d found exactly what I was after! They’d pass as men’s trousers for the show and I’d be happy to wear them as part of my regular day wear. I’m never quite sure on ASOS sizing (sometimes I find they come up small) so I ordered a UK size 28. I think I would have been better off with a 26 but was worried they’d be too tight for dancing!

Top: Evans – past season, Chinos: ASOS, Pumps: Primark

These trousers are super comfortable (I was worried as I hadn’t worn trousers for over 2 years!) with belt loops (although the waistline is low on the hips so none of my belts actually fit to do up!) and fully functional front + bum pockets. They sit on my ankle – so I’m hoping that will prevent me slipping over on them mid moon-walk during the show! 

I’m absolutely head over heels in love with these trousers and had loads of comments about them when I wore them to work. I think they’re excellent value too, for £22! I might buy myself a second pair in a smaller size if I find myself wearing them often enough.

Now I need to find myself some more tops to wear with them!

Monochrome with Joanie Clothing

This week I received my first Joanie Clothing order and I was soooooooo excited to try out some of their vintage pieces! I recently discovered the brand when I saw a few blogger babes reviewing some of their knitwear and liked their style. I love a vintage-inspired brand so I was keen to take a little look! 

Their website offers a cute selection of vintage style or kitch clothing all in sizes 8-22 with some pieces going up to a 26, which is a reasonably good size range. But when they claim they’re ‘inclusive‘ and for ‘every body‘ it’s a little disappointing …particularly if you’re above a size 26! I’m a size 24/26 depending on the cut or style so I was a bit worried about the fit if their sizes ran small.

After several online “window shopping” sessions I finally took the plunge last weekend to place an order! I was looking for a black and white outfit to wear to my sister-in-law’s birthday party and their sale had a couple of bargain outfit options I thought were far too good to miss!

I opted for the Betty Monochrome Stripe Dress as my first outfit choice (and a bargain for £12 reduced from £40) and also thought I’d try a Phoebe Polka-dot Blouse with a Lula Skirt as a back up (totalling £22.50 for both). I ordered everything in a 26…

I liked that the Betty dress framed my back tattoo and that it was a good fit. I was also impressed that the bow detail belt actually fit – which sadly isn’t always a given with plus size garments so this was a solid plus! On the other hand, I was a bit disappointed that the pleats hadn’t been pressed very well and it sat crumpled and uneven (this may have been because it was a return item as the bag it came in looked like it had been taped up a few times). I’d also planned to wear the dress with my frilly petticoat but even when I had it pulled up to my boobs it sat too long under the skirt (above, right) and looked a bit silly! To be fair to the dress, though the fabric is quite firm so it has a bit of shape to it without the petticoat (above, left) so I would probably be happy to wear the dress without it. However…the whole reason for buying this dress was because I wanted to wear a petticoat with it so it was different to this one (below, right) from Everything £5… Without the petticoat and the neat boxy pleats they’re a bit samey… 😟 so, regretfully I’m thinking of returning it.

So I had high hopes that my back up selection would be a winner!

I really wanted to love this outfit, but I didn’t. The pleats of the skirt weren’t crisp enough, yet again! In fact this time they weren’t even very evenly spaced. The shape of the skirt didn’t look very A-line on my body because my hips seemed to mess up the intended silhouette (I have other skirts and dresses that don’t do this so I know I’m not expecting the impossible!). The blouse is kind of cute, though. It fits nicely (although there is some bra peep-age at the arm holes) and was a steal for just £7.50! The pussybow is detachable (I think) which handy because the way it sits under the collar pulls the collar out of shape so I think it will look better without it. I might even make a little bow out of the fabric that I can pin at the collar if I fancy… I’ll have to keep an eye out for a skirt to go with it now.

So, my first Joanie Clothing experience was a bit of a mixed bag. I love the way the clothes look on their site. The pieces I bought all fitted OK and we’re made of good quality fabric. Sadly the creases in the pleated items have put me off a little so I might be more selective when shopping with them in future. I haven’t been put off yet – mainly because they offer sensibly priced cute, vintage-inspired fashion in a size that fits me and I believe everyone deserves a second chance! 😊

…and I’m still on the hunt for my perfect black and white party dress! 

Hearts and Flowers at CFF 

Hearts and Flowers at CFF 

It’s been a whole week since Curve Fashion Festival and I haven’t blogged about it at all yet! I had loads planned – like, a “who I met” one, a “what was in my VIP goody bag” one and a “what I bought” one as well as some about the brands I particularly fell in love with. But I came home from CFF (it was a bloody nightmare of a journey!) and basically got poorly immediately! I spent my evenings after work sleeping and recuperating! I haven’t even looked through my goody bag properly yet!

So in order to restore my blogger mojo I thought I’d start by telling you about MY outfit for CFF! 

I chose one of my Silly Old Sea Dog dresses – this heart print, sleeved number was originally available for Valentines Day but I figure love isn’t seasonal so I’ve been wearing it all year! 

The dress itself was a statement piece so I hadn’t really intended to wear any jewellery but when I spotted the camera heart necklace on Pamper and Curves selling page on Instagram I thought it would go perfectly! 

(loads of people commented on the necklace on the day but as I bought it second hand I don’t know where it was from and can’t find it for sale anywhere I’m afraid!). I also added a pair of Babycham graffiti print trainers (I have various pairs of Babycham trainers – it’s an obsession!) so I could comfortably stomp around all day long!

…my new Paperchase satchel (which isn’t on their website…Sorry!).

…to finish it off I added a Rosadior hair flower accessory in my vintage inspired hair-do…

I was a bit nervous about going to a place filled to the brim with plus size style icons dresses in something less than subtle! But I felt that it was important to wear something that I loved and that I felt a million dollars in. Silly Old Sea Dog dresses never fail to give me that feeling. They’re so very “me” and kind of sum up my “vintage toddler” vibe.
My confidence was given a massive boost when I was approached by a reporter from The Liverpool Echo who was doing a feature on the festival’s “Best Dressed”. I feel like a bit of a fraud when compared to those stylish goddesses – but I’m still enjoying the compliment. 😊

Finally here’s a photo taken by the amazing Kitty Rambles A Lot – I really want to book a proper photo shoot now!

I had the most incredible day. I have so much more to tell you about the event and the impact it has had on me! Watch this space.

Did you go to CFF or have you seen pics of the event? Who were your style faves?!

 

A Day at the Races!

A Day at the Races!

Last Saturday was one of those magical days when everything seems to fall into place… It was my 35th birthday and I was lucky enough to spend it at Newmarket Races in their VIP bit (it was my husband’s work do) where we were treated to horse racing and a Little Mix performance! By some lucky coincidence my cousins were also there celebrating my cousin’s 30th birthday (her birthday is the day before mine) so I was able to gatecrash their party too – result! 

I’ve not been to the races before (except for doing agency work at Newmarket when I was a student) so wasn’t really sure what to wear… I wanted to look fancy without feeling overdressed so decided to go vintage as I feel less self conscious if I’m dressed up for some reason! I also wanted to save some money by shopping my wardrobe so I decided to go for my Pin Up Girl Penny dress in Harlequin print (mine is a different colour from a previous season – bought from my lovely blogger friend Tanya from Secret Plus Size Goddess). I teamed it with another blogger purchase – a domino Red or Dead clutch (from the fabulous Lolly Likes FATshion -and I’ve seen a couple on EBay) a Rosadior hair flower, and some sparkly silver sandals from Evans (previous season).

 

And here’s a few pictures from the day:

Our view from the VIP bit across the track

My gorgeous cousins 😍😍
Husband and I may have had a few Pimms
Got a bit nearer for Little Mix!

I had an awesome day – I’d definitely recommend the races for a special day out! The added bonus of a concert at the end was a real treat – even if we were a bit cut off from the gig atmosphere across the racetrack (which is why I went nearer!). You’ll need pretty deep pockets if you’re a big drinker though, as drinks were really expensive (£6 for a can of Pimms, almost £30 for a jug of Pimms! Single mini bottles of Moet we a stonking £20!). But we had a bit of beginners luck with the horses and managed to back a winner which helped with the drinks kitty! 

One of my favourite things about the day was dress watching – there were just so many gorgeous dresses to ooh and ahh over! I was also approached by a lady complimenting my dress!

Have you ever been to the races? What did you wear?!

Pretty in Pink – with Simply Be!

Pretty in Pink – with Simply Be!

Hello all! I recently Instagrammed this little sneaky peek of my latest Simply Be haul:

I thought maybe it was time to share the full ensemble with you as my next contribution to the lovely Leah (from LoveLeah)‘s Outfit August – where a wee band of blogger babes are dressing up and sharing their outfits (right up my street!)

I ordered the Sprinkle of Glitter pink scuba skirtSole Diva cross strap pumps (in pale pink) and a twist knot top (in black). But the top wasn’t quite right so I’m going to try a different size and look for alternatives too… 

So here’s how the final outfit came together… 

I love that this skirt comes with a belt so I’d tried to pick out shoes to match the colour of the belt Louise (Sprinkle of Glitter) is wearing in the photo on the Simply Be site but unfortunately the belt that came with my skirt was more of a hot pink rather than the dusky/light pink I’d expected. Thankfully the belt was long enough (it’s a common issue for plus size belts to not fit the waistline of the dress they’re intended to accessorise!) but the holes weren’t far enough along the belt so I’m going to have to punch my own (yep I’ve got an industrial-strength leather hole punch!). It’s not a huge issue for me.

I really like the flower print pattern of the skirt – the variety of pink and purple shades there to pick out in accessories and/or a pretty casual or going out top makes it pretty versatile. As someone who generally only wears dresses, this offers me a lot of options. 

For some reason I’ve always avoided pointy shoes in favour of round toed ones but (because I thought they’d go well with the skirt/belt) I decided to give these pointy toe (wide fit) flats a go. I’m so pleased I did! They’re comfortable and cute (a winning combination for me!). Expect to see a lot more of them in future posts!

I added a pretty pink headscarf and my #TeamFatsApp necklace (custom made by Funky Laser for a group of us who used to chat a lot on WhatsApp). The skirt goes so well with the necklace I was thinking of wearing them as part of my outfit to Curve Fashion Fest when I’ll get to meet lots of my fellow Team Fats App babes (and lots of other amazing ladies) but if I do decide to wear it I think I need to find a more suitable top…

I’ll be posting a wishlist of contenders in the next few days – keep your eye out! 

Check out the other lovely bloggers taking part in Outfit August for some awesome outfit inspiration:


LeahHannaChristyNikkiKate

Another Wedding Guest Outfit – with Lindy Bop!

Another Wedding Guest Outfit – with Lindy Bop!

Another weekend, another wedding! This time it was the evening reception for an old friend and ex-work colleague at an incredibly grand venue, Gosfield Hall in Essex. It’s also my first opportunity to take part in Outfit August with the lovely LoveLeah (formerly Just Me Leah)!

Because I’d gone to the effort of getting my nails done for last weekend (and the gel polish was holding out!) I had planned another outfit around my light blue nails and my beautiful peacock print Bagladee clutch bag (I haven’t linked to her this time as sadly she’s no longer making them 😭):

As most of you have probably noticed, I love a bargain! Whether it’s a blogger hand-me-down, eBay find or sale item I’ve got the nose for sniffing out the bargains – which is handy as it’s the only way I can afford to feed my dress habit!

I’m already a big fan of Lindy Bop dresses – the variety of styles, colours and sizes available (up to a smallish size 26) at reasonable prices means I’m like a kid in a sweet shop! When they have a sale on, I’m delirious with excitement! 

In their most recent sale I picked up a navy blue Audrey for £9 – with the intention of teaming it with my beautiful clutch bag. Here’s how the outfit panned out:

You can’t see the petticoat in the other pictures so I thought you might appreciate this one – we sneaked into the bridal suite…!

These ones were also taken in the bridal suite – this was essentially a HUGE bay window with the most incredible mirrors I’d ever seen!

Dress: Lindy Bop (past season but similar here)

Petticoat: ‘Banned’ (from eBay)

Sandals: Evans (past season but similar here) 

Hair flowers: Rosadior (these were a Secret Santa gift from one of my fellow bloggers but I’m not totally sure who!)

Check out the other lovely bloggers taking part in Outfit August:

Leah,Hanna,Christy,Nikki,Kate

ASOS Curve Wiggle Cut Out Back Dress Review

Yesterday I spent the day with my family (sans kids) celebrating my youngest cousin tying the knot. It was a truly beautiful day! Knowing that I’d be spending the day child-free meant I didn’t have to worry so much about getting smeared in child goo so I decided to risk it and go for this ASOS pale blue wiggle dress. (currently in the sale reduced to £29).

Last week I talked about the not so constructive feedback about this particular choice of outfit so today I’m going to just focus on showing you how it looked and giving a little review so you can draw your own conclusions! 😊

When the dress arrived it was rather creased – I kind of hoped these would drop out so I kept it hanging up for well over a week with no joy. So I had to dig out the iron. The care label said to iron on a low heat, on reverse without steam. This had no affect whatsoever so I took a gamble and gradually turned the iron up. 3 attempts – up to a medium heat (and a burnt arm) and a steamy bathroom made little difference to the dress so I had no option but to wear it creased. 😞 I think it looked alright but it wasn’t the high-end, slick look I was hoping for (perhaps my hopes were a bit high for a £42 dress reduced to £29 but I like seeking out bargains to achieve champagne chic on a beer budget!).

This is the first time I’ve got my husband to take photos for my blog – and he makes me laugh A LOT and he got me pratting about! I liked the silly/laughing photos more than the traditional poses so I kept them in! 

As well as the crease issues, I also managed to rip the front slit on the front of the dress along the seam. The dress wasn’t tight at all (I’d upsized because I thought it looked better being slightly baggy) so it was a bit annoying that it tore so easily. The material (or maybe the stitching) didn’t have much stretch to it and was a bit too flimsy in my opinion – which is a real shame.

I styled the dress with a pair of sparkly peep toe heels I bought for £4 off eBay (similar here – although not quite as cheap!)… 

…this beautiful clutch bag…

…and an old long-line necklace…

…and vintage hair combs (which I wore for my own wedding almost 8 years ago!)

I totally forgot to take any more photos from the back so this will have to do!

I loved the style and overall look of the dress, particularly the cut out back which framed my tattoo and the hang of the sleeves. I think I’d like it better if it had been made in a heavier fabric with a bit of stretch. Overall I loved the look and it was nice to try something different to my usual vintage inspired swing dress look!