Tuesday, June 30, 2015

#WeAreBeautiful - Boohoo Bright Mix Print Maxi Dress

Online retailer Boohoo are doing a wonderfully body positive campaign - #WeAreBeautiful - and as part of this they asked me to write a bit about body positivity and embracing summer. They also sent me this very cheerful, summery dress for review.



Let's not lie, summer can be tough for us bigger girls. Images in conventional media everywhere show us very specific body types enjoying the summer sun, and not anyone else. Magazines are keen to pounce on every flaw, and shout about secret cellulite from their front pages. Idiotic ad campaigns ask if your body is beach ready. It's a constant onslaught that can get more than a little wearing.

Well I am tired of traditional media. I am tired of being told what I can and can't wear. What I should and shouldn't wear. What is and isn't for me. Maybe you are too? Maybe you want pretty prints and cut out necklines and short shorts? So, if you've decided you're having a summer wardrobe revolution, where do you go for inspiration? Where do you go to get that little bit of extra courage to flaunt your fabulousness on the beach? Get online lovely ladies! Google big girls in bikinis. Follow some plus size bloggers on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. And see big girls rocking fab summer fashion every single day. See them get their arms out. See them show off their legs. See them tan their tummies. And see them look gorgeous while doing it. Because the more you look at these pictures of regular women (and men) just getting out and about and enjoying the weather, as is their right, the more you realise just how silly these rules are. And you know what? The world does not stop spinning because a plus size gal is in a crop top. People do not drop down dead at the sight of you in swim wear.

I am not a bronzed beach vixen. I am not toned or tanned. I am a pale, giant haired, buxom pin up. My legs touch at the top, I have to be slathered in sunscreen or I end up lobster red, and I certainly don't sweat in that glisteny way Beyonce does. But first chance I get I am in a floaty maxi dress, arms out, feeling like a Grecian goddess. Because my body still loves summer. It's been swaddled up in layers of winter woollens for seasons and it just wants to get out there and see the world. A little time in the sun makes my freckles define and darken - I love watching them appear like stars in the night sky across my nose and along my arms. Get me anywhere near an ocean and I will plunge into it. I am seven years old again, and I toss my mane like Ariel in The Little Mermaid, and swim until my arms ache. I float on my back, with my hair fanned out around me and look up at the blue sky and am thankful my body allows me to swim and float and frolic in the water like a child.

I'm summer ready because I have a summer wardrobe I love. I'm summer ready because I have given up trying to be the girl in the magazine. I am summer ready because my body wants to spend some time in the sun and I am going to let it.

I've also set myself a little challenge this summer. I want to push my personal boundaries, and for me swimwear has always been really challenging. So this year I am buying a bikini. It's got super high-waisted bottoms that come up under my bust just about, and it's got a wonderfully supportive top. But it's a bikini! An item of clothing I haven't worn since I was maybe four. This is my personal challenge. My little confidence hurdle to get over. I would recommend setting yourself a little challenge. Take back the summer. Let you skin out. Let the sun kiss it. Let the breeze cool it. Plunge yourself into an ocean. Just enjoy the summer, because it'll be over before we know it!




From Boohoo I decided to choose a SUPER summery and bright dress. I love a maxi dress in summer, and this one deserves to be worn in some sort of exotic location. I ordered it in my usual size 22, and this was a good fit. I like the draw string - this gives the dress a bit more structure and shape, something you don't often find with a maxi dress. This dress is also a good length on me. At 5'8 I often find maxi dresses end up not even nearly reaching my ankles, but this one is a perfect length.




The fabric is bright and fun - feels a little Mexican too me. And it's also light which means it would be great in serious heat. The only thing I would change on this dress is the neckline - the straight across is better on a more fitted bodice. I think this would have looked better with a V neckline or even a sweetheart. That's more personal preference than anything else. I do like the super low back though, especially as it sits just on the bra band.




I paired this with peep toe flat espadrilles, which as so cute and great for summer, however sadly they are a little narrow for my wide size 8s. I also picked the gorgeous Lucy necklace - I adore 70s style jewellery which clashes with a lot of my fifties wear, but is great with a maxi. I love this necklace. It jingles and jangles when you wear it, and I am always a sucker for turquoise.



This was my first experience of Boohoo and it was pretty positive. I like to find new plus size shopping options - particularly those with a body positive stance. Hopefully I'll be brave enough to post pictures in my new bikini soon.

So tell me some of your summer confidence stories below...


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Monday, June 22, 2015

Tropical Punch: Voodoo Vixen Tropical Print Dress from Simply Be

From the minute I first saw this Voodoo Vixen Tropical Print dress I was in love. Reviewed by the gorgeous Miss Lixxie Lou, the colours and print were right up my alley. So when Simply Be offered me the chance to review a few pieces this was the first thing I picked. Most of the vintage style dresses I have gotten lately have been more formal, so I was really pleased to add this summery day time number to my collection.



Black cropped crochet cardigan - Primark (last season)
Wide black belt with gold clasp - Primark
Black cutout pleather pumps - Primark

I was so pleased when Simply Be added Voodoo Vixen to the stable of brands they already stock. The brands give plus size women a wide variety of options to express their individual style, and the addition of a vintage brand means good news for me and anyone else who likes their look a little bit pin up. The Tropical Print dress is now only available on Simply Be's website, so pop over there sharpish before they are all gone. 




I am a big Voodoo Vixen fan. Unlike some vintage reproduction brands who sometimes just make the same styles over and over with little to now originality beyond print, their styles always feel quite bespoke and special. They add little details which make me think their designers really take time over their creations. 
Actually they have just been nominated for best designer at the British Plus Size Awards. [As have I , for Best New Blogger. Eeeek! More on that later this week, but if you'd like to vote for me please pop over to the British Plus Size Awards website]

The little details on the bodice of this dress demonstrate that bespoke quality. I absolutely adore the little wooden rings in the straps, and the sweet collar along the neckline with the piping just gives this dress a little something extra. The other thing that drew me to this dress was the print, and the colours. The big hibiscus and little frangipani interspersed amongst all the lush green foliage make me feel like some sort of (very pale) Hawaiian princess. I love the hula girl with her lei and her little guitar. The whole effect is summery and bright - when I wore this dress this weekend my friend actually told me I looked like a bunch of flowers (how nice!). 





Based on the fit of my Connie dress from Voodoo Vixen I decided to also order this in the 2XL. It's a good fit, helped by the fact that the back of the bodice is elasticated and gathered giving it a nice bit of stretch. It;s a heavy cotton which holds nicely, doesn't crease and is very forgiving of and lumps and bumps (no clinging). The neckline is higher than on my usual fifties swing dresses, which makes a nice change as it is flattering and yet quite demure. 

The skirt flares out from the hip and is really full, and also has pockets (yay!). To give the dress a bit more structure I am wearing it with a belt under the bust - it just gives me that more hour glass shape that I like by cinching me at my smallest point. 


The more eagle eyed amongst you will have noticed that I have images here from two different occasions. I actually took some pictures initially without the little knitted bolero on. The pictures came out and I was really unhappy as the angles seemed to accentuate my arms in all the worst ways and make me feel quite uncomfortable (the only one I don't mind is below). I popped the little cardigan on for the second set of photos as this is more than likely how I will wear the dress anyway, as even in the height of summer the cardi is so light that it won't make me any hotter and will mean I feel a little more comfortable.  


Here I am wearing the dress without my bolero, but with these Sole Diva Black sandals from Simply Be

Why did I tell you about this little crisis of confidence? Well because, although I have come pretty far on my body positive journey, I still have times when I don't feel 100%. A photo taken from a bad angle can still undermine me and make me feel less attractive. However the power it has over me is lessening - these sorts of things used to put me in a funk for days and now I am better at shrugging it off. I am very aware that photographs also only capture a moment. Human beings are very rarely still, and it is their animation and tone which makes people so very compelling. So a snapshot is not who you are or the sum of your parts, and that is really important to remember. It is also important to remember that you should do what makes you feel comfortable. I am more comfortable in my bolero, so that is what I am wearing in most of the pictures. This really just serves as a reminder that some of you, dear readers, may be in the early parts of your journey towards accepting and loving your body, and that setbacks are normal. It is a process and much of it is about being kind to yourself and going at your own pace.  



So, as you can tell, this dress is a real winner for me. I think it is going to get a lot of wear over the summer. It is brilliant for a BBQ (a braai as us South Africans call them), a day at the seaside or just for pootling about at a market or festival. 

Are you a fan of the brands that Simply Be offers? What are some of your favourites, and is there anything you would like to see them do more of? 
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Wednesday, June 17, 2015

My Week In Outfits


Monday



Tan cut out pumps - Primark

There is not much more I can say that hasn't already been said in my review of my latest Lyra. Here I am wearing it to work, and that's one of the things I love about Lyra - so versatile! Work, play, dates. She's perfect!

Wednesday



Polly shirt dress - Collectif
Turquoise cardigan - Marks and Spencers
Black cut out pumps - Primark

Having a little Marilyn moment with this one. This is one of my more casual fifties style dresses, and perfect for day wear. I also love that it can be worn with just about any colour combination. Here I picked turquoise and pink, but in my review I wore it with red - go check it out. 

Friday



Purple off the shoulder tee - Asos Curve (similar here)
Black cut out pumps - Primark
Green beads - thrifted

As you will know if you have been following me for a while, I struggle with casual clothes. I do love a good pair of harem pants, so here I am trying out a more casual look on Friday last week - what do you think? I like that it is fresh and holiday-ish and a little bit bohemian.

Saturday



Tan cut out pumps - Primark
Brown leather belt - very old
Beaded hair piece - birthday present

I have been saving my yellow Phoebe for a very special event. This Saturday was my brother's engagement party and I wanted a gorgeous dress to wear to this awesome event and Phoebe was perfect. I love me some yellow and the japanese inspired print is unusual and beautiful. As I've said before I think Phoebe is definitely more of an occasion dress rather than everyday. I felt so special swishing about in her, and I got so many compliments, I couldn't recommend Phoebe more highly, honestly. For more information, go read my review

What have you been wearing lately? Let me know... 



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Monday, June 15, 2015

Poison Ivy Pour Moi: Review of Lady Voluptuous Lyra Dress in Green

About three years ago I was Poison Ivy for Halloween. This required days of work gluing individual plastic ivy leaves to a green top and skirt bought on the cheap from Primark, butt loads of glitter,  the rather elaborate creation of twin hair horns and at least 2 hours of make up. I am pleased to announce my latest turn as the devilish (but misunderstood) Ms Ivy was a lot easier a transition.



Brown pleather cut out flats - Primark


Those of you who have been reading for a while will remember my rave review of Lady Voluptuous' Lyra dress earlier this year. I originally bought her in teal and since she arrived I have worn her countless times, and for a variety of occassions. Honestly this is my ideal dress. Comfy, flattering, feminine, classy - my cup of adjectives runneth over! And so I opted for a second Lyra, this time in green.



Size wise the fit is identical - which is good news as I found it perfect the first time. I once again ordered a 20 - my usual size for Lady Voluptuous and Lady Vintage dresses (other than the Phoebe). If you want more details on fit check out my previous review. Please also note I am wearing shape wear (giant bloomers that come up under the bust and flatten my tum and smooth me out). I just feel more comfortable with shape wear on, and in this lighter colour my lumps and bumps would definitely show more than with the teal (although I also wear shape wear with that).



I love my teal version, and find it to be a very serviceable colour year round, but this green feels so Spring/Summery and I would be as comfortable wearing it on a beach holiday as I would out in the evening or to work. I often say I like my clothes to work hard and be suitable (in my eyes) for a range of different activities, and Lyra does exactly that.



One of the things that makes Lyra so versatile is the fabric. When I first tried the teal Lyra it was still decidedly wintery and she looked great with tights and boots and I was plenty warm enough. However, now we're headed into summer and I wore my green Lyra first on a muggy London day and at no point felt sweaty or uncomfortable as the dress just breathes well. It was cool and yet offers a nice amount of coverage - I adore the fluttery sleeves (is it just me, or are they quite seventies?) and for those who aren't such a fan of their legs the length is perfect. So yes - Lyra is going to be a good friend this summer.

One quick note - the green has not come out perfectly in these pictures, however the dress is not the colour it looks on the website either. It is something in between. A sort of apple / grass green.


Here I was wearing Lyra to work and so have kept my accessories to a minimum with some tan flats and some small (by my standards anyway) beaded earrings. But I am looking forward to amping up the accessories - with perhaps a statement necklace or some chunky earrings to make Lyra a little more funky. I also think there are a range of colours that would look great with the green. Navy would be a nice conservative option, but I'd also like to try a fuschia pink or lemon yellow cardi (neither of which I currently have in my wardrobe - boohoo!). Cardigans are pretty much a staple in every aspiring pin up's wardrobe, so I wonder if we might see some from Lady Voluptuous in the future. That is certainly something I'd be keen on.



The other key component to my Poison Ivy realness is of course my red locks. Big thanks to the wonderful lovelies at Rockalily for keeping me comic book baddie ready and for this totally FAB colour. If you're in London and like your hair a little on the wild or vintage side this is the salon for you.

So, Lyra and all at Lady Voluptuous have left me a very satisfied super villain! What about you - ever have any fictitious outfit inspo? Have you got a Lyra in your life? Let me know...
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Thursday, June 11, 2015

Guest Post: A Curvier Girls Guide to Mod Dressing - It's All About the Attitude

It's no secret that I love that fifties pin up look. I love a full skirt, a nipped in waist and a slick of liquid liner. It's definitely a look that works on a curvy figure, and for that reason I have probably been drawn to it more than other eras. However, I am a vintage fan in general. My icons (fashion and otherwise) range from Marilyn to Elisabeth Taylor, from Brigitte Bardot to Stevie Nicks, from Blondie to Gwen Stefani.

Today I have a guest on the blog, to talk about dressing 60s style when you're more curvy than you are Twiggy! My beautiful Betsy Dubs ranges between a size 12 and 16, has boobs, thighs and an ass, and she channels some serious Mod glamour every day. She kindly agreed to share some of her secrets here...


Bets in a vintage Mod dress from Watch the Cloth Moth

"My journey into Mod culture (and fashion) was exhilarating - and could easily have been endless. There was a time when I defined myself as a Mod, but there are many reasons I no longer do. However, learning about Mod culture has given me some style rules that really work for me, and I am still a total 60s chick and dressing as such brings me happiness every day!

One of (many) debates within Mod culture is whether passion for the clothes or passion for the music is paramount. It’s a tricky one - I personally think the music must come first. However, the way in which you choose to present yourself to the world, express yourself, and create your identity is heavily made up in how you choose to dress, making style an integral part of being a Mod. 

So, what I learnt initially about Mod clothing for women was very much about an androgynous, boyish look, worn by very slim icons such as Twiggy and Cathy McGowan. The dresses seemed to have a low-waisted, twenties vibe, very short hemlines, high necklines, worn with flat mary jane shoes. As a woman that had always strived to look my slimmest, I lived in heels, low necklines, mid-thigh to knee length hemlines and very much only ever empire waistlines. I did not have the narrow hips, flat chest and skinny legs that Twiggy majorly rocked. Not that you have to wear what is ‘flattering’. Not that you have to wear the right look for your ‘shape’. A woman should wear whatever the hell she wants. But I needed to find a way to express myself as a Mod and still feel like I was doing ‘me’. 



Key Mod looks include (clockwise from top left): stripes, macs and boots, polo shirts and cigarette pants, Peter Pan collars, stripes, low waisted or A-line dresses, polkadots, and more stripes.

So how do I make these looks work on a curvy figure? Well for example I have learnt that I can wear a shift dress, that doesn't show off the smallest part of my waist, that isn't the most ‘flattering’ thing I could wear, and still feel shit hot. I also learnt, that wearing high necklines 24/7 (I haven’t shown cleavage in about 5 years) makes you sexy in a different way. I've learnt there isn't one kind of ‘attractive’. 


Original vintage Mod dress in orange circa 1967

But I do go ‘in’ and ‘out’, I do have curves, and I want to show them. And I found there any many original Mod dresses that do have empire lines, such as my mum’s orange dress (pictured above) which I adore. Also, a Mod staple is opaque black tights which i have ALWAYS lived for. Which makes the shorter hemlines much more flattering on me.


Girls with big bangers can totally rock a horizontal stripe

Horizontal stripes have always supposedly been a no no for me, according to some ridiculous fashion rules. Well I have boobs, and I positively live in stripes. I also found black, stretch skinny jeans that look ok on my not so skinny legs, from M&S. Has to be M&S! I’ve always thought I had to live in bootcut to ‘balance’ me out. But now I wear the skin-tight-ness and feel hot through the 60s-ness of my outfit and how confident I feel, rather than being told what to wear!


Dress from Candy Says - late 60s

I also moved, style-wise, into an era that fits with my personality a lot more, which is something a bit more hippie. I was a natural flower power hippie growing up. I lost it along the way, but have rediscovered it now. It runs against all Mod culture, in that it isn’t tailored, structured, classic or block colour. It is free, floaty and wild. But when I dig out a floaty, empire line, paisley dress and let my hair do its natural wave rather than straighten it to Mod-aesthetic straightness, I feel great. 



Bets in a mustard lace dress from M&S

I tried to only wear vintage for a while, but now, I wear lots of high street too. It simply isn't practical to only wear vintage. So now I find things that fit in with my love of vintage fashion on the high street, like this mustard dress from M&S pictured above. 

I love Mod rules on how to look smart - loafers, skinny trousers, stripey top, mac. I wear that a lot. But I wear patterned psychedelic hippie stuff too. And 50s shirt dresses with plimsoles. I love my parka and my converse trainers. And all my Fred Perry tops. It means I never have an easy outfit to put together - the purple hippie dress only goes with my Mod handbag and I have no shoes that go with either...but then I just clash styles and don’t care whose rules I am breaking! 

And the thing I care about least of all is that I don’t have Twiggy’s body, yet love Twiggy’s clothes...because I put my boobs, arse and thighs in those clothes, wear them with confidence and feel like me!"

If you'd like to read more from Betsy Dubs you can check out her blog which details, among other things, her sexcapades and adventures in the land of dating.

Do you rock the 60s vibe without the archetypal 60s figure? Are you breaking fashion "rules"? Let me know in the comments you lovely lot! 

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Monday, June 8, 2015

Hayley in Wonderland: Review of the PSL Boutique Alice Costume



I absolutely adore a dress up party! It's so fun to dress up and be someone else for a day or night, and to wear things you wouldn't usually. So when the Plus Size Lingerie Boutique offered me the opportunity to try one of their fancy dress outfits the only problem was deciding which one!

PSL Boutique are an American website that ship internationally. They offer a wide variety of plus size lingerie, and their range of plus size costumes is impressive. I don't think I have ever seen such variety, and unlike a lot of plus size costumes that go up to an 18, these actually go up to 22/24/26.


I settled on this adorable Alice in Wonderland costume. I have always loved Alice in Wonderland - it was one of my favourite stories growing up. It's the blend of nonsense, whimsy and wisdom that I love. This costume has that sense of whimsy, with a deliciously adult twist. Plus I knew it would look awesome with my red hair - who said Alice has to be blonde? 

The whole outfit has a sexy kind of wench / maid thing going on, with the ruffled gypsy style top, the off the shoulder sleeves and and frilled, petticoat style skirt. It's Alice blue (obviously!) and they've incorporated some hearts, clubs diamonds and spades into the design as a nod to the story. 


The middle section of the costume is made of a stretchy fabric that allows it to nicely to curves. It also gives the dress a nice shape and accentuates that waist. As my waist isn't ultra defined if I wore this to a costume party I might wear a corset underneath to give myself a more hourglass figure, but generally I think the top combined with the fullness of the skirt is flattering.  The skirt is probably my favourite but - I love all the layers and the little apron is so cute. 

Cleverly, the sleeves have bits of velcro sewed into them on the inside of the arm - this means that if you have more meaty arms you can loosen the velcro and the costume will still fit. 



I ordered this in the 3XL/4XL (which according to the size chart is a size 22-26). I consider myself a pretty standard 22, on the rare occasion a 20, so I would say you need to be aware that the costume comes up a little small, however there is a lot of stretch in the fabric on the top so perhaps it could fit up to a 24. The skirt sits above the knee on my 5'8 frame and I like the length on me. This is meant to be a little saucy outfit, and so I think showing a little leg is great. If I was wearing it for an actual costume party I would probably pair it with some black and white or red and white striped tights for that extra Alice look. 

All in all I was pretty impressed. To be honest I have always pulled my own costumes together from what I could find in me wardrobe, charity shops and Primark, because I have been worried that a proper costume wouldn't fit me properly or would end up looking really cheap and tacky (I have seen a lot that do, for exorbitant prices). And so I was pleasantly suprised that this looks pretty great on, fits nicely and would certainly not fall apart after one wear. And I think the prices are pretty reasonable. Plus PSL currently have 20% off on all costumes. In fact, I am really looking forward to having a reason to wear it. May have to throw a party of my own. 



There are some other great styles on the PSL website, and these are some of my fave that I would have been keen to try. 


Do you like fancy dress? Would you go for any of these costumes? Let me know what you think...
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Sunday, June 7, 2015

Lovely Lana: Review of the Lindy Bop Dark Blue Floral Lana dress

After the success of my first purchase from Lindy Bop, I have been planning my next order. There is quite a selection, but I decided to go with a couple of the Lana dresses.

The Lana is a very true vintage style. I like it because it doesn't seem adapted at all, but like a simple, classy style straight out of the fifties. 


Black and gold wide belt - Primark

The Lana has a a round neck at the front, a deep v at the back, and a full skirt. I went for this dark blue floral print as it has such a vintage feel, like granny curtains (in a good way). I like the fact that the print means you have so many colours to choose from for accessories. It's also one of those prints that will work year round.

I ordered the Lana in my usual size 22 and have found it to be a very good fit. The bust still has a bit of room, so this is good news for bustier 22s. The bodice sits comfortably under the bust, and the round neck is cut quite wide but not very low, which is very flattering as it shows off your decolletage beautifully without being all cleavagy - very classy.



The skirt is very full, pleated at the waist, so even without a petticoat the stiff fabric means it sits beautifully. The skirt goes past my knee (I am 5'8) which is about as long as I want it, particularly with a busy fabric like this. However I think the wide neckline helps to break up the pattern a bit, as does the belt I have added here. 


The Lana does come with its own wide fabric belt, which fastens at the back with two large buttons (a feature I really quite liked). However, despite me trying to wear it in the smallest part of my waist, the belt was just to small. As I said I ordered two Lanas (another review to come) and despite ordering the same size in both, the belts were different sizes. Neither of them fitted me anyway, but that's still not great. Just something to note.


As you can see, the back is pretty low which I like. The graduated V is flattering as it makes my broad back look less wide (always a plus). Generally, as I have mentioned before, I do like a feature back. So often plus sized dresses have full backs so I am always pleased for something different. 





So yes, all and all I am pretty happy with the Lana. Some of the finishing was not the greatest, but then for £30 I can live with that. I will definitely be keeping my eyes peeled for more promising prints as I think this is a great dress for everyday and can be dressed up for occasions too. 
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Thursday, June 4, 2015

Wardrobe Game Changers: Asos Curve Heart Print Prom Dress


I've always loved fashion and clothes. And over the years I have changed my style quite a bit. I am working on a more detailed post about this, but I think the crux of it is as you grow your tastes and the way you want to present yourself changes.


A few years ago I got myself into a real style rut. I'd put on some weight and didn't update my wardrobe to reflect my new size and shape. I guess I was just hoping to drop those couple of dress sizes and get back into my old stuff. And so instead of investing in some new stuff I felt good in, I relied heavily on jeans and tops, tending to wear the same few things over and over just changing my accessories to add some personality. I felt generally quite despondent about the way I looked day to day.

I went looking for some style inspiration but let's be honest - as a fat girl this is not something you find in the fashion mags or on celebs. And so I headed back to plus size fashion blogs where I'd found inspiration before. And all these gorgeous girls were wearing - and rocking - these fifties style waisted dresses. I'd seen them in the shops and just figured they weren't for me. 

Looking back it seems silly, but I was really not convinced that wearing something that emphasised my shape rather than skimmed over it (or obscured it completely)was a good idea. But seeing all these fabulous women looking so damn hot I decided to give it a go. And I order my first fifties style prom dress.






Heart print prom dress - Asos Curve (no longer in stock)
Red Freddie cardigan - Collectif
Brown leather heels - M&S

And here she is. The game changer. From Asos Curve, and bought on sale, this dress changed my wardrobe and my personal style. I was at my mum's the first time I tried this puppy on, and wow! Seriously! Wow! It was like total transformation time. I felt like a princess and a siren rolled into one. That waist I thought had dissapeared back at a size 16 was suddenly there. The poofiness and the twirliness had me spinning in front of the mirror for about an hour.  And that's been me since.





I feel so confident and comfortable in my personal style. That's not to say that it won't change again - undoubtedly it will and that's good. But for now give me tulle and twirling skirts and sweetheart necklines.





I put my game changer dress on a couple of a weeks ago and I still feel just as fab in it. I guess the point of this post is just to remind you that you should take risks with fashion. You should wear the things you like, ignore the rules and decide what you look good in and what makes you feel fabulous.

Have you got a game changer in your wardrobe? When was the last time you tried something different?
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Back to Black: New Look Inspire Bardot Maxi Dress

When the weather gets warmer, I love a maxi dress. There is something so Grecian and goddess-y about them which I just love. A black maxi is a staple in my wardrobe as it just about one of the most versatile pieces come summer. My black maxis always get a lot of wear, and I hate that look of overwashed, faded black clothes, so at the beginning of the Spring/Summer season I always keep my eyes peeled for a replacement.







Black peep toe cut out pumps - Primark
Brown leather belt - old 



I spyed this winner on the New Look website and I was sold. It is reasonably priced (as New Look always is) and I already have a few New Look maxis which I love so I figured it would be a good fit. I am also a sucker for anything that's a bit gypsy-ish, so I will definitely be donning this with some seriously large earrings and bangles at some point this summer.





I got it in my usual size 22 and the fit is fine. If I'm honest I might have been able to size down but this is a dress where a little bit of slouchyness is not a problem and I prefer a looser fit in the summer.   I'm 5'8 and so sometimes have a problem with maxis coming up short - no one wants to look like they're expecting floods - but this comfortably reaches my ankles so looks great with flats, flip flops and sandals. (In a few pics it looks a little short but I think that's just it being hitched slightly by my belt).





The Bardot frill is a great seasonal update - a really easy way to incoporate the 70s trend without going overboard. This is a generous Bardot neck, which means it can be worn quite low down on the shoulders or just off them. The frill creates a pretty, flirty, fluttery sleeve and the looseness means it gives you coverage while not making you sweaty (yay!).





This dress is just super easy to wear. The jersey is thick enough that I don't feel like I have to wear shapewear (althought would probably if I was going out out - but that's more me than the dress), and thin enough that it would be totally practical for a summer holiday. It's the sort of thing I would pair with some pretty sandals for dinner while on a beach vacation.





I know this will be a staple for me this summer - especially on those days where I don't know what to wear and just want something flattering and comfortable. I'm looking forward to showing you some of the ways I style it throughout the summer. What about you? Anything you must have during summer? Let me know below.
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