Wednesday, December 30, 2015

My Favourite Outfits from 2015: A Round Up

The year is very nearly out, and so I thought I would do a little round up of my favourite pieces of the year. So below are my eight favourite pieces from this year, from brands including Voodoo Vixen, Scarlett & Jo, Panache, Simply Be, Studio 8, Lady Voluptuous and Lindy Bop, and a little bit about why I love them so much. My Best of 2015...

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

All the Excitement! I'm a Brand Ambassador for Scarlett & Jo

My favourite prom skirt, from a previous collection
Today I am absolutely delighted to announce that I am the newest brand ambassador for Scarlett & Jo! I am really excited to be associated with a body positive brand who prioritise listening to their customers, and engaging with the plus size community, rather than assuming what women might want from fashion.  So, I am pretty thrilled to be on board!

Friday, December 18, 2015

She Wore Blue Velvet... Blue Velvet Twist Front Dress from Simply Be

Along with the traditional reds, greens, golds and silvers, midnight blue always feels festive to me. Back in September I reviewed this dress in leopard print, so when I saw Simply Be had released it in midnight blue velvet for Christmas I was over the moon.


Monday, December 14, 2015

Me and My Body: Our Journey

I have been trying to write this post for almost a year. I have a notebook filled with ideas for posts that I want to write – little stubs of things that I never quite get round to doing. But top of that list has been to write a post about the journey my body and I have been on together. I am not the first person to do one of these posts. In fact most plus size bloggers will have written something along these lines at some point. What’s interesting about these stories is that although each one is different there are striking similarities between them all. There are themes. There are familiar situations, feelings, reactions repeated over and over again.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Santa Baby: Elomi Anushka Babydoll

This red and black number from Elomi is exactly the sort of thing I'd want to find in my Christmas stocking. (And I'm sure the wearing of it could be quite a gift for your significant other). When I first put it on I couldn't help singing some Santa Baby, and then, obviously laughing at myself. So when the team at Anushka said I could review something for them, I knew this was the one. Not only are the colours perfect for this time of year, but I got to add to my growing collection of babydolls - my new favourite type of lingerie.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Black and Gold: Christmas at Evans

A couple of weeks ago, Georgina (GG) from She Might Be Loved and I spent a day together in London. We lunched, we chatted, we browsed and we were hosted by the lovely team at Evans Marble Arch for an epic afternoon of shopping. The flagship store on Oxford Street was packed with glittering festive fashion and we had a ball trying on just about everything. There were loads of options for casual and work wear, but GG and I being the girls that we are we went straight for the sparkly gorgeousness. We simply could not get enough sequins! From the pieces I came home with I decided to create three looks to get you through the party season. (Make sure to check out GG's post about her haul too.)

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Luxury, Velvet Curves: Scarlett & Jo Velvet Fishtail in Atonement Green

Back in October I spent the day with the team at Scarlett & Jo, along with some other plus size beauties, modelling the AW collection for the new Scarlett & Jo website. I wore so many beautiful dresses that day I started to lose count. But my absolute favorite was the Atonement Green velvet maxi dress. No doubt you've seen the below picture before if you follow me on any of my social media channels - I've posted it enough times! So I was absolutely delighted when a special version of this dress arrived for me from the team.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Briefs, Panties, Knickers: Talking All Things Pants

Following the announcement that next year the V&A museum here in London will be holding an exhibition about underwear, Simply Be recently posed the question 'Would you wear gender neutral pants?' on their blog this week. It got me thinking about pants in general. It's one of those items of clothing that most people have pretty strong feelings about. Pants are an integral part of most people's day.  We've all got our preferences, and our limits. 

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Serving Up 70s Realness: Pink Clove Gia Tie Neck Dress

Plus Size Tights - Primark
14 Hole Teal Dr Martens - eBay

I have been in love with this dress since I first saw it come down the runway at Curvy Fashion Fest in September. I love Pink Clove for their unusual prints (I adored the print of this Bardot dress I reviewed earlier this year) and their refreshing take on day dresses, as well as the way they interpret and restyle key trends each season for the plus size market. This 70s tribute dress is absolutely gorgeous, so I was so pleased when I was offered it to review.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Winning Best New Blog at the British Plus Size Awards with Panache and Dynasty

I am still buzzing from this weekend. I was wowed, awed, thrilled and overjoyed to win Best New Blog at the British Plus Size Awards on Saturday night, and I feel like I haven’t yet come down from cloud nine. The event was a black tie affair held in the beautiful ball room at the Radisson Blu Portman Hotel, and I got to enjoy an evening spent with some of the most inspiring and gorgeous women I know, all dressed to the nines and plied with bubbles – hello heaven!

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Courageous Kali: Review of Purple Kali Babydoll from Panache

Sometimes you forget how far you have come on your own journey. When this gorgeous Kali Babydoll first arrived from the lovely team at Panache, I snapped a quick mirror selfie of it and popped it on my Instagram account. Doing that was a pretty big moment for me, and when I revealed this to a friend she said, "You just come across so fearless to me now I forget you are in fact human".  I still have hang ups, and posting images of myself in lingerie is still daunting, but when I look at these images now instead of being drawn to a collection of my flaws I am able to see the good things about my body. I have down days, and I don't think that will ever leave me completely, but the honest fact is I feel sexy in pieces like this and for a long time I didn't think that was possible unless my body changed. But what needed to change was my mindset. 

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Charisse the Sequined Showgirl: Review of the Charisse Full Cup Bra and Brief Set from Sculptresse by Panache

It's the season for sparkles and I am loving this Vegas inspired, sequin printed bra from Sculptresse by Panache. Since the great boob revolution, I have been exploring the world fuller bust lingerie, and I was thrilled when I learned about Sculptresse, who not only do bigger cup sizes but bigger back sizes so they really cater for the plus size market. And joy of joys, there designs range from fun, to pretty, to sexy.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Christmas Lust List: Accessories Gift Guide

I don't very often talk about my deep and abiding love for accessories on my blog, but trust me - it's a love story for the ages. Here I have put together some of my favourite accessories on offer for Christmas this year. Get in my stocking! 

Friday, November 6, 2015

Christmas Lust List: Luxury Beauty Gift Guide

I don't know about you, but the best presents are always the things I want, not the things I need. So over the next few weeks I am going to be putting together a themed lust list every week.

Around Christmas time luxury beauty brands really show us their best work. Special collections, beautiful palettes, one offs and artfully created packaging. And this stuff sells out fast, which is why my first festive lust list is a collection of some of my favourite luxury beauty buys this festive season.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

The Colour Purple: Scarlett & Jo Purple Paisley 40s Dress and Launch of the New Website

It's no secret that I love Scarlett and Jo. Their blend of modern and vintage is right up my alley, and their tailoring is all done specifically with a curvy body in mind. They have recently branched out to work with other retailers (originally they were only sold in Evans), and perhaps most excitingly yesterday they launched their very own website. There is a gorgeous selection of pieces on there (some modelled by yours truly!) and this is one of the dresses I have had my eye on since we did the shoot. 

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Always a Vintage Girl: Review of the Lindy Bop Blue Crane Print Dress

 Looking back at my last few posts it looks like I've been on a bit of a vintage hiatus of late! But never fear, I am back with a proper vintage beauty from Lindy Bop. I have reviewed Lana dresses before, and it is one of my favourite vintage shapes. I wore this to the Curve Fashion Festival in September and the response to the picture I posted on Instagram was inspiring, so I thought it was high time I reviewed this bird print beauty.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Woman In Black: Melissa McCarthy Separates At Evans

The plus size world was abuzz when Melissa McCarthy released her first clothing range earlier this year. In the UK it is sold exclusively by Evans and I was fortunate enough to get to give a couple of pieces a try. I decided to go with classic black in these beautifully made separates. 

Monday, October 19, 2015

Big, Bold Blossoms: Closet Textured Jersey Print Dress From Simply Be

Winter is coming! There is a nip in the air, and instead of worrying how I am going to stay cool enough I am starting to add layers and look longingly at anything with a sleeve. I love Autumn and Winter fashion, but I find so often that there is a dearth of colour. And then there is this Closet dress from Simply Be... Longish sleeves, heavier fabric but a fabulous floral riot of colour. Get in my wardrobe! 

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Arrrrr Matey: Review of the PSL Boutique Vixen Pirate Costume

I love Halloween! What's not to love? Spooky decorations, carved pumpkins, themed sweets, and fancy dress! I love a bit of fancy dress at the best of times, but how exciting to have a day dedicated to becoming someone else for a while. It's all a bit hedonistic and dark. Now, I love a bit of pirate action - the accessories are fabulous - loads of jewelery, big earrings, head scarves; all the men obviously look like Johnny Depp with eyeliner yum; lady pirates are fierce; and I am a fan of rum. So when Plus Size Lingerie Boutique asked me if I wanted to review something for Halloween I had to go with this Pirate look. 

Monday, October 12, 2015

Botanical Boobs: Breeze Longline Bra From Cleo By Panache

A couple of months ago I had a somewhat rude awakening when I realised that I was in fact wearing the completely wrong bra size! In afternoon I went from a 40C to a 38F. Since I have been restocking my lingerie drawer with well fitting prettiness, so I was thrilled when the lovely team at Panache sent me this botanical beauty from their Cleo range. 

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Classic Chic: French Brand Balsamik Lands on British Shores

When a little email dropped into my inbox about the arrival of Balsamik on UK shores I was thrilled. The French brand starts at a size 10, and with many of its pieces running up to a size 30 and 32, they are all about inclusivity.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Adding a Bit of Drama: Evans Collection High Low Hem Top and Ultrastretch Skinny Jeans

And now for something a little different... Evans recently were kind enough to offer me some pieces from their current range to try. It was pretty hard to decide and I spent a good few hours shopping in the Marble Arch flag ship store here in London (the staff are totally brilliant - as they always are in Evans stores - so if you get a chance do pop in!) before I settled on my final picks. They include this gorgeous chiffon top with frill detail and Ultrastretch skinny jeans. 

Monday, September 21, 2015

Nice and Nautical: Voodoo Vixen Joni Dress

Voodoo Vixen's plus size collection continues to go from strength to strength, and their nautical themed Joni dress is my new favourite. Once again they have totally won me over with the gorgeous details.

Friday, September 18, 2015

UK Plus Size Fashion Week 2015: My Top Picks

UK Plus Size Fashion week was a total whirl of bloggers, models, industry insiders, clothes and photographers. Held over three days at a gorgeous central London venue, most of the industry's heavy hitters were present.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Feeling Fierce: Simply Be Leopard Print Twist Front Dress

Leopard print is a fierce, fifties staple and I always adore it, but usually wear it in smaller quantities - a top, a cardigan, some ballet pumps. But when I saw this dress on Simply Be I was feeling brave and decided to order it. This dress felt like a brave departure for me on a few levels. 

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Autumn 2015 Lust List

We're currently being promised an Indian summer. Something we are promised almost every year, which seldom delivers. To avoid disappointment, I am just looking forward to Autumn.

As it get's colder, people gladly reach for new coats, boots and scarves, and for a while the cold feels like a novelty, and red noses and cheeks flushed with chill are endearing. The first morning I see my breath I shiver with excitement - glad for woolens as I crunch purposefully over the first sprinkling of frost on the grass. The delicate dusting of frost is not the only beauty nature offers us in Fall. She also gives as the rusts, reds and russets of autumn, the leaves turning before they drop off the trees and cushion the pavement in a rustling carpet. The colours are a show I missed out on live in the wonderful but steady climate of Durban, South Africa for most of my life. Now, each year the foliage fills me with wonder as I whizz past it on busses and trains, and I find myself picking up fallen leaves on my way home, and find them crushed and crumpled days later in my pockets.

And I am always as in love with this season's fashion as I am with it's colours. Here is my Autumn Lust List...

I am going to start with my most bargain-some pick. From Tesco, at £16 why wouldn't you buy it? I am such a sucker for an oriental print, and the colours in this are gorgeous - I love the complimentary combo of orange and blue. Sadly it is currently sold out above a size 16, but I have it on good authority that they are getting more stock online on 14th September. 

The print, the colours, the shape, the neckline! I love it all. I am lusting after this big time - it would work perfectly through the autumn, but I also would feel pretty smashing in it at a Christmas party.Yes please!

I recently bought this in navy, because let's be honest I am going to struggle to justify adding another red dress to my wardrobe. However, I am starting to have some serious regrets about not adding it to my collection. (Alas, the green - my first choice - is already sold out in my size). This dress is just super easy to wear, the chiffon floats over curves, and the sleeves make me feel somewhat angelic (an unusual feeling, I'll grant you that). And the red is beautifully autumnal. Plus it's a bargain at £35 - get in!

I always like to have a little puddle around Monsoon at the beginning of every season to see what they hasve in store. Sadly they only go up to a size 22, however it is a pretty generous 22 (I am often a 20 at Monsoon) and if you are looking for well cut clothes in quality fabrics, they are a good place to start. I love greek silhouettes, and the Athena here is perfect for those who, like me, have a bit of a goddess complex. This dress is cut in a way that I can just tell it is going to be my curves' best friend. Alas it is sold out in my size on the website, but I think I might pop into a store and see if I can try it on. 

I tend to steer away from pink in my wardrobe. It's just not really my colour. I don't feel myself in it. However, this Joe Brown dress is such a lovely shade, and feels a little edgy with the edition of the black lace and black corset lacing at the back. To me it has a real baroque look to it, which I just love. It's very unusual, and another dress I would adore to wear to a Christmas party, or perhaps New Year's Eve as it has a bit of shine and sheen to it. 

I have an embarrassing confession. I am a fashion blogger, I struggle to squash my clothes into my wardrobe, I am a self confessed shopaholic... and I own one jacket. That I don't like. I really struggle with jackets for some reason. I don't often find ones that I like, and when I do they don't usually fit. I must have an odd body for jackets. But this one! I love the streamlined shape, and I am a sucker for the luxurious, indulgent nature of fur (must be faux, obviously). So yeah. I want this. Big time. How exciting would it be to own a jacket I actually like?!

Any of these on your lust list? What do you love about Autumn, and Fall fashion?


Thursday, September 3, 2015

Is This My Perfect Dress? Studio 8 Yvette Lace Dress

Black Suede Wedges - Primark
Gold Earrings - Primark

This dress is perfection. I mean it. It's perfect. I struggle to believe that the designers at Studio 8 did not design  the Yvette Lace Dress specifically for me. My head has been full of this dress since I went to the Studio 8 launch back in May. Seeing it on the hanger I prayed that it would look as good on as I dreamed. And so when the team at Studio 8 were kind enough to offer me something from their new collection to review, I knew immediately what I wanted. 

As a red head I can never have enough green dresses and this is my most favouritist shade. I would describe it as a deep blend of emerald and forest greens. The shape is a very traditional fifties silhouette with its neat waist and full skirt. The underlayer is a taffeta which has enough stiffness to hold the dress's shape, while still hanging prettily under the mesh overlay. The mesh overlay is accented with a piped floral lac, and the dress has a tie to the waist which I have chosen to tie in a knot rather than a bow. The designers have been clever - they have actually kept the design quite simple, which compliments the rich, sumptuous fabric choices. The sleeves, at their three quarter length, are great if you feel self conscious about you arms. And the back of the dress has a keyhole detail which adds a little extra. 

I always love this shape of dress, but was a little worried about the high neckline, longer sleeves and straight bust line. I was concerned that this would make me look a bit blocky on top. However, the mesh overlay means that the solid colour of the under garment form the shape of the dress, and the mesh just softens it making for a lovely, hourglass outline. The round mesh neckline is open enough to ensure that you don't feel like your choking (I can't bear a tight neck). I am still on the hunt for a decent strapless bra, but so far have found nothing that doesn't make my bust line look rather sad, so I did the next best thing a wore a green bra with thin straps. I was happy that it didn't ruin the lines of the dress at all, and I still felt comfortable and supported. 

Fit wise, I am wearing a size 22 and find it a good fit. It hits me over the knee (I am 5'8) and fits snugly into my waist - which is important to give this dress the desired hour glass shape. Unusually for me I felt comfortable to wear it without my usual shapewear. I may have had a slightly smaller wasitline with it on, and been able to pull the tie in tighter but it's quite pleasant going without the shapewear, particularly in a dress that already has a few layers. I have quite meaty arms and did find it quite a snug fit on my upper arms. If I was slightly bigger I think I would have found it more comfortable to size up to the 24, as mesh is not the softest of fabrics so you don't want to be squeezed into it or it will chafe.  

Me wearing the Yvette at a wedding in Minnesota. 
Black peep toe pumps - Primark
Yellow floral Alice band - Her Curious Nature

I think you will probably agree this is a very special dress, and deserves a special occasion. Those of you who follow me on social media (if you want to, I am on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) will know I recently went to the States (Minnesota to be exact) for a family wedding. It was an incredibly special day, which deserved an incredibly special dress and I was too pleased when the Yvette dress arrived in time for me to wear it. I honestly have never had so many compliments on anything in my life. Minnesotans are known for how lovely they are ("Minnesota nice" is actually a thing) but still, I couldn't walk a few meters without someone complimenting my dress. I chose to pair it with some plain pumps (for comfort and dancing) some dangley earrings and a hair fascinator - and this dress doesn't need anything else. It was pretty warm on that August day but luckily there was a nice breeze or I think I might have been a little sweaty. But it wore well and didn't crease and I honestly felt like a queen in it. 

My first experience with Studio 8 has been amazing - if this is a flavour of things to come, I just can't wait. They really do incredibly special showstopper pieces in their occasion wear, as well as having some great everyday pieces. If you have something special coming up that needs something remarkable I would definitely recommend popping over to Studio 8 and having a look. I am looking forward to wearing the Yvette around Christmas time too I think, as she is pretty much the perfect festive frock. 

What do you think of the Yvette Lace Dress? And the Studio 8 collection? Have you got anything from them yet? 

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Terrific Tilly: Voodoo Vixen Tilly Dress

Cardigan - Marks & Spencer (old)
White belt - So old, I can't remember. Bad blogger
Turquoise jelly peep toe flats - Crocs (similar here)

I am such a fan of Voodoo Vixen. I have waxed lyrical on numerous occasions about their beautifully designed clothes which use fabulous fabrics. I adore the colours and prints they use and so when I got the chance to pick one to review from their Plus Size collection I was thrilled! And picking was pretty tough, but eventually I settled on this fresh little number. As with all of Voodoo Vixen's designs the Tilly is perfectly unusual, and I have not seen anything similar anywhere.

Shirt dresses are standard fifties fare, however I don't have nearly enough of them in my wardrobe. I struggle to find them to fit well with my ust and my waist, and so this is only my second one. As with the Collectif Polly I chose to wear this shirt dress with a vest underneath. With a larger bust I personally find the shirt fit more flattering when I wear it unbuttoned. And it just adds to the casual style and in this case breaks up the pattern a bit. I've also added a medium width white belt (to help give my waist definition), an old M&S cardi in a darker turquoise, and some jelly pump Crocs with a peep toe that I bought in the states. I know, I know! Crocs! But how cute are they? 

I love how in the Tilly the androgyny of the shirt style is offset by the full pleated skirt and the prettiness of the pattern. I was a little worried that the pleated skirt may end up making me look heavier on the bottom than I am, however it is a very flattering style. The structure of the top part of dress gives me a good shape a nips me in at the waist where I like to be nipped in, and the pleats flair out over my tummy. The skirt is also extremely full because of the pleats, so feels really fifties and a bit princessy. 

Here I am wearing a 3XL. According to Voodoo Vixen's sizing chart that is the equivalent of a size 24. I am usually a pretty standard 22 (and recently I have lost a little weight, so am actually on the smaller end of the 22 scale at the moment) but if I was any bigger the dress would not have fit so comfortably. As it is I could't have done up the buttons without them gaping. So I would say this is a smaller cut, and if you are looking to purchase the Tilly then size up. 

I adore the fit, and the fact that this is so different from all of my other fifties swing dresses. It's the fabric that really makes the Tilly stand out for me. The print is Japanese inspired and a riot of cherry blossom in pinks, whites, greens and blues. All the colours mean accessorising with Tilly you have a range of options, and I think this would look too adorable with a baby pink cardigan instead.  As you know, I am an absolute sucker for turquoises. The more I can have the better, and this shade is just gorgeous. For some reason it reminds me of sipping lemonade on a front porch somewhere in the Southern United States (I know, I'm weird). It's a great afternoon summer party dress.  However I am also looking forward to transitioning this original style into my Autum wardrobe with some navy or brown accessories and boots.

So, another gorgeous dress from Voodoo Vixen's plus size range. High quality, gorgeous print and a beautiful print.  All I ask of Voodoo Vixen is that they keep them coming. I can't wait to see what they have in store for us in their Autumn/Winter range. 


Thursday, August 27, 2015

Boob Revolution: Major Bust Overhauls With A Bra

Today I am writing about my super duper bra make over. I am a big fan of lingerie. Beautiful undergarments are a great way to celebrate your figure and feel special under your clothes. But the most important rule of lingerie is it needs to fit. And I always thought I pretty much had that covered. Um... no. Apparently not. I've read statistics that say 80% of women are wearing the wrong bra. And I can believe it. I honestly thought that I was wearing the right size and that my boobs were just a bit crap. Not perky enough, not firm enough, not particularly big for my size. I'd read loads of lingerie blogs, many with super helpful fitting guides - if anyone should have been wearing the correct size it was me. And yet, and yet...

Now, I can't profess to be any sort of an expert on this topic at all. I am surrounded by amazing lingerie blogging giants who have all the go-to information you will ever need (I will include some links at the end) to get the right fit, however I thought it might be somewhat inspirational (too strong?) for you to see the boost a well fitting bra can give you, from a real life case study. Me.

I've been wearing a 40C for years. For those of you 'in the know' about bra sizing that's pretty ridiculous, I am aware! However let me explain to you why. And I think this is a mistake many women make. For years my mum was a D cup. If she put on weight she might go up a bit in her back size, but she was pretty consistently a D cup. My mum has big boobs. Much bigger than mine. So I just did not believe I could be anything past a C. Turns out in recent years my mum got properly sized too and was nowhere near a D. And I had been basing my own bra size on an incorrect standard. I'd just decided that I couldn't possibly be bigger than a C or at the very most a D. Largely because I didn't even know how to correctly get my breasts into a bra. (More on that later)

Also I didn't really understand the correlation between band and bust size. I could try and describe it, but way more coherent and educated bloggers than myself have done some great posts on this (links later). And this diagram is pretty excellent at explaining it:

It is not possible to befriend the wonderful Caroline of Curvy Wordy and continue to wear the wrong bra size for too long. Caroline has a super power! She is the boobie whisperer and on our first meeting she ended up measuring me in a changing room and looking rather sympathetically at my poorly fitting over the shoulder boulder holder. The next time we met up, we went bra shopping.

So, we're in Marks & Spencer and Caroline holds up a 40C next to my bust and says "You're telling me you think those (gestures to my sizeable breastage) can fit in there" Well I felt a right tit (see what I did there!). And so began my re-education. Caroline had me trying on Es and Fs, with a variety of back sizes. She also taught me how to put a bra on. I know right? The old swoop and scoop. Again detailed instructions here but essentially you want to bend over (swoop) as you're putting your bra on and then scoop everything you got into that cup. The bad news is, if you've been wearing the wrong bra size for a while you probably have some migrated breasts tissue. I know. Terrifying. That tissue is making its way under your arms, towards your back, into your pits and God knows where else. However, the good news - scoop that right up and just pop it back in your bra. It'll go back to where it's meant to be eventually, and hallelujah you may end up going up a cup size. Whoot!

Sadly, Marks & Spencer doesn't have the most exciting range of fuller bust bras, so a few weeks later (armed with my new knowledge), I went off to Bravissimo where I was fitted by one of their amazing fitters. If, like me, you are just realising that you are a D cup plus, these are the ladies to go and see. They do all their sizing by sight, they have a large array of sizes and styles and their fitters are incredibly good at what they do. And below you will see the results. I cannot believe the difference in my bust. But see for yourself:

White 40C - Marks and Spencer

In the before picture I am wearing a Marks & Spencer bra in a 40C. It is clearly too small for me. The top  of the cups are cutting in. There is also not enough space in the cups for my breasts so they are not being correctly supported and therefore there is, what I refer to as, an obvious flop over line. Due to the smallness of the bra the central gore (that bit where the two wires sit between the cups) is not sitting completely flat against my sternum. 

The second one is a nude Marcie from Panache's Cleo collection. Fit wise note how my breasts fill each cup completely and the central gore sits flat. My entire bust appears perkier and smoother, with none of the dreaded flop over line and the top seam of the cup sits flush against my skin without digging in. I think we can agree this is a pretty extreme improvement. So extreme I feel like it looks like I had a boob lift - but without any nasty scalpels. Whoop! 

Black 40C- Marks & Spencer

Here again in the before I am wearing the ill fitting Marks & Spencer bra. In this image you can see how the bra was not correctly supporting my bust, so my boobs were actually drifting off to the sides instead of being held to the front of my body (I know - awesome). The central gore is again not flush against my chest and I, yet again, have the dreaded flop over line. 

In the second image I am once more wearing the glorious Marcie from Panache. I just love the detailing on this bra - the little bows along the top of the cup, the sheer mesh in the top half of the cup and the polka-dotted mesh in the bottom half. It is great bra because it is incredibly wearable for everyday and yet is is still pretty sexy. 

Red Padded, 42B - Marks and Spencer 

In the before picture I am (shockingly) wearing a 42B (please, no one tell Caroline!). Before my boobie revolution I always believed that padded bras were the best way to get the shape I was so desperate for. I am a sucker for reds so looking at the label and seeing the size I can only assume that they didn't have my 40C so I just went for a sister size and bought the 42B - FAIL! Again, the flop over line is present and my boobs are not in their optimum position, the top seam of the cup is actually lifting away from the boob (another sign that the cup is too small) and I am cetainly getting none of the desired lift or shape. 

By comparison the Marcie, while in a similarly delicious raspberry shade, is a completely different kettle of fish. My breasts are well supported and have a great shape. Naturally my boobs are fuller at the bottom and quite empty (or lacking in volume) towards the top, so this is a great bra for giving me an all over fuller, more orb like shape. I think you can tell I absolutely adore this bra and honestly want it in every shade and variation imaginable. Give me all the MARCIES! Excitingly the Marcie also comes as a babydoll - sadly I can't currently find it in my size but I am going to keep my eyes open. 

Teal, 40C - Marks and Spencer

Anyone who has been following this blog for half an minute will know I love me some teal and turquoise action. In the first picture I am in a bra which is so incredibly pretty but alas will now be going in the bin because, you guessed it, it doesn't fit! As with the above it's too small - the top of the cup cuts into the breast tissue, the boobs are not supported by the cups but rather squished into it, and I have the dreaded flop over line. 

In the second image I am wearing the Madacasgar bra from Curvy Kate in turquoise. I love the swirly, wild zebra print to the mesh, and the embroidery to the top of the cups. The little coral accents are gorgeous, and typical of Curvy Kate's bras - always a lovely attention to detail. In this bra I went with a 40E as the band is a bit tighter than the Marcie. As you can see I don't completely fill the cups however I am pretty happy with the fit and the shape that this is giving me. Yay for perky boobs! 

So yes, the revolution has begun. Ain't nobody going to stop it! I've got a few tips for you to help you start your own boob revolution:

1. Don't assume anything about your size. A lot of bra sizing is kind of gobbledy gook. Don't go bra shopping thinking you can't be above or below a certain size. In my experience most of the time women seem to be wearing too big a band size and too small a cup so drop your expectations and try on a range of sizes. 
2. Watch some tutorials and read some blogs, because there is a wealth of knowledge out there and it's a good place to start. If you think you may be a cup size D or bigger (you very well could be, hello!) and are in the UK do go and visit the wonderful women of Bravissimo - it's like some sort of unnerving witchcraft who good these ladies are with baps! 
3. Invest in your chest. Initially time wise - bra shopping is a necessity, but shop for it like a luxury, taking your time and investing the best you can afford for you lovebumps. The bras above are a little more pricey than my previous M&S purchases, however I intend to look after them well so they last me a long time. 
4. Remember good underwear is where a good outfit starts. A well fitting bra makes clothes fit better, is better for your back and posture and just looks damn good.

Take a look at the following links for some grade A fitting advice and general knowledge about bra sizing: 

So, do you think you might be wearing the wrong bra size? Has reading this made you think you ought to check? Do any of the above 'Before' pics look familiar? Let me know in the comments...
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